Friday, September 23, 2011

Run Karis Run - Cazwell, "Tonight" (2010)

Lola von Miramar is a little obsessed with Cazwell's 2010 video "Tonight," featuring Karis in a Run Lola Run role. Here's the fantastic video:

First of all, it took Lola like forever to realize that Karis is a boy! A Mexican-born one who performs in drag in Mexican Lucha Libre Burlesque Reviews for Cinco de Mayo, that is! OMG. And then, of course, you have Cazwell sampling Shannon's 1984 song "Give Me Tonight"!

(Many of you might be more familiar with Shannon's "Let the Music Play", a classic of Latin freestyle--see video here.)

So by now we have a girl who is actually a Mexican boy making out with Cazwell in a scene of grand domesticity and then running madly through New York City after they have this horrible fight, and Cazwell tells us "I'm gonna write you a love song", and that "you're gonna fall in love with me," all with his white boy banjee realness, meanwhile Karis keeps running (conjuring images of homeless, runaway trans youth), Shannon's song keeps playing, the camera keeps going crazy, the editing has us looking everywhere in its Run, Karis, Run sequences, running through the space of relationships and emotions, through masculinity and femininity, through musical styles and genres, historical periods and influences, and through the upside-down cityscape of construction scaffolding, train platforms (Grand Central Station) and other sites. The juxtaposition of Latin freestyle--which came about as an electronic dance music alternative to 70s disco--to Cazwell's mellow pop rap draws us in, the frenzy of the imagery is reproduced in the music and then exploded with the rapper's all-out jump into more straighforward hip hop rhyming: Cazwell as a queer homothug Massachusetts-born channeling of Detroit's own Eminem. Puerto Rican freestyle meets queer rap (also known as homo hop) in NY. All of this graced with the surreal presence of trans celebrity extraordinaire Amanda Lepore, who suddenly appears in the video as if a Playboy bunny stepping out of a cake. Cazwell's rap shifts the romantic tone of the song to a frustrated account of failed exchanges. But Shannon's backup chorus lyrics always overlay, rescuing the possibility of love. THIS VIDEO'S JUST TOO MUCH! I LOVE IT! Hope you like it too.

No comments: