You’re invited on a thrilling ride of resilience in the motion film video of “Expensive Game,” produced by Chicago-born lead singer of Richie Dagger Crime, R. Nelson. The video also features two of Seattle’s finest dancers from the Freestyle Street and Club Dance Community—Heartbreaker and Janu Sun.
The Radical Human, Born G. Jean-Paul Chevalier, the 29-year-old vocalist, writer, and dancer had a modest childhood growing up on a farm in Washington’s rural Whatcom County, just south of the Canadian Border. The 2nd born of three sons to a nutritionist and refinery worker. Chevalier always had an appreciation for music but never thought it would be something to come to pass for him, but here we are.
The Radical Human Exclusive Interview
What is the song “Expensive Game” about?
Expensive Game is a funky, soulful yet sophisticated declaration of resilience in the midst of a world that sometimes tries to claw at you for what you have, and for the gems that you keep. Expensive Game offers the listener a chance to dance and celebrate their own independence and peace of mind in knowing who you are from the start.
How would you describe the story-line to your music video?
The video communicates a journey, perhaps it represents for a day or perhaps a synopsis of a lifetime; Beginning seated if at a friend’s house with tea, conversation, perhaps brunch time and talking about similar situations in life. After tea, walking with two friends down the street to an event, being followed by a stalker, who represents the lurking feeling of being watched and admired from afar.
While walking Chevalier accidentally loses a playing card. In this film, playing cards symbolize different characteristics of oneself. The stalker in a mask then picks up the playing card trying to get a grasp of The Radical Human. The stalker is obsessed and symbolizes the wider theme of an inability for forthrightness, leading to jealousy and bitterness.
This stalker then goes around the corner and is seen giving Radical’s lost card to a person unknown and the stranger is seen making a cash payment for the card from the stalker. Metaphor being, selling good characteristics for what it’s worth. Transitioning to the Casino scene, the Radical Human is at center focus with dancers, Heartbreaker and Janu Sun. Moving on to later in the video, Chevalier and a group, including the stalker, begins a game of Texas hold’em.
The stalker is at the game with low-quality cards/characteristics; jealousy, wrath, and blasphemy. Chevalier’s hand wins the match with cards reading steadfast, resilience and patience. In the end, The Radical Human took the cards that the stalker lost had for the game, and burns the least of them in the fire; symbolizing the demise of poor character.
How did you come up with the Vision for the Music Video?
Chevalier replies “By dancing in the studio and just absorbing the feel of the song, I got these visions in my head of gold, betting, lavish tapestries and, fast-life things”. The song had a retro yet modern feel that he felt the need to capture on video, inspired by the lyrics. Additionally in the lyrics, Chevalier uses the concept of currency and money as a metaphor for portions of internal character and speaks to crazed antics as being a form of social betting, hence the gambling rhetoric woven in the lyrics and theme.
Where did you shoot the video, and what inspired the locations?
Filmed in Seattle, Wa. Locations being in an alleyway, restaurant/bar, a cigar lounge and at a friend’s Queen Ann apartment. “I didn’t want the viewers to know where we were…wanted it to be in unrecognizable places.”
What inspired you to choose those locations?
“The location choices for the 1st stanzas of the video we’re inspired by the movie, The Outsiders, more street style and casual. Then the latter half of the song is to hold the ‘Casino scene’ so I wanted sophisticated, classy, yet edgy. I wanted it to still battle with your mind as if to ask ‘what decade we are actually in’…I wanted nothing modern…I wanted bricks, I wanted grimy things.”
What were some of the obstacles to overcome during the process of creating this video?
“Rescheduling the biggest day of shooting due to a friend’s family emergency. It was hard, but a no question when it comes to situations like that.”
What were some of your favorite parts during the process?
“My favorite part of the process in creating this project would be, one, making the song at RDC’s White Center studio every other Sunday night for the better part of 2017-2018, eating Mexican food, with Jarritos or a sweet cider…and two, shopping for outfits and props. I gathered items from all over Seattle, and found some of my favorite pieces on Melrose Ave in Los Angeles.”
From start to finish, how long did the video take to complete?
“The video took over a course of four months to complete.”
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