Video Essay: Phils Ochs on Mississippi

I decided to focus my video assignment on Phil Ochs’ song “Here’s to the State of Mississippi”. Considering that I narrowed down my topic to one specific track, it really helped when it came time to gather information for the video. However, I did realize earlier on that it was going to be really easy to go over the time limit if I didn’t summarize several of the issues discussed within the song. For example, initially I had thought that perhaps adding the revision of the song about Richard Nixon would be useful, but it ended up making the video sloppy.

During the production process I encountered a couple difficulties especially with the song usage. I looked for a song that would go well with the video because I wanted to include some background music, but I felt that it was distracting at times and I just overall couldn’t find a song that I liked to go with the feel of the video. Music can make or break a video, and a lot of the songs I was looking at were either too dramatic or a little too folksy. I decided to just include short snippets at the start and at the end, but there is definitely room to go back later and add more music to it.

In the future, I would spend more time searching for “extra” parts for the video, such as background music, I think that a song to accompany the video would definitely strengthen it.

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4 thoughts on “Video Essay: Phils Ochs on Mississippi

  1. You did an awesome job with your video. I love how you used a chord/lyrics sheet to showcase the lyrics. I wouldn’t have thought to do that. Where did you find the video footage and did you have to get permission or was it fair use? I tried finding video footage but I wasn’t confident I could use what I found.

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    1. The lyric sheet idea was actually thanks to Dr Takacs. I did reach out to the individuals who posted the video, but did not get any response, so I went with fair use. They did mention that they had gotten the footage from an archive.

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  2. I thought this was great! I originally wanted to do a video but got overwhelmed and changed course. Finding the right music was one of the things that scared me away from doing video. I think you did amazing with what you have!

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