Pollock Pines resident Aldo Panattoni is passionate about three things: music, videography, and travel.
This coming year, his first two passions will fuel his third when he heads to Memphis, Tenn. to attend the 33rd Blues Music Awards where his recent work “That’s My Thing — Elvin Bishop Live in Concert” is nominated as DVD of the year.
Panattoni acted as executive producer for the new DVD created in partnership with VenMundi.com, a concert and event streaming company.
The video features 18 live tracks including “Travelin’ Shoes” and “Stealin’ Watermelons,” and is home to Panattoni’s exclusive interview with Bishop — a blues guitarist best known for his participation in the Paul Butterfield Blues Band as well as performances with B.B. King, John Lee Hooker and the Allman Brothers.
VenMundi featured “Elvin Bishop Live” as its debut streamed performance for the media platform that Panattoni described as a “startup company with really smart people … trying to bring music to the world so you don’t have to go to a venue to see it.”
Already, the DVD has started a successful run and is into its second pressing with its fortunate adoption by Bishop’s label, Delta Groove Productions.
“A picture is worth a thousand words,” Panattoni said, “at first they didn’t want to distribute it.”
After seeing Panattoni’s work, however, Delta Groove was glad to jump onboard and take over the difficult task of distribution.
Now, the DVD is available to U.S. audiences and abroad through online and in-store channels. Panattoni expressed extreme relief over the lifted burden of distribution and described the year-long task of producing a video of this caliber.
Panattoni is no newbie to the entertainment industry and still remains part owner of Total Media Group, a company he founded in the South San Francisco Bay Area more than 30 years ago.
Nonetheless, this project took a wide variety of skills and endurance from pre-production considerations like “client relations, logistics and acquiring the venue” to filming with an 11 person crew.
The show was filmed with three robotic cameras operated by one individual, two other handheld cameras, a person operating a live switcher, and a variety of other technicians operating sound, lights and broadcasting.
“[This] was kind of my little baby,” Panattoni described with a smile, but willingly acknowledged the team effort of the project and the role of Jarid Johnson.
Johnson acted as “director” on the project, a title loosely defined in event videography, but entailing gathering technicians, live switching the event, and re-editing in post-production.
Also mentioned was Ron Parks, founder of VenMundi, who insists on giving a majority of the profits to the artists and the venues.
Interestingly, even with the collective efforts of Panattoni’s team, the project ran into several delays when trying to secure music rights.
Panattoni explained the music industry’s tendency to grow like “a small fish getting eaten by a bigger fish, getting eaten by an even bigger fish.” The confusing challenge was to figure out which company owns the rights to individual songs that were owned by a variety of small companies or individuals previously.
For Panattoni, it was all worth it.
“I like him, he’s a great performer,” Panattoni said before happily admitting seeing Bishop perform more than 100 times starting in 1976 at the Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco.
The filmmaker’s taste in music is not only restricted to Bishop, but a wide variety of performers including several local musicians.
Panattoni mentioned Frankie Soul, Johnny Mojo, Hickory Wind and Tamra Godey as a few of his favorite regional talents.
“Johnny Mojo is in about eight bands and plays everything from bluegrass to blues to Grateful Dead,” Panattoni said about the popular local musician and continued his conversation about his love for the area. “Placerville has everything anybody ever needs … (it) is fantastic.”
The filmmaker’s next step is to consider his coming projects while enjoying the pine trees, great entertainment and wonderful restaurants of the Gold Country.