Actress and musician, Janina Gavankar, reimagines Martin Garrix's EDM single "Don't Look Down" featuring Usher. By returning to her roots, her vision and arrangement included 50 members of The Jersey Surf Drum and Bugle Corps to turn this song on its head.
Buy the original song here: http://t.co/XvhXm9rfPH
Actress and classically trained musician, Janina Gavankar, has created a beyond ambitious reimagining of Martin Garrix’s “Don’t Look Down” featuring Usher. It showcases a drum corps.
What’s the personal connection between Garrix and Gavankar?
“Other than the fact that we’re both Dutch?” (Janina is one quarter so.) “None.” she laughs. “I heard his song while on a treadmill, immediately envisioned a drum corps performing it, and decided it had to happen. Sometimes it’s better to ask forgiveness than permission.”
While in NYC, shooting NBC’s Mysteries of Laura, with only a month to create the self-funded arrangement, track and music video, Janina recruited The Jersey Surf, a world class drum corps, to join the pursuit, and got to work between shots, on set, and on weekends.
How’d they pull it off?
Week one: The arrangement. “Some parts were direct translations of the track, most were completely upended interpretations… oh, and it definitely needed a drum line breakdown.”
Weekend two: The sessions begin. Vocals were cut in one studio, and the front ensemble instruments, (marimbas, vibraphones, timpani, etc) were recorded during another 13 hour session.
Weekend three: 14 hour session tracking drum line and brass instruments.
Weekend four: The music video. 50 corps members, and a drone.
Why’d she do this?
“I’ve been in love with drum corps since I was 13 years old. The level of musicianship, precision, the passion grabbed me and engrained a work ethic in my brain.I’ve been wanting to get back to my roots.”
“Drum Corps International groups are atop the scholastic performing arts pyramid. Faster, higher, louder... standard-setting for marching arts around the world.” More than 8,000 students will audition for less than 3,500 available positions in top-tier DCI ensembles. It’s the best of the best in scholastic marching music.
American arts education funding is in trouble. Support is being taken from programs, robbing students of opportunities to develop important life skills, which pay dividends forever.
”Having an arts education makes you better at whatever you’re going to be. It doesn’t mean you have to end up an artist. I’ve ended up in a completely different field than what I trained in, growing up. But, I am so much stronger, every day, because I have a platform based on an arts education.”