A "rockumentary" exploring the true, bizarre life of indie musician Noah Engh on his West Coast tour in a vintage Cadillac!
"My Caddy Won’t Let Me" is a unique music documentary, following Noah Engh “The Kid Fantastic” on his August 2010 west coast tour in a 1978 Cadillac. The film aims to capture the “unique character” (to put it mildly) of “The Kid Fantastic”, and capture a rare glimpse into the life of a touring musician who literally “lives on the road”, with no actual address, regularly performing over 200 shows a year, by himself.
The world of independent music is a far cry from the romanticized debauchery of Motley Crue, the Rolling Stones, and Led Zeppelin. The life of an independent touring musician is about sleeping on concrete floors, sometimes for weeks on end. It is the constant struggle for gas money, living in sweat soaked clothes for days or weeks on end, and battling unscrupulous promoters in an effort to make a 300 mile journey from Phoenix to Las Vegas profitable enough to then make it from Las Vegas to Fresno the next day with enough money left over for a luxurious cup of Starbucks coffee rather than a Styrofoam cup of “truck stop Kool Aid” (sugar packets and water).
It is also about the incredible vistas seen only by those who live their life on the road, the outrageous personalities and unlikely friendships you encounter along the way, and the time to reflect on the bizarre and unlikely scenarios that transpired the night before, and might some day be glorified and spun into legend by armchair rock stars at publications like Rolling Stone.
"My Caddy Won’t Let Me" is an uncomfortably true celebration of this rarely observed life. Set against the tremendous backdrop of west coast California and the Pacific Northwest, this film is an homage to that rare group of individuals known as independent musicians.
I met Noah Engh in 2010 while working on a project as Artistic Director and writer/blogger for indieonthemove.com. He answered a mass email asking for unique tour experiences to be included in a blog I was working on. As fate may have it he was playing a show at a venue in the Phoenix area, where I live, only days later. I caught up with him at the show and was instantly blown away by his astonishing stage performance. After all, Noah Engh is a “one man band.” No one performing on stage by himself, with just a resonator guitar, electric boot, and a growly set of vocal chords should ever to be expected to captivate an audience, moment for moment, so effectively.
Furthermore, off-stage “The Kid Fantastic” reads like a character straight out of a Chuck Palahniuk novel. He wears 100% polyester all day, every day. Seriously. He has no address, he travels alone, and his experiences from the road read like… uh, a character out of a Chuck Palahniuk novel (maybe Carl Hiassen, minus the Everglades).
For my part, aside from my position at Indie on the Move, I am an independent filmmaker, producer, and rock photographer. Beyond staying very active for the last half decade taking photographs for rock bands, designing album art and promo material, I have produced four art/music documentaries and numerous music videos.
In 2006 I toured the eastern United States with Philadelphia area rock band, Zelazowa from which we released the feature length documentary, What They Want Us to Be, We Can’t Always Be. This project led to another Zelazowa documentary project in 2008, "Convoi Exceptionnel", chronicling the life on a completely independent (no record label, no sponsorship, all DIY) rock band touring Europe. The six week tour spanned France, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Sweden, and Norway, during which we; slept on cigarette littered concrete floors in windowless rooms that locked from the outside; charmed our way out of harm’s way with an unruly band of meth addicted, heroin dealing bikers in Marseilles, France; and got locked into the underground bunker of a Polish military base in Warsaw.
In 2009 I produced, in conjunction with the Heinz Endowments for the Arts, a feature length documentary exploring the inner workings of Pittsburgh based Bodiography Contemporary Ballet. In 2009 I produced a feature length documentary for the platinum-selling, Louisville rock band, Tantric, chronicling the behind the scenes recording of their 2009 album Mind Control and the production of the first music video from that album, “Mind Control”. "Tantric – The Making of Mind Control" is currently pending official release through Tantric and the Warner Music subsidiary, Silent Majority Group. Segments from these productions and many others can be seen on my website at http://www.daveurbanic.com.
For the production of "My Caddy Won’t Let Me", we need your help to take this film from the realm of a YouTube/promotional curiosity, to that of a fully realized cinematic endeavor. While many of the technical requirements for basic production are in currently in position, the film cannot reach is full potential without your assistance in acquiring some of the so-called “bells and whistles” that will expand this production from being a mere companion piece to Noah Engh’s new album, to turning it into a respectable and award winning feature in film festivals world wide.
Where will your money go?
Without getting into too much technical jargon, you will help provide us with video tapes, extra SD cards and storage space, batteries, audio cables, some specialty video accessories, and an extra one or two person addition to our very sparse production crew (which includes only me, and Noah if he helps carry some of my gear before the shows).
Also, an old Cadillac. If you’ve heard Noah’s music, you know why we can’t shoot a road movie in a 2005 Nissan Pathfinder or New Beetle. This film is as much about creating a vibe and visual mystique as it is about capturing the day-to-day struggles of performing musicians. Renting a vintage car is extremely expensive, but buying a 1978 Cadillac is extremely cheap. Your money will help us add Noah’s “co-star” to the cast, and hopefully buy her the new brakes and spark plugs that will ensure we get not only to Seattle, but also back to Los Angeles. Plus, if we break down and have to barter with rural tow truck drivers in the Pacific Northwest, it will be ever the more enlightening (read: entertaining) for the viewer!
Posters, promo material, mailing costs and film festival submissions. These all cost money, and these are all things that you will receive or be a part of. Aside from getting your hands on the swag associated with your pledge amount (some of which we need to print specifically for this purpose, and mail), you will get your name in the credits of a fantastic documentary film that will likely be seen in numerous film festivals both nationally and worldwide!
Thanks for your support!
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
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Digital download of the film, and a "My Caddy Won't Let Me" mock-Cadillac medallion sticker!
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All of the above PLUS an autographed original cartoon illustration by Noah Engh, and an autographed guitar slide.
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As many signed posters as you want (within reason), digital download of finished film, three Noah Engh albums, autographed cartoon Illustration by Noah Engh, autographed guitar slide, executive producer credit, actual Cadillac used in the film with custom “The Kid Fantastic” vehicle medallions, delivery of the Cadillac to you, anywhere in the continental United States. The trip to your house and subsequent delivery and signing over of the car will be filmed and included in the final film.
- (89 days)