Crossfire Choir

Rockin' Brunswick - Crossfire Choir - "Disappointment" (12 of 12)

Posted by Paul Devlin:

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Crossfire Choir came to me with this video completely envisioned.  All the shots were written out, we dressed up the Court Tavern to look like a set, they brought costume changes and after the shoot they diagrammed how they wanted it edited. I was happy to have the band so invested and well-prepared and enjoyed the collaboration. It’s probably the most polished of all the videos in Rockin’ Brunswick.

After I finished shooting that summer of 1983 in New Brunswick, I returned to the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor for my junior year. I brought all the Rockin’ Brunswick raw footage with me (old style 3/4” tape), and used the University’s equipment to learn how to edit video. It was a huge project and took months. And I have to admit, my course work in English Lit suffered a bit.  My passion was shifting to filmmaking. And I was developing a skill that has sustained me ever since.

I’m thankful to everyone involved in Rockin’ Brunswick, and gratified that these posts are inspiring some happy nostalgia so many years later.

That's our final episode of Rockin' Brunswick.  We hope you enjoyed it, and we ask you to support the film by purchasing the DVD here.  Also, check out this big article on Rockin' Brunswick that just came out today in New Jersey's Sentinal newspapers

Stay tuned for more web series from us as we launch The Eyes of St. Anthony, and CutTime in the coming months!

Rockin' Brunswick - Crossfire Choir - "Right to Lie" (11 of 12)

Posted by Paul Devlin:

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Crossfire Choir was a great band, incredibly tight and self-assured.  That’s well-represented in this impressive, funky new wave track.  They were all over the dark florescent look and mixing in the trails from the old 3-tube camera.

Watching their rise, it seemed inevitable that they would make it big, and that’s how I positioned them in Rockin’ Brunswick.  They became the favorite band of CBGBs in New York City, toured with some of the top bands of the day – Culture Club, Thompson Twins, Midnight Oil - and, according to their MySpace page, “the band agreed to a two-record deal with Geffen Records that was rumored to be one of the biggest deals ever offered to an unknown act at the time.”

But that page also describes a harrowing, rock and roll story of a band that should have made it but instead stumbled and fell. There were a lot of rumors swirling around New Brunswick about what happened.  The one I heard was that a band member insulted a record executive’s wife and that’s what sunk them.

Who knows what really happened.  But as their reputation rose, they definitely got cocky locally.  I remember keyboardist Eddie Freeze spitting beer out into the audience as part of the show.  One night the audience got fed up, and spat beer back at him.  “Hey! This is expensive equipment!” was his reaction.

But Crossfire Choir always treated me well, and headlined a spectacular show at Rutgers University for the premiere of Rockin’ Brunswick.  I’m still a fan!

Stay tuned next Thursday as we conclude Rockin' Brunswick with one last song from Crossfire Choir!

Or you can get the DVD of Rockin’ Brunswick, here.

Rockin' Brunswick - Crossfire Choir - "Left Behind" (1 of 12)

Posted by Paul Devlin

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I grew up near New Brunswick, New Jersey and a lot of my buddies were in bands.  But I wasn’t a musician; I was into making films.  The best way for me to participate in the music was to make music videos.

New Brunswick in the 80’s had an amazing music scene, especially with Rutgers University in the mix. Bands everywhere and lots of places to play. A champion of the music was WRSU DJ, Matt Pinfield, who later became famous on MTV and commercial rock radio. Rockin’ Brunswick was all about that scene.  It was my first documentary.

I shot it all in one summer and then went back to the University of Michigan where I used the school’s equipment to learn how to edit video and put the movie together.  Editing became a lucrative skill.  I discovered it was much more useful getting me jobs on my subsequent travels than my English Lit degree.  

This opening piece is by Crossfire Choir.  They came up from Florida to be near New York, discovered New Brunswick and took the scene by storm. They got their big record contract with Geffen and toured with Culture Club, and Thompson Twins.  But like most rock and roll stories, it did not end happily, and there were many rumors as to why...

Over the next few weeks we’ll post more videos by Crossfire Choir and the other bands in Rockin’ Brunswick and tell more of the back story, so stay tuned.

 

 The DVD of the movie is also available here!

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