Rapping for Riders
Friday, January 29, 2010 4:36 PM
In a novel twist to attract riders, METRO's rolling out its first rap video.
Modeled after the Beastie Boys, our rap group, the Transit Boyz, talks of the benefits of METRO.
It's the M-E-T-R to the O
The buses and the trains
Keep you on the go
Our marketing staff wrote, produced, directed and rapped the song all in-house. Even the actors were sons of staffers: Jack Koch, 5, (son of Karl Koch); Chad Murillo, 7 (son of Art Murillo, senior community outreach rep); and Liam Rogers, 6 (son of Brian Rogers).
The only part that was outsourced was the recording and mixing of the audio. That kept the cost down to about $500.
"The concept behind it was to do something interesting for the campaign on a very low budget, so we figured we could parody music videos or music artists," said Koch, manager of creative services. "Our inspiration for that was the Beastie Boys."
It was a team effort with Koch, and copywriter Sydney Scardino, Rob Fritsche Jr., senior copywriter/producer and graphic designer Brian Rogers - some playing roles for the first time.
Koch and Scardino co-wrote the rap - their first. Rogers, Koch and Fritsche recorded their voices and dubbed it over the kids' voices.
"It was very intimidating - standing in front of people and doing something you've never done before," said Rogers of his debut rap in the recording studio. "It was a learning experience, and it was fun. It's something we all put together, and it all came through."
Scardino said the group wanted "an urban look with a twist of some fun in there, as well." She added that even her 60-year-old dad called it very current and very hip.
Fritsche, who shot, directed and edited the video, said it was the first time he's worked exclusively with kids. "Basically, we blocked out everything we were going to shoot. And in some cases, we had to find locations on the fly. They're not professional actors, so it took longer. Being a parent of one is hard enough, but becoming a temporary parent of three was a real challenge."
It was exhausting, said Koch. "Not only did you have to keep them interested, but keep them fed, bandaged and out of traffic."
But the hard work paid off.
Koch said he hopes the video shows that METRO isn't just a government entity. "We're showing people that we're paying attention to them, and we're doing more with less," he said.
Added Fritsche, "It's a subtle and unique way to get people to pay attention to METRO and its services without following the same old route."
Click the YouTube link below to watch our new rap.
In the first photo above, our rappers are, left to right: Chad Murillo, Jack Koch and Liam Rogers.