Once in awhile, Galileo Media Arts has the opportunity to do a pro bono project for a cause we really believe in. Caffe Lena has been a mainstay in Saratoga Springs since 1960, making it the oldest continually running coffee house in the United States. The down-to-earth, non-profit venue has played a part in the careers of many folk music legends, including Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan, and Arlo Guthrie. Yet despite its international reputation, Caffe Lena has stayed to its roots and always valued art and community over profit. Needless to say, Saratoga residents and businesses, including Galileo Media Arts, are proud to have Caffe Lena as part of the community.
Recently Galileo had the opportunity to collaborate with local businesses, residents, and musicians to produce a music video paying tribute to Caffe Lena. Producer Joel Moss, and a whole host of successful folk musicians including Arlo Guthrie, Garrison Keillor, and Sawyer Fredericks, came together to co-write and record a song showing their appreciation for the coffee house. Partnering with local ad agency Brandforming, Galileo co-produced, filmed, and edited the music video.
On the shoot day, over 150 locals came out and volunteered to show their support. Police closed the streets. Employees from local restaurants, such as Hattie’s and Sushi Thai Garden, came out to sing along. Others played along on guitars or hand drums. Galileo Director John Wager stood atop a 30 foot crane with a bullhorn, directing and organizing the large crowd of volunteers singing and dancing below.
Bringing together our crew from the Boston, Albany, and Saratoga Springs areas, Galileo Media Arts spared no expense. Using a variety of framerates (24 fps, 60 fps, and 120 fps), five cameras filming simultaneously, and one drone flying overhead, Galileo was able to capture the enthusiasm of the event from a number of different angles. We then edited together this crowd footage, shots from recording sessions, and a beautiful nighttime intro sequence, into a heart-warming music video. At the end of the day, Galileo was deeply honored to be a part of this project. It was a wonderful testament to the power of community that so many locals came together and volunteered their time and energy to show support for the beloved Caffe Lena.