Our Seahawks music video almost never happened.
On Sunday, January 19 I texted Marie and asked her what she thought about doing a Seahawks song for the week leading up to Super Bowl 48 on February 2. She replied with an emphatic yes.
Then, on Wednesday, January 22 I asked Marie what she thought of doing a parody of Katy Perry’s “Roar”. So far, so good.
Marie wrote back an hour later warning me that she might not have the time to record on our targeted date of Sunday, January 26. I didn’t hear from her for a few days so I actually thought that the idea was dead. Until Marie texted me on Thursday, January 23 asking “Any chance we can still do the Seahawks song? “ It was truly music to my ears. I called Arielle soon after and we were on for Sunday night.
I figured I needed to do a bit of research, so I sent a Facebook message to Emil, Art, Rozano, Joseph, and Bryan (all 5 of them live in Seattle and I met them all through Krissy aka the “people-connector”). Without telling them what I was up to, I confirmed some of the most prominent Seahawk storylines with them and asked them for other topic suggestions. Their answers ranged from simple (#1 offense vs. #1 defense) to philosophical (the redemption of Peyton Manning and the validation of Pete Carroll and the Seahawks while finding truth through sport and personal triumph – thanks Art haha). I was grateful for the feedback, even if I couldn’t fit it all into the song.
I awoke Sunday morning, January 26 excited to write the lyrics. After listening to the original song a few times to get the hang of the timing and phrasing, I began to type up some players’ names and story arcs. The original lyrics lent themselves quite well to an anthem-like song and it became evident to me that I wouldn’t have to deviate too far. Thus, I was able to work in the brash yet intellectual Richard Sherman, Beast Mode Marshawn Lynch, and quick references to Russell Wilson, Percy Harvin, Peyton Manning, and the Legion of Boom.
The whole process took 15 minutes.
I emailed the lyrics to Marie and Arielle by lunch time and we set our meeting time for 5pm. Marie and I practiced first at 5:30pm, making minor tweaks in the process. I called Arielle to confirm that she was still coming and she responded affirmatively, simply saying:
“I have a feeling this is going to be big.”
Arielle arrived by 6pm and we did another half an hour of rehearsing before recording. It was quite a fascinating process to be a part of: I had two lovely and mega-talented singers figuring out harmonies, inflections and runs. Mixed in there we talked about camera angles, lighting, microphone position, and where we would stand and sit.
We called Sean in to man the cameras and scroll the lyrics and 30 minutes – and 3 takes – later we were done. I said bye to the ladies before eating dinner and helping get the kids ready for bed. I edited the video for an hour before uploading it to Twitter and posting my first tweet at 11:32pm on Sunday evening.
— Clay Imoo (@CanuckClay) January 27, 2014
When I woke up on Monday morning, the video had a couple of hundred views. Not bad, but not great. As we started to share it throughout the morning, we heard that CTV played it on the news (we still haven’t been able to track down the clip). Then, Global TV contacted me late Monday morning and we arranged to meet a reporter and cameraman at 2:30pm that afternoon. Even then, the view count was only at 800 or so.
As we were gathering, we learned that Global had posted a link on their website. We did our interview with Brian Coxford and went our separate ways, eager to see the final product. By 6pm, our video was up to 1,800 views.
The piece ran on the 6pm Global News (and at 11pm as well) and by the end of Monday the total was at 7,000 views. But we certainly weren’t prepared for what would happen on Tuesday.
On Tuesday morning, a prominent Seahawks Facebook Fan Page (it has over 130,000 members) shared the video and by noon it had been shared 500 times from that page alone. At its peak, the video was getting 4,000 hits an hour which is crazy. By the time Tuesday had ended, we were at 50,000 views, surpassing the hit total for my Under John Tortorella video.
After 7,000 views on Monday and 43,000 views on Tuesday, the rest of the week went like this:
-Wednesday: 20,000 views
-Thursday: 12,000 views
-Friday: 12,000 views
-Saturday: 15,000 views (including going over the 100,000 view mark)
-Sunday: 14,000 views
-Monday: 4,000 views
As I write this, the total view count is 127,000 views which is completely insane. In looking at the analytics, 89% of the views are from the USA, 7% from Canada, and the remaining 4% spread throughout the world. I didn’t know that people in the French Guiana were interested in the Super Bowl.
We are extremely grateful to the Facebook pages and radio stations in Seattle that shared our video. Locally, we’re thankful for family members, friends, and colleagues who helped spread the word. Along with Global TV, the Richmond Review also ran a web story and then put us on the front cover of their Friday edition!
Once I saw the size of the picture, I actually lamented that I didn’t start my #Roadto40 six months ago! Thanks Martin for the opportunity.
A couple of other interesting tidbits:
Throughout the week, I was badgering the official Seattle Seahawks twitter account to share or at least acknowledge our video (the Seahawks Canada account shared it right away). It was looking pretty grim despite my repeated attempts (alongside the repeated mentions from others). Finally, on Saturday evening, they did so in the form of this tweet:
— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) February 2, 2014
Needless to say, we were thrilled.
Then, on Sunday morning, I was contacted by the CBC National News for an interview. After a quick Skype test to ensure my makeshift studio would be appropriate – I used a hard wire connection in my pantry – I anxiously counted down the time to 2:30pm…which was an hour before kickoff.
The four-minute interview with host Christine Birak went by very quickly, and I was able to share the story behind the video. You can see the video in this link.
After a crazy and exciting week, I was able to enjoy the Super Bowl with Gail and the kids in the comfort of our own home. By now I’m sure you know the story: the Seattle Seahawks pummelled the Denver Broncos 43-8 in a score that actually flattered Denver.
The Seahawks SOARED indeed.