Doc director talks ‘Crossroads’ of an Enid band 

Musicphiles surely are aware of local videographer Nathan Poppe. From his “on.” series at Oklahoma State University to his current work on “The VDub Sessions,” he has showcased Oklahoma bands in four to five minute segments for close to two years.

Poppe is devoting a little more time to his latest subject, making his first foray into feature films with a 40-minute rock doc playing a 6 p.m. tonight at Individual Artists of Oklahoma Gallery, 706 W. Sheridan, as part of the deadCENTER Film Festival. Individual tickets are $10.

“Black Canyon’s Crossroads for the Restless” has the Enid folk band playing the seven songs from its Civil War concept album, each in a different location in the group’s hometown relevant to the subject matter at hand (even filming in the presumed resting place of Abraham Lincoln assassin John Wilkes Booth).

From a cemetery to an abandoned drive-in theater, the four-piece shares its special story through song with unique and colorful settings for each tune.

Making his directorial debut, Poppe shared a little bit behind the production process, the things he learned from it, and how he’ll carry those things forward.

Gazette: What about doing this movie was more rewarding than the other projects you've done?

Poppe: My friends and I have been working on music projects for more than two years. Having the chance to collaborate with them on this project pushed the film to the finish line at deadCENTER.

Gazette: How'd you come to document Black Canyon in particular?

Poppe: I came to document Black Canyon because I loved the story behind its music. I'm glad I got to document the band because the way in which the songs are performed won't be replicated.

Gazette: Where did the title of the film come from?

Poppe: There was a newspaper in a hotel we filmed in. The title came from a headline on the newspaper.

Gazette: What will moviegoers/spectators take away from the film?

Poppe: I hope people think this film has interesting music, and I want people to connect to the story hidden in the songs.

Gazette: You did the filming in just 24 hours. What positive aspects came from doing it in such a short frame of time?

Poppe: Because the film was shot so quickly, we didn't worry about it being the most perfect film in the world. We set out without expectations and documented what Black Canyon had created. It provided the crew with a challenge to finish filming and move on the treacherous editing process.

Gazette: How did the band react to seeing the film for the first time?

Poppe: I remember smiles and laughter.

Gazette: What about it are you proudest of?

Poppe: The videography crew. This film wasn't made by me; it was made by two groups: my friends and Black Canyon. I am proud the two could collide and end up with this film.

Gazette: What from this experience will you continue to apply through the years with everything else you do?

Poppe: The more you involve people, the better. This was the biggest crew and the biggest filming session I've ever experienced. Remembering the importance of everyone that helped make a film possible is clutch. It's easy to get caught up and overlook a multitude of details such as lighting, audio and being hungry. I want to learn how to pay attention better; that's something I will apply to everything I do.

Gazette: Describe the Civil War in your best Sarah Palin voice.

Poppe: It was revolutionary, don’tcha know.

Read our interview with Black Canyon.

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Joshua Boydston

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