A teepee for Blau

B-ball great Bill Walton lends his Balboa Park–adjacent backyard for music video shoot

“We used the teepee [in Bill Walton’s] garden,” says Dave Matthies. (Back row left to right: Kyle Field, Karl Blau, Bill Walton; front row: Dave Matthies, Andrea Matthies, Jacob Navarro, Royal Malloy)
  • “We used the teepee [in Bill Walton’s] garden,” says Dave Matthies. (Back row left to right: Kyle Field, Karl Blau, Bill Walton; front row: Dave Matthies, Andrea Matthies, Jacob Navarro, Royal Malloy)

While Bill Walton’s son Luke is getting all the media attention for being named the Los Angeles Lakers’ new head coach, his backyard teepee stars in a new music video.

“Bill was so nice to let us use his house for a day,” says Dave Matthies, singer/guitarist for the Gift Machine.

Matthies’s day-job is creating special effects for L.A.-based video-production companies. His video savvy and home-based production facilities in Vista have allowed him to make videos for his psychedelic/indie rock band, for other bands, and in this case, for a longtime friend, Seattle-based artist Karl Blau.

"Fallin' Rain"

...off of <em>Introducing Karl Blau</em>

...off of Introducing Karl Blau

Matthies and fellow North County–bred video producer Royal Malloy (Mountain Monsters, Alaska's Monsters) produced two videos for Blau on a “bro deal” basis. Blau’s new album, Introducing Karl Blau, will be released May 13 on the Raven Marching Band label.

“The album was produced by another one of our friends, Tucker Martine [My Morning Jacket, Modest Mouse, the Decemberists]. We flew Karl down here and shot two videos for him in two days.”

One day was devoted to shooting a ten-minute video for the song “Fallin’ Rain” in Old Town and at the Balboa Park–adjacent home where the Waltons have lived for over 30 years.

It was Malloy’s friendship with Walton that led to the video hookup.

“We used the teepee and his garden for a semi-hallucinogenic jungle scene,” says Matthies. “We were going to have Karl jump in Bill’s pool, but it was a brisk January day so we opted out of that scene.”

“Fallin’ Rain” is an old Link Wray song. “It has an early ’70s Nashville/Lee Hazlewood feel,” says Matthies. “The video had a loose script. There was a lot of improvising.”

The Merrow

1271 University Avenue, Hillcrest

Matthies says the album is a sort of “reinvention” for Blau, 41. “He is well known as a backup musician. He’s done a lot of lo-fi stuff. This album is a lot more complex. Jim James from My Morning Jacket sings on it.”

The Gift Machine appears May 18 at the Merrow with the Low Hums from Seattle and San Diego’s Boychick.

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