Jimmy Wayne, “I Will”

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October 25, 2008

With all due respect, this is the most unintentionally hilarious video of the year. The song is so fiercely un-country that it makes “Bob That Head” sound like Bob Wills, and the screen adaptation exacerbates that problem by setting the story at an upscale fashion shoot, of all places. What does it say that the same genre that once gave us “Coal Miner’s Daughter” now implores us to sympathize with a pretty upper-middle class girl who lacks the self-confidence to sex it up for the camera? I guess I’ll let you decide.

In any case, the awkward little details of this video are really too enjoyable to spoil, but suffice it to say that the concept seems utterly disconnected from the song, the direction does nothing new (note the Flattsian “dozens of golden spotlights behind the singer during the chorus” effect), and the dialogue…well, just watch it.

Altogether, the piece suggests that one of Jimmy Wayne’s greatest distinctions as an artist – his penchant for musical catharsis – may also become his greatest liability. I dug the unabashed emoism of “Do You Believe Me Now” (at least in its video incarnation), but this is just way too much drama for no good reason. Wayne has talent and passion to spare, but he needs handlers who will sit down with him and help him find the right way to channel those gifts; here, he just comes off as an indiscriminately energetic pretty boy.

Directed by Deaton Flanigen

Grade: D+

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21 Comments

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  1. “So fiercely un-country that it makes ‘Bob That Head’ sound like Bob Wills” is my official nomination for line of the year.

  2. TomNo Gravatar says:

    another great milliken sound bite. keep ‘em coming, pal.

  3. Chris D.No Gravatar says:

    The funniest part is on the CMT.com blog, they reviewed new videos:

    http://blog.cmt.com/2008-10-24/five-contenders-this-week-in-the-new-parade-of-videos/

    They hated this video, and they rarely hate videos, I thought it was funny how they decided to only show this video on CMT.com, they hated it that much.

  4. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar says:

    Patty Loveless sang a duet with this dude. (shakes head)

  5. TomNo Gravatar says:

    george michael gets cought on toilets. (doesn’t shake head, anymore)

  6. christyNo Gravatar says:

    I like the video, I think i has a lot of heart. You think that pretty “upper” class middle girls don’t have problems? It is exactly like every other country song, sad and heartfelt. I liked it a lot. Looks like he is loosing his girl at the end. SO I say good job Jimmy Wayne!!

  7. RainbowNo Gravatar says:

    I like this song, even if it is a pop song, which is what most of what Jimmy is. Despite this, he’s one of my favourite male singers. The video is embarassingly bad though.

  8. RainbowNo Gravatar says:

    I meant “which is what most of what Jimmy sings is.”

  9. Dan MillikenNo Gravatar says:

    Thanks for the props, Kevin and Tom!

    Chris D.,

    I’m not gonna lie; it was the CMT staff’s comments on the video that piqued my interest in reviewing it (though I probably would have anyway, just because the thing is so silly).

    Christy,

    I don’t mean to diminish the problems of pretty upper-middle class girls or models; I just find it interesting that those problems have become fodder for what used to be the music of the white working class (so much so that in the beginning, country’s official name was “hillbilly music”).

  10. I’m really getting tired of videos where they ing infront of a wall of flashing lights, it’s not original and it doesn’t look all that good either.

  11. SamB says:

    I actually quite like the song, but as a pop-rock song, there’s nothing country about it.I don’t really get why this kind of thing is promoted as country, when it totally isn’t.

  12. Tiffani McCarter says:

    Before you go judging this video and bashing it, I am the main girl in this video and I can really relate to it. I went to college on a tennis scholarship and gave up everything to persue my dream as a model. Luckily for me I have an amazing family to be there for me and support me no matter what. You may think this video is terrible, but me? I am very proud of it. I don’t care what any of you all say. Girls in Middle Upper Class have hard times too. Just because someone doesn’t come from a rough background doesn’t mean they dont have problems either. Have someone tell you you too fat for this industry. Have someone tell you you will never make your dream come true because you need bigger and whiter teeth, or you need to be taller and you’re too short. I hear that everyday. and I have a hard time paying my bills all the time. I am by no means middle upper class, although I came from a middle upper class family. I do live on my own… I have for 2 years now, 4 hours away from them struggling to become a model. Why do people judge a book by it’s cover all the time. Take a step back and view the situation from some one elses eyes. This video was perfect for me. I’m sorry you don’t appreciate the heart that was put in this video. I hope others can. :)

  13. Tiffani McCarter says:

    SamB: lets see you direct a music video. A lot more goes into it than you would ever imagine. Have a nice day.

  14. Tiffani McCarter says:

    sorry the last comment was meant for Jordan Stacey.

  15. Dan MillikenNo Gravatar says:

    Tiffani,

    Thanks for stopping by and commenting; I appreciate the very human perspective you have brought to the table here. Again, I hope no one thinks I don’t recognize that people from all walks of life face problems in their personal and professional lives; I just think it’s interesting that country music has gone from focusing on people on the poorer end of things to people who are somewhat more well-off and thus more able to pursue dreams like modeling. I certainly meant no disrespect toward models in general or you specifically; I don’t think I could last a day in your industry, even if I were good looking enough for it. :)

    I do still think it’s a poorly made video from an objective standpoint, mostly because the concept doesn’t seem to have much to do with the song (to me) and the dialogue makes the whole thing feel like a soap opera rather than a legitimate human struggle. That’s just my outsider’s opinion, and you can certainly take it with a grain of salt. I know personally that art often holds a different meaning to its creator than it does to others observing it, and I certainly wouldn’t try to take that away from you. In any case, I do really appreciate your stopping by and giving us your feedback (especially in such a respectful manner), and wish you the best of luck with your career!

  16. TomNo Gravatar says:

    it could have easily been a much better video, if the director had stuck to rule #1 for country music videos: put a chick in a bikini in it! then again, the pop song might have confused him.

    nonetheless, great pop music and wonderful sad looking faces, tiffani.

  17. Leeann WardNo Gravatar says:

    I don’t like pop music.

  18. J.R. JourneyNo Gravatar says:

    I like pop music – but not really any that was produced after 1989.

  19. Tyler ClarkeNo Gravatar says:

    George Michael is also a great singer and was quite famous in the 80′s era.,.*

  20. Leeann WardNo Gravatar says:

    Hmmm…I was being hyperbollic for the sake of saying that I don’t like this song because of its pop-ness, but I should clarify that there is some pop music that I shamelessly love.

  21. Jack EllsNo Gravatar says:

    Actually, this video tells a great story of a guy who loved a girl so much that he was willing to let her go follow her dreams, and be there for her, even though it meant losing her. Sounds like a country song plot to me. I rather enjoyed the song AND the video.

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