We Are The Willows, one of our 12 Minnesota Bands You Should Listen To Now in our ongoing 50 States Project, has been hard at work since we last caught up with them in 2013: they’re set to embark on a tour throughout their home region, and their forthcoming album Picture (Portrait) Pt. 1 is set for release this fall.
The album is based on 350 love letters written by frontman Peter Miller’s grandfather during World War II, and the video for album track “Dear Ms. Branstner” is no less personal than the subject matter. Working with Zach Johnston, who is also a musician in PHOX and the firect of several music videos, We Are The Willows’ latest video uses family photos to illustrate the story of the song.
“I felt a bigger responsibility making this video than I normally would with other bands,” said Johnston. “This song and album are about Peter’s family, and the pressure to honor that story and create something universal was very real for me.”
The result is a beautiful and timeless visual that goes hand in hand with Miller’s narrative.
“Just like the band did with their songs and arrangements, I simply painted over these old memories and slides something modern and vibrant,” said Johnston. “Hopefully to make this old love story feel just as alive as it did fifty years ago. It’s like the moment when you look at your parents or your grandparents and see them not as your elders but as grown up kids.”
Check out the video for “Dear Ms. Branstner” in the player above, and view We Are The Willows’ upcoming tour dates below. Picture (Portrait) Pt. 1 is set for release on Nov. 4.
We Are The Willows Tour Dates
18 – Madison, Wis. @ Memorial Union (Der Rathskeller)
1 – Duluth, Minn. @ Redstar
7 – Winona, Minn. @ Ed’s No Name Bar
8 – La Crosse, Wis. @ The Root Note
13 – Menomonie, Wis. @ UW-Stout, Blue Devil Productions
14 – Eu Claire, Wis. @ The House of Rock
15 – Des Moines, Iowa @ The Vaudeville Mews
13 – Saint Paul, Minn. @ The Turf Club