While contemplating his life, a recently deceased rapper (teewhy) goes through the stages of a being corpse, from being found dead to his inevitable burial.

Creative team

Artist/writer: Tyler Gibson (aka teewhy)
Director: Mark MacDonald
Producers: Tyler Gibson, Mark MacDonald, Bryce Schleibinger

Filmmaker’s statement

“’I want to direct you in a video where you don’t use ‘rap hands’.’
‘Oh yeah? How?’
‘I’ll stick you in a coffin.’

This was part of a conversation I had with my friend Tyler Gibson, who goes by the stage name ‘teewhy.’

Our friendship started over a conversation regarding our mutual love for the Beastie Boys music video Sabotage in film editing class. We loved the idea of how fun that video would have been to make, which led to further conversations of making music videos for Tyler.

We studied countless rap and hip hop videos and how a lot of them had a common performance aspect – what we called ‘rap hands’ meaning that while the performer rapped they couldn’t seem to help but move their hands in an enthusiastic manner.

Depending on the rapper, this aspect could either help the overall performance, or seriously hinder it. Even Tyler, while performing as teewhy, was guilty of this technique. Needless to say I wanted to do something different that (hopefully) left some sort of impact with the audience which led to the above conversation and pairing with his song titled Giant.

According to Tyler, Giant was the byproduct of the influence of one of his favourite actors, James Dean – who tragically died right after filming his last movie with the same name (‘live fast, die young’).

After listening to it, I couldn’t help but think about mortality and death (my biggest fear) and what happened after you died.

The lyrics paired and the haunting/tragic sample [of James Dean, not included in the NSI Online Short Film Festival version] produced by Tyler’s occasional collaborator Bryce Sly made me think what would happen if we were still aware after we died – would you would be stuck in a internal inner monologue for all of eternity?

The concept turned out to be a roundabout way for making a no rap hands video.”

About Mark MacDonald

Mark MacDonald

Mark is an east coast filmmaker living in a west coast film industry.

While working full time on various television productions, Mark (somehow) manages to find time to film music videos, produce short films and write screenplays.

Mark recently placed third in NYC Midnight’s 2014 Short Screenplay Competition, and co-produced previous NSI Online Short Film Festival entry Cat Vs. Man.

Mark is both a graduate of St. Francis Xavier University’s business program in Antigonish, Nova Scotia (his hometown) and Capilano University’s film program in north Vancouver, BC.

Check out more videos at teewhyhiphop on YouTube.

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