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Music Video

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“The Most Beautiful” Lyrics Video Now on YouTube

Contributors to our fundraiser just got an advance download of our song “The Most Beautiful” today. For those who haven’t contributed or pre-ordered on iTunes, you can enjoy this most beautiful lyrics video of the song on YouTube now. We know you’ll be playing it on repeat all weekend. :)

Thanks for being our most beautiful. <3

Preview All Tracks from “The Light of Day / The Darkness of Night”

Now you can preview all songs from our new album The Light of Day / The Darkness of Night.

We’ve added a 13 minute video so you can hear clips from all songs on our upcoming album. We’re currently at 20% of our fundraising goal (THANK YOU!!!) with 3 weeks to go. We still need your help!

Please pre-order our album for as little as $10 or contribute any additional amount to receive some very spicy Thank You gifts from us. If you’ve already contributed, we’d really appreciate if you could share this link to our fundraiser:

http://www.mingping.com/thelight

Hear It

The Light of Day Music Video

This video was made in honor of Christopher MacKenzie and the firefighters of The Granite Mountain Hotshot crew, 19 of whom lost their lives while heroically battling the Yarnell Fire one year ago in June 2013.

In July 2013, a friend of Chris MacKenzie’s sent us an email to say that his best friend had been lost while fighting the fire and that they shared the music of Ming & Ping throughout their friendship. This so profoundly affected, inspired, and challenged all of us as creators and as human beings.

Having written The Darkness of Night EP and some demos from The Light of Day EP coming from a pretty dark place, we immediately decided to bring these songs back to the drawing board. Ming & Ping’s The Light of Day will be released this October 21 with a focus that can be summed up with a couple lines from track 2 “The Light,”

You’ll never find peace without unrest
And you won’t see the light without darkness

Sometimes we forget “the meaning of light.” Art helps us remember. We hope you enjoy the music. We’ll make this song available for free once the album is out. Please add yourself to our mailing list to get announcements of the new music.

Thank you for 10+ years of spice.
Bao, Ming, and Ping

Wintersong Music Video: Five Years in the Making

Wintersong is the last song on our record Causeway Army, released in 2007. We had the idea for Wintersong video many years ago, in late 2007. We did some work on the video with our creative director, Bao Vo, but we never found the perfect place to film the video. Soon after we got busy with touring and moving to Los Angeles and the project was forgotten until February 2012. Here’s a story about how we made the video.

vermeer.weighing-pearlsWe started writing Wintersong in a small apartment in Hong Kong, by the window looking down on a busy street in early morning. In the recording, you can hear some sound from that place, which we recorded before returning to the US. Wintersong was meant to be a secret track on the album, but we decided it should be an ending track instead.

The feeling of the song and the image it paints for us is always that of contemplating in silence near the window. When we told this to Bao, he suggested that we create a very minimalist video based on Johannes Vermeer paintings, which usually include a woman doing something alone and lit by a single window. We quite liked the idea as it fit our feelings about the song perfectly, and we began to learn about Vermeer’s paintings. We found that in each painting there are so many things that are left unsaid and so many guesses that the viewer needs to make. In fact, there is a sad/funny/awkward scene in Tim Burton’s movie Beetlejuice that looks like it was very inspired by Vermeer’s work.

wintersong-sketch-by-bao-voThe idea for the video was to shoot one long, continuous shot of Ming singing the song while Ping provided the music from a tape recorder. We twins would not look at each other or speak to one another, so as to create many unanswered questions about our relationship. Near the end, Ming would leave the lyrics sheet and Ping would pick it up, to hint at one answer about our bond.

The lighting was the most important element in the video, so we planned to shoot the video with artificial lighting in order to control the light, which required us to have a large place to film and was also our largest challenge. Bao says this about the lighting:

[quote]I wanted the light to tell a lot of the story. We needed to do something with so many microscopic nuances that you could watch the video a dozen times and still find new details in the room each time something happens.[/quote]

Ugly Motel RoomNext, we worked on finding a location to shoot the video that would have a lonely room with window lighting from one side. We found a few very ugly motel rooms around Los Angeles and even looked at some beautiful apartments where our friends lived, but we were not happy with any of these places. Soon we became distracted with life and let the the idea for this video go in 2008.

In the winter of 2011, the song Wintersong became relevant to our lives again as we faced some challenges in our life and relationship. The image of the lonely window again was very powerful to us. Bao had planned a trip to New York and rented a flat to stay during the trip. When we saw images of this place, we asked if we could come for one day to film this video.

wintersong_still

We arrived in New York City in spring of 2012 and met with Bao. Now we decided to do the video very simply and let the lighting speak. So we shot the video in one take using just the natural lighting at 7am. We just love the way the light changes in the room when Ming enters or leaves – it’s as if a spirit had come and gone. We did not have a tape recorder, so Ping played the song from a laptop and Ming sang the main parts. We shot the video on a Canon DSLR using a superwide angle lens, then Bao colored it afterward and applied the text and titles. The entire bit only took us about two hours to set up and film, then we enjoyed Central Park where we began writing another winter song called Someone Else. We would release Someone Else in The Darkness of Night EP, for which you can see behind the scenes.

More info on how we made Wintersong and our album Causeway Army in a couple of weeks. Sign up to our MAILING LIST to receive an early announcement when it’s published.

David Manley of Up In Arms

David Manley is an exceptionally talented artist who has created an entire world of puppets, and also the awesome music video for our song Electricity featuring puppet Ming & Ping!

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