My RFL Song Project

NOVEMBER 16, 2022: The video is completed and approved by the Director of Relay For Life in Second Life! So this page now gets to tell the high points of the story.

OVERVIEW:

The “Relay For Life Song” was composed and recorded by Jon Christopher Davis and was the winning entry in a song contest in 2010 (see news video at the bottom of this page). I first heard it when I was looking for a music background for a short video to promote our Seekers of Hope Fashion Fair fundraiser last February. I used a portion of the song in that video:

The song really moved me! I decided I would like to create a longer video, of the entire song, using all Second Life musicians–a new music track and several (back then I was thinking 10 to 12) vocalists that I could edit together with images of themselves and RFL events. I wanted a product that can be used for years to help promote Relay For Life–perhaps even not just in SL but the real world as well (AND to raise awareness of our fantastic musicians, artists and builders inside SL)!

THIS IS A COMPLETELY “INSIDE SECOND LIFE” PROJECT

Nobody (including me) is getting paid. The purpose of this project is to help the American Cancer Society Relay For Life event.

THE PROCESS:

  • –In summer, I requested and received a letter from the American Cancer Society Permissions Department for this project. They control all of ACS’ copyrighted and trademarked materials.
  • On June 11 (Relay Day), I was all over the SL RFL track shooting as many video segments and photos as I could (but see below for more about this).
  • –Over the summer, I asked vocalists to participate, and received commitments from some of SL’s best vocalists!
  • Renowned SL/RL musician Trowzer Boa agreed to arrange and record a new background track (which combines his amazing Robot Band 2.0 and his own live saxophone).
  • Trow had the music track ready in record time! I sent it to the vocalists in early October, and they each rehearsed and recorded their voice track (using headphones so the background track was not recorded). I had all six of their tracks by Halloween weekend.
  • –At the end of August, disaster struck when the hard disk with the Relay weekend (and all other) raw video crashed. (I thought these files were backed up!) But the Relay For Life Volunteers group, and especially Relay videographer Bain Finch, jumped in to create lots of new footage to replace it. Volunteers logged in and walked streets and roads all over the place, and one of the builders even created a stretch of Relay track just for this project! An amazing effort that you will see when the video is released in February!
  • –As soon as new video was available, I immediately got to work editing the voice together with the video clips. This was a painstaking project that took several weeks. I went line-by-line through the song, selecting voices that would blend well or, sometimes, allowing one to come through as a solo. I listened to segments hundreds of times to get the voices right and select the best video pieces to accompany them. (Bain and I even went out and shot a few short bits that were needed to be just right.)
  • Bain made suggestions throughout the editing process. As the editing came close to completion, I asked a long-time, non-SL videographer friend, as well as an SL musician friend, to take a look and make suggestions. All their ideas have made this a better video!
  • When I finished editing in early November, the first person who viewed it was the Director of Relay For Life in Second Life, and his response was overwhelmingly positive! So now (November 16) the musicians get to take a look; there are a few Lindens who have access to it as well.
  • –Public release will be the February 18, 2023 Kickoff of Relay For Life in Second Life!
  • From there on, it is my hope that the ACS makes use of this video any way they can to promote the amazing Relay For Life campaigns inside and outside our virtual world!

That’s it! If you have questions or need more information, please IM me inworld or (better because I get capped) Email me: danaenyo@yahoo.com .



LYRICS (click to view as raw text)



VIDEO OF THE WHOLE SONG:

This is low quality but the only one I can find of the full song (until this project is released)!


HERE’S HOW THE EDITING SCREEN LOOKED on November 2, 2022:

That’s my editing screen! Here’s what it all means:

The task you see is selecting the best individual or combination of voices for each line of the song. All six are fantastic, but the mixing is very tricky because the voices and the artists’ interpretations of the song are so different! It was a fascinating process, unlike anything I’ve ever done before.

On the visual side, there was endless tweaking of images to go well with the song. Inworld RFL volunteers were just fantastic as they have walked for our cameras.

BE THERE February 18, 2023! Info will be posted at the Relay For Life in Second Life Website!