Neil Young & Crazy Horse THIS TOWN


From Neil Young: ‘Tim Pope is the director from England who has made several of my personal favorite videos.'

Neil is such a laugh and always very funny to work with. He likes to play characters I create. He was of course the first person ever to take me to the States in '83.

The song has a wonderfully lackadaisical, sleepy quality, and this is what I was after capturing. I later prod Neil with the broom and also my hand spontaneously reaches in to work his jaw to make him sing. 

We filmed it in 1997 in a desert town, Pearblossom in California, in the middle of nowhere. It was all a bit of a relief as I had recently come off the horrendous experience of making the "Crow 2" movie with the Weinsteins in Hollyweird. 

As we went round corners on the flatbed truck, the cranking arm of the silent era camera to achieve the jerky FX kept coming out of its hole. Someone told me the camera had been used by director Fritz Lang to film ‘Metropolis,’ though I doubt if true. 

The local residents didn’t appreciate us shooting the video in their normally sleepy town and someone at the local meat processing plant intentionally opened a door to waft the smells our way. I am currently working on a scratch 'n' sniff version of this video. 

Above is me pictured with Neil and Elliot Roberts in London. Elliot, who had been Neil’s manager since the ‘70s, sadly passed away a couple of years back. He used to describe my work as ‘guerilla’ and I’d make ‘ug ug’ noises like a gorilla. 

For some reason - and I don't know why I'm mentioning - Elliot's office at Lookout Management on Sunset Boulevard used to smell of cork tiles.