Jarred Gastreich is the creator and videographer of Show Me Shows, a St. Louis based one-take video production. Show Me Shows specializes in filming intimate interviews and performances of St. Louis musicians. The idea for a one-take video stemmed from Gastreich initial fascination a silimar production, "It's always something I wanted to do because of Take-Away Shows. I've always admired their work and how easy it is to produce it." In just under a year Show Me Shows has grown, incorporating national acts like the Head and the Heart and Spring Standards into its lengthening CV.
In order to discuss Show Me Shows future plans, and this Saturday's Show Me Show(case) Gastriech met with RFT Music at The Wood. The restaurant was hosting an acoustic performance that he wanted to see, "I shot Brendan Bradley for the first Show Me Show," he says. Gastreich talked about St. Louis music, why he believed it was time to do a showcase, and future Show Me Show endeavors.
The Showcase is this Saturday, May 19 at Plush. Gastreich's Show Me Show's will host performances from Justin Kinkel-Schuster of Water Liars, Bo and the Locomotive and Pretty Little Empire, Last to Show First to Go, Trotting Bear, Netherfriends and Little Horn. The event is 5 bucks and starts at 6 p.m.
Blair Stiles: Why did you decide to do a showcase?
Jarred Gastreich: The showcase idea has been in the back of my head since working with Ryan Albritton. Ryan does the sound for most of the Show Me Shows and curates his own showcase for the STL LOUD compilation albums. I was looking for a reason to see my viewers face-to-face. It seems like the music scene here is pretty close-knit and we really enjoy each other's company. St. Louis is a very supportive scene, and that pushes people like me to try and get everyone together more often. Plus, the showcase gives me a reason to wear my mustache - not that you need an excuse to wear one, but being a show curator is pretty fitting, yeah? ...being a mustache-wielding-videographer, I am all-to-often mistake for being in the porn industry.
Why did you choose these particular bands to shoot/for the showcase?
I am relatively new the music scene. I was introduced to it by going to Picasso's Coffee House open mic. That's where I first saw Dots Not Feathers over a year ago. I followed Dots Not Feathers into the city where they played at Foam. Foam is/was home to a lot of the Union Tree Review folks and I asked if I could do music video for them. After shooting "44" in their apartment it just snowballed from there and I was introduced to so many other Indie bands. I call them Indie bands, we can argue for the right genre all day. Regardless I love it, it's fresh and genuine. I suppose if another band blew me away at Picasso's Coffee House, say a blues band, then this showcase would be mostly bluesy artists. So, I chose to shoot these artists to begin with because it's what I'm into right now. Next year is sure to be a different story though. How do you pick an artists or act for the showmeshows?
It's 50/50 recommendations and personal interest. For the most part, previous bands we shot recommend other bands, and I receive messages from the facebook page from interested parties. It's very exciting getting random inquiries because I love discovering new bands and musicians. One of our biggest surprises was when I asked a Chicago blogger who he was interested in. He recommended a musician from Oklahoma who had recently sent him a CD sampling. I caught up with the musician who goes under the name Young Readers and he was so fantastic. His songwriting is top notch and we made such a beautiful video together.
What do you hope this showcase will accomplish?
I think before anything it is a huge step in the right direction for next year. I am really excited for this weekend, it's some of my favorite bands on the same stage on the same night - it's going to be one mighty good time. I hope it brings some fans together that normally wouldn't have met. I hope it introduces some people to a new favorite band. And I hope some people come out and realize what awesome talent St. Louis has in the music department, albeit only the tip of the iceberg. Next year I hope to accomplish all of this more-so by blending together bigger gaps in genres.
Do you have anything in the works?
I can feel myself diggin' in to the the hip-hop scene more. Yes, you can count on there being a 2013 Show Me Show(case), and other events such as Show Me Show(ings) and maybe a tour - like an "I'll show you if you Show me yours(tour)?" ... that name is a work in progress. Little Horn is the only band that we have not shot yet. We will be shooting them the morning of the showcase. I found out about them via a friend in Atlanta and I told them if they ever venture up to St. Louis I would love to shoot them. We got to talking and it worked out perfectly that they could be the band nobody ever heard of to play at the showcase. I think we really need what they bring to the table, they push boundaries and that's a quality I hold high in a band. I definitely want to travel. I think traveling would help St. Louis in the long run, too. I think it's going to show other cities St. Louis talent. And maybe if those other bands see St. Louis one-take play with them.