Cass McCombs’ New Video “Brighter!” Is A Tribute To Karen Black

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Songwriter Cass McCombs has debuted his music video for “Brighter!”, which is a tribute to late actress Karen Black. The song comes from McCombs’ seventh studio album Big Wheel And Others and features Black on vocals. The video is directed by her surviving husband, Stephen Eckelberry. You can watch it below along with reading a statement from Eckelberry.

Black appeared in many horror films, such as House Of 1,000 Corpses, Trilogy Of Terror, Children of the Corn: The Gathering, and more. She passed away after battling ampullary cancer on August 8th, 2013.

Eckelberry explains, “Cass McCombs emailed me in late November 2013 and asked if I would create a music video for ‘Brighter!’ – the song he recorded with Karen in December 2012 – using classic clips from her movies. It struck me as an opportunity to explore a theme that interests me – the relationship of film and memory. We watch a movie and the images from that movie become part of our memory stream.

My own memories of Karen are intertwined with memories of her in films – it gets messier for me since I directed several movies she was in – which memory is stronger; Karen during the making the film or what ended up on screen? An image came to me: Cass himself becoming a screen for the projection of images of Karen – as if his memories of her were playing themselves out over his body.

I found a clip I had shot with my iPhone when Cass was over at our house rehearsing the song with Karen, and I combined that with clips of her movies, some iconic, some more obscure, and I weaved in footage of fire, sparks, burning… The song does seem to deal with hell, or is it the hell of fame?