||When Mr. Eric Harris is asked to explain the Major:
Where to begin? You see, I never met The Major in person myself. I was
away when it all started, on one of those frequent rock music tours
back in 1997, ten years ago now. Also I never lived in Denver, where
The Major was first "encountered". By the time I heard about it
everything was already happening. The filming was in the planning
stages and two or three of The Major's songs were recorded. Would I
like to help? Sure, who did you say this Major guy was? I'll call
Joey, he can help with the special effects, I think he's got an Amiga.
A kid's movie? Really?
I'm glad I didn't get my way and start filming on Super8. Instead we
started with Betamax. Then moved on to 8mm, then to High-8, then...
some obsolete digital format, who can remember? We had bad luck with
moisture, some of the tapes drowned or were lost in the format
battles. "Instructions" would arrive sporadically via postcard from
The Major. We had lots of ideas, interpretations if you will, and back
in those days it seemed perfectly reasonable to film them all and make
sense of it later. Of course not all of the Major's ideas were
plausible, in fact most of them were unrelated to any sane conception
of reality, and a few were downright illegal. This was before CGI was
available to the working classes you know, so you had to actually do
shit. I remember the pirate ship set was a little pathetic. Tape got
moist anyway, so forget it. Same with the rented furniture in the
public toilets. Didn't really look like a spaceship like The Major
said it would. That tape got especially moist.
Years flew by. We were all so busy with music and to be honest we were
getting discouraged. We had dozens of video tapes, some of which were
moist. Hundreds of hours of video. Nothing to edit it on until much
later. Athens is a transient town, our actors kept moving away. How to
explain? Somehow the answer always seemed to be JUST KEEP FILMING. By
the turn of the century we didn't have much of a movie but we did have
a huge pile of footage, some on formats that we could no longer play
because the damn Betamax broke down or because of the incessant
mildew. But we had lots of songs recorded....
So it became an album, and the film was scrapped. We hadn't got a
postcard for a year or two anyway, so what was the point? Was there
ever a point? Nope. People seemed to like the album so, we mused, at
least something good came out of it. Pitchfork absolutely hated it so
we knew we'd done something right. Everyone moved on.
Then one day I saw it - the plot. I mean the plot of the movie. It was
there all along, in all of The Major's disjointed scenes and in the
bizarre lyrics, waiting to be threaded together. Genius! I won't go so
far as to say it made sense, but it suddenly made un-nonsense. And
that's always been more than enough for me. I called the team back
together, those who were left. I found our stars - Kirin and Sophie
Fernandes - who weren't even born when it all started. Perfect. Too
We're going to finish the movie. We have the technology now. We have
the fucking thing finished if you look at it kind of squinty. And the
worst draught in the history of the South. Moisture problem solved.
Ladies and Gents, coming in Fall of 2009, we give you "MAJOR ORGAN
AND THE ADDING MACHINE". A movie to ponder over. With your children.