ANDREW BIRD: FEVER YEAR
feature-length concert documentary film
Filmed during culminating months of the acclaimed singer-songwriter’s most rigorous year of touring, Andrew Bird crosses the December finish line in his hometown of Chicago – feverish and on crutches from an onstage injury. Is he suffering hazards from chasing the ghost of inspiration? Or merely transforming into a different kind of animal “perfectly adapted to the music hall?” FEVER YEAR is the first to capture Bird’s precarious multi-instrumental looping technique and features live performances at Milwaukee’s Pabst Theater with collaborators Martin Dosh, Jeremy Ylvisaker, Michael Lewis and Annie Clark of St. Vincent. 80 minutes, Dolby Surround
Summer of 2009, Andrew and I were sitting on his porch and he asked me to make a concert film capturing the 165th (and final) show of the year with his beloved band-members, knowing their tight onstage bubble would disperse soon after. He’d spent nearly five years carefully assembling the band, and was loathe to leave its only visual record to short TV appearances and internet videos.
Andrew was in the middle of an insane touring year – the apex of over a decade of hard work. He’d been suffering from perpetual fever, a common topic of our latenight post-show phone calls from wherever he was in the world. I’d joke that he was a frog in hot water, temperature rising to meet the rigor.
We’d previously collaborated on three projects (live-show projections, two music videos) and for years I’d had an opinion of how a feature-film about him should be made. Just as Andrew is often praised, criticized, or cornered for creating “unclassifiable” music, I strongly believed that a “rockumentary” or “concert capture” approach would not adequately honor his work.
FEVER YEAR isn’t a document of Andrew’s intimate details or an assay of his sweat. It’s a snapshot of a time during which he became “perfectly adapted to the music hall” – his risk and reward for being an undeniable creative force.
- Xan Aranda, August 2011; Chicago USA
* WINNER *
* Jury Prize, Best Documentary Feature; Omaha Film Festival 2012
* Audience Award, Noise Pop Film Festival 2012
* Best Sound; Southern Appalachian International Film Festival 2012
* Best Documentary Feature; SENE Film, Music, & Arts Festival 2012
* Golden Ace Award; Las Vegas Film Festival 2013
* Best Popular Culture Documentary; Documentary Edge Festival 2012
ABOUT ANDREW BIRD
New York Times Magazine:
“Mr. Bird spins existential doubts into elegant confections.”
“He uses centuries old instrumentation to give depth and soul…”
Since 1997, Andrew Bird has released nine studio albums and performed sold-out concerts at the Sydney Opera House, Radio City Music Hall, Carnegie Hall, as well as other iconic venues and festivals worldwide. His 2008 album, Noble Beast, was lauded by critics and fans internationally, including Rolling Stone Magazine, National Public Radio, Mojo, Paste, Artforum, The Guardian, Pitchfork, and others. Mr. Bird spoke at the TED Conference in 2010 and will release his next album in 2012. Visit his website here