Entertainment (Audio) Interview with Lenny Kravitz documentary filmmaker, Mathieu Bitton
By The Bahamas Weekly News Team
Feb 4, 2013 - 12:49:00 AM
Mathieu Bitton Interview (47 mins.)
TheBahamasWeekly.com is please to present a Skype interview with artist, Grammy Award nominee and filmmaker, Mathieu Bitton recorded just days before the official premiere on January 29th, and iTunes release, of his film on Lenny Kravitz called, Looking Back On
Bitton joined up with us from Eleuthera where's he's been with Kravitz working on a project to commemorate the stars 25 year career in 2014.
The documentary follows the journey behind the making of Kravitz's recently
released 9th studio album, Black And White America. An in depth look at
the sessions that initially started out as a three-month recording
Looking Back On Love is a full-on rock and roll music
experience Bahamian culture in the film through a day-to-day look at Lenny's
life, and watch the artist create and record the songs at his newly
built Bahamian home studio, Gregory Town Sound in Eleuthera.
Listen as Bitton explains how he and Kravitz met, and shares experiences from the past 4 years he's been shadowing the megastar. Bitton talks about a few of the characters seen on the film from Eleuthera including the young girls seen in the trailer as well as Matty from the airport, and DJ Military, all from the island. "I gotta represent the Bahamian man...," says Kravitz in the film.
A huge talent in his own right, Bitton will share about his own background as an Art Director, Designer, Photographer, Director, Producer and Dadaist. Not only does he do filmwork and photography covering Kravitz' life between Paris and The Bahamas and on the road, he's taken the stars social media presence and catapulted into numbers now exceeding 3 million.
“Film is a natural medium for me,” Bitton says. “It's photography and sound mixed into one." French-born Grammy Award-nominated artist Mathieu Bitton is the filmmaker behind Looking Back on Love, a documentary film on Lenny Kravitz. Bitton met via Skype with The Bahamas Weekly News Team, Robbin Whachell and Davie Mackey for this in depth interview on January 28th, the same day the film released on iTunes and just a day before the premiere at USC in Los Angeles. "This is my life too," said Bitton who spent 4 years with Kravitz Photo: Polina Rabtseva
His film includes
exclusive interviews spanning two years and showcases the artist
discussing his creative process, his influences and the recording of the
songs themselves. The spotlight is also on Lenny's recording
techniques, showcasing his musical partner Craig Ross, New Orleans
legend Trombone Shorty, and long time collaborators, George Laks, Harold
Todd and Michael Hunter at work at Gregory Town Sound. The film also
features in depth examination of the album's title song; Lenny's
personal history about his upbringing in a mixed family, the election of
President Obama and the message of love that Lenny has been preaching
for over 20 years.
film also stars Craig Ross, Zoe Kravitz, Penelope Cruz, Javier Bardem,
Herman Leondard, The McPhees, Strombone Shorty, Harold
Todd, Michel Hunter, The Rebirth Brass Band, and George Laks.
"It deals with what's going on in my life, and it deals with what's going on in the world." says Lenny Kravitz about the film.
Mathieu Bitton, what you hear
and what you see are one in the same. Colors and music notes have
similar shades; lyrics and hand-drawn lines have similar emotional
messages. Each genre of music in Bitton’s collection has its own visual
world in his head – jazz takes on certain hues, while rock n’ roll is
another vibrant texture completely. For Bitton, one simply does not
exist without the other. And this special way of merging both mediums
is what has lead Mathieu Bitton to be one of the music world’s most
sought-after designers, creating album covers and packaging, as well as
videos, photographs, logos and more for some of the most iconic artists
and records of the last century, in addition to earning him a Grammy
nomination for his artistic achievement. His vast and incredible body
of work has seen him designing album art for a who’s who of musical
history, including Prince, Lenny Kravitz, Sting, Miles Davis (most
recently, he designed the incredible packaging to the Bitches’ Brew 40th
Anniversary Edition box set), Marvin Gaye, Jane’s Addiction, Bob
Marley, Quincy Jones, James Brown, Taylor Swift, Iggy Pop, Lou Reed,
Dolly Parton and many more. If there’s an album cover that moves you,
inspires you or impacts you, the odds are pretty high that Mathieu
Bitton created it. His acknowledgements include a 2010
Grammy Nomination; 2012 Chevalier De L'Ordre Des Arts et Des Lettres
(Knight of the order of arts & letter from the French republic); and a 2003
Find Mathieu Bitton on Facebook.
Looking Back on Love film poster outside the Ray Stark Theater at USC on February 29th, 2013, the night of the special invite premiere.
Photos from the premiere of Looking Back on Love at University of Southern California on January 29th, 2013. In the first shot is filmmaker, Mathieu Bitton with trumpet player for Lenny Kravitz, Ludovic Louis (grey jacket/hat); Bitton with With Vince Wilburn, Jr.(black jacket/hat); and Bitton with Q & A moderator J. Kevin Swain.
All Photos: Neftalie.com
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A passion for vinyl... Bitton will be featured in the film, "Long Playing: The Life, Death & Rebirth of Records Spinbridge." When asked "Why do you like records?" Bitton responds, "That's like saying, Why do you like breathing." Bitton is also in the film "Portrait of a Pimp" about Iceberg Slim.