Another day, another music video. So goes the philosophy of prolific, java-loving, Delray Beach rapper Eric Biddines. He's the creator of a cool, creative growing sonic canon he calls Planetcoffeebean.
His most recent album, his fifth, is part of that growing body of work, though it doesn't include the word "coffee" in the title. In the midst of putting the finishing touches on Elephant Wings before he takes off for Austin's South by Southwest or makes an appearance on February 28 at Rolling Loud Festival in Miami, Biddines whipped up a video for his song "Purple Gold Fishes." He called his longtime music-video-directing collaborator, Ryan Snyder, to work on their eighth video together.
"I told Ryan, whatever you see, that's what I want the video to be," Biddines explained.
What resulted is a mix of battleground memories and dreamy shots of perfect swimming fish. "The budget wasn't there, 'cause it's not a single. We only had a third of the budget as we did for 'Railroads Down,'" he said.
Biddines is referring to his last music video, which was on heavy rotation on MTV Jams. So perhaps as a good-luck charm, and more likely out of necessity, they used leftover fireworks from that shoot for "Purple Gold Fishes."
They shot it all three weeks ago on a seven-hour shoot, saving money where they could, borrowing military gear and weapons from a friend's relative for the war imagery. In fact, the only props they really paid for were the fish.
But the fish were crucial to the meaning of the song, said Biddines. Purple Gold Fish is a character from the mythical, sci-fi world Biddines has created over his two Planetcoffeebean albums. "On Planetcoffeebean, there is a mythical fish that if you see it will give you power, motivation, and courage. It is a metaphor for finding whatever it is to get you through obstacles."
So has the MC, whose style has often been compared favorably to Outkast, faced any recent obstacles? "Yeah, geographic ones. Where we're located is an obstacle. Palm Beach isn't an industry-driven area. There ain't an artist on the scene getting cosigned."
His voicing these frustrations makes you wonder if the end of the video, where Biddines' character vanishes, might in fact be foreshadowing for his own relocation.
Biddines quickly made it clear that isn't so. "I'm stubborn. I'm not moving. The ending, my response to it is that it is all an illusion. Whatever you saw wasn't real. I'm a big fan, though, of open-ended concepts, so I've liked reading the comments and seeing everyone having their own interpretations."