When Declan Cassidy was editing his new 20-minute film “Displaced”, it occurred to him that using generic music in the background of three scenes in a barber shop would be a waste of an opportunity to showcase indie musicians. A call out on TikTok, inviting artists who were happy to have their songs play ‘on the radio’ in the film met with huge success. A diverse mix of seven artists now have their work in the film.
“The talent that came forward, willing to collaborate, was staggering,” enthuses Declan. “From the moment I decided to cast this film on social media, it’s been one highlight after another. Our cast and crew all came through over 5,500 applications on TikTok and now the film isn’t just a showcase for the actors and crew but for some simply amazing musicians too.”
The film, funded by Coimisiún na Meán, has a cast an crew screening this Saturday in Cineworld in Dublin, facilitated by Florian Zapra of Dublin International Short Film and Music Festival (https://www.disfmf.ie/). There those involved in the production will hear how the music of the six artists has become part of the soundtrack.
“Early in the process, a UK band – The Be-Aclectics – came forward and offered to write a theme song,” reveals Declan. “I sent them the script and they came back with Location, location, location which captures the film’s story wonderfully. That track is released on Saturday (October 7) to coincide with our cast and crew screening, along with a video that includes scenes from the film – some which are from my director’s cut.”
The Be-Aclectics music – and, after Saturday October 7th, Location, location, location – the theme for ‘Displaced’, can be found on the band’s Spotify account here: https://open.spotify.com/artist/1sXq96j50EFfANTGo4xAXg
Another artist who now features in the film is Lunn.
“Lunn had sent in music for the radio on the barber scenes,” explains Declan. “There were five tracks, if I recall properly, and they were not the type of music that would be playing on the radio in a barber shop. However, they were incredibly cinematic and I picked up the phone immediately and called Lunn.”
The result of that conversation saw two of Lunn’s tracks feature in ‘Displaced’.
“If you visit Lunn’s Spotify account and listen to any of his music, you’ll see what I mean by ‘cinematic’,” said Declan. “The tracks that I chose for the film are T’as de beaux yeux, tu sais… and Smokey Dancer. I really believe that Lunn has a future in writing for film and, don’t forget – you saw it first here!”
Lunn’s music wasn’t alone in finding a home outside of the barber shop scenes.
“Paul Francis Kelly is a Dublin artist based in London,” explains Declan, “who had sent a link to a staggering number of tracks. Listening to them I finally understood the meaning of the word ‘prolific’. There was one track – Little Fires – that gave me a ‘eureka’ moment. I thought of a scene in the film where the protagonist, Stefan, goes into a ‘cash for stuff’ place to sell a family heirloom but is met by a counter attendant who has no time for him. I felt that the energy of the track would make a fabulous contrast to the dismay of Stefan. I spoke to Paul and he was really supportive. I’m delighted to have his music in the film.”
Declan’s original shout-out to musicians was for music that might be playing on the radio in the three scenes in that take place in the barber shop – filmed at The Dublin Barber in Irishtown – and the huge response gave him plenty of tracks to choose from.
“The first track that I chose was from Blair Witch House from their 2022 EP ‘Flutter’,” reveals Declan. “The track, Faking Sleep, has a grungy feel that I love. It’s in the first of the three scenes, when Sara – the main protagonist in the film’s second storyline – is unaware that her world is about to be shaken and the up-tempo track works so well for that mood.”
The second track features in The Skatuesques – who have very recently called it a day – with a song from Arianna Siliprandi who played bass with the band.
“The track, Feeling Free, features in the second barber shop scene, just before Sara gets bad news,” explains Declan. “It captures Sara’s mood perfectly and helps set up the crash that’s about to happen. I was chuffed when Arianna came forward and said that we could use the song. I know Arianna through my tv series ‘Romancing Ireland’ where she featured in the Italian episode. I knew she played bass but I had no idea she also wrote.”
Half way through the scene, one song ends and another begins. This track, New Direction, is from Dublin-based New Yorker, Brew. Brew is both a musician and actor and the sentiment of the song is apparent from the title.
“Sara, in the film, gets news, as the track plays in the background, that leaves her considering a new direction,” explains Declan. “It’s a pivotal point in the second storyline so Brew’s music fits like a glove.”
The final barber scene features the Irish phenomenon that is Limerick-born artist RaYche-P.
“When I was going through all of the tracks that had been submitted by musicians, I was quite literally stopped in my tracks by RaYche-P,” enthuses Declan. “The passion and lyrical genius that jumps out from her music was so inspiring. I chose the track Blood Ties from her debut EP Bigotry and Blood because, for me, it was about the tricky relationship that we have with our Irishness. In the film, Sara’s tricky relationship with her girlfriend Catey is at make or break point.”
The cast and crew, along with those of the musicians who can make it, will see the finished film for the first time at the cast and crew screening on October 7th. The general public will have to wait to catch it on TV, in the cinema or at a festival.
“it’s been a collaborative project from the very start so I’m waiting for the cast and crew to ‘sign off’ on it before I start distributing the film,” explains Declan. “Keep an eye out here, though, if you want to see it. I’ll be keeping everyone up to date with where it’s screening.”