For eight years, La Blogothèque has been creating the best way to watch music on YouTube. Its Take Away Shows follow independent and mainstream artists around various French locales and capture what they do best: make music. This week, Jack White reminded us why this series is so amazing.
White sets up in the Château de Fontainebleau, only 35 miles from the heart of Paris, accompanied by his bandmates and plays the lilting-yet-powerful track “Same Boy You’ve Always Known” from 2001’s White Blood Cells. The song is completely transformed. Meg White’s continuous drumbeat is absent, instead replaced with folky mandolin and upright bass. White’s voice reverberates throughout the cathedral. The end result is mesmerising.
After a quick breather, White heads to the roof and gives us a taste of his upcoming solo album by playing the song “Entitlement.” What’s great about these videos, and really all of La Blogothèque’s work, is that nothing is rehearsed or practiced like traditional music videos. It has a”jamming with your friends” feeling, but instead of being in your drummer’s garage, you’re on top of a 16th-century French castle.
White’s short château set is only the latest example of similar awe-inspiring videos. I originally stumbled upon the Take Away Show video series when spotting a Local Native’s parade through Parisian streets in 2011. Last year, Arcade Fire crammed into a tiny elevator as a short preamble before playing in the middle of large swarming crowd, and then there was that one time Phoenix gave us a drone tour of Versailles.
Traditional music videos play their part, and some can be amazingly creative, but seeing artists play these intimate sets in such amazing locations makes you fall in love with music all over again — every time you press play.