When you think about great song titles “Mess About You”, “Wasting My Time” and”Wasted” are straightforward and raw, and caught the attention of filmmaker Elise Salomon. The Pizter College graduate in Media Studies encountered Wild Records with those three songs and is on the brink of her feature directorial debut with the documentary Los Wild Ones.
Growing up Elise knew she wanted to be involved in making movies but did not know how or when that would take place. According to Elise, “The moment I found out that there was a job called “producing” was the moment I knew that’s what I wanted to do.” It is with that determination and passion that Elise began a career in film. The first feature film was Paper Heart, which premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival in the U.S. Dramatic Competition and won the prestigious Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award. The second feature film, which she Co-Produced, Smashed, premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival in the U.S. Dramatic Competition and awarded the Special Jury Prize for producing.
While working on a narrative project Elise discovered Wild Records. Not only did she discover a record label that was unlike anything she had heard before there was a unique “family” element that existed, “I wanted real, authentic 50’s Rock ‘n’ Roll – raw, furious, sexy, and just buzzing with electricity – but I wanted it to be contemporary.” Elise discovered what countless fans have experienced since 2001, and that was the Wild Sound.
The documentary chronicles Wild Records founder Reb Kennedy and the Wild musicians as they travel and perform. The film goes beyond music and touring, “The bond between Reb Kennedy and his artists is unparalleled in this level of the music industry. The loyalty they express to him and his business model can be equated to nothing other than pure love. Love for the music and love for one another. Just like every family dynamic, there is a fair amount of dysfunction but they manage to stick together through thick and thin.” When Elise heard about the reception Wild Artists receive in Europe she could not have imagined the flocks of people attending the shows “It gave me chills. Just seeing a sea of people sing along to their songs. It was extraordinary.” It was moments like these that really gave Elise an opportunity to not only capture Reb and the Wild Family but also the loyal fans from all around the globe.
The films name is derived from the Marlon Brando movie, The Wild One (1953). The title “was a joint decision between me, the producers and the editor…Using the word, “Los” is our way of highlighting that a majority of the people on screen in the film are young Latino/Hispanic artists” says Elise. The title is fitting because the 1953 movie is the first to capture culture and youth in its raw rebellious state, much like the documentary that will premiere at the SXSW Film Festival 60 years later. According to Elise, “SXSW is the absolute perfect place for the film to premiere. The festival combines interactive, music and film. There isn’t a better place to introduce the film and the Wild Family to audiences than in Austin during SXSW.” One thing is for sure, everyone in attendance will not only be in for a musical explosion but also a visual encapsulation of Wild Records.
After communicating with Elise, Reb and several Wild Artist I can attest to the unique family that exist at Wild Records. The film The Wild One centered on one main character and the supporting cast of bikers but watching the trailer for the movie Los Wild Ones it becomes apparent that Elise captures the Wildest sounds around. The openness of the Wild Family is amazing because the filmmaker has now formed a bond with them and truly wants them to succeed in their endeavors. Elise is a great movie director/producer because she realized there was a story to be told and took the chance and spent 9 months following and recording the Wild Records Family and by doing so will display them to the rest of the world through her lens and captured lightning in a bottle.
Los Wild Ones: World Premiere 3/11/13 @SXSW Film Festival
Director / Producer: Elise Salomon
Producer: Jennifer Cochis
Producer: Jessica Golden
Los Wild Ones on Facebook
Los Wild Ones @ SXSW
Photos courtesy of Daniel Funaki: www.facebook.com/daniel.funaki