The music video for Michael Weatherly's song 'Under the Sun' was released on the internet on October 9th via Yahoo News and VEVO. The video was previewed last night on omg!insider during an interview with the NCIS actor.
'Under the Sun' is one of the tracks featured on the third NCIS Soundtrack album, 'Benchmark', which was released on iTunes and Amazon on September 24th, the same day of the series season 11 premiere.
The beginning of 'Under the Sun' is reminiscent of Filter's 'Take a Picture' from their 2000 Title of Record album. Upon repeated listens, there are echoes of a slower, deeper 'Fountainheart' by '90s underground storyteller Damien Youth. All credit to Weatherly, though, for crafting a definite ear worm of a tune; hear it once or twice, and 'Under the Sun' will play on repeat in your head. The lyrics, which at first seem trite, play perfectly into the Anthony DiNozzo/Ziva David dynamic - especially in light of the recent 'Past, Present, Future' NCIS episode.
The video is artsy: breathtakingly beautiful and filmed with filtered light and close ups of the photogenic Weatherly seeming, by turns, confused, apprehensive, brooding, heart broken, and finally, accepting. Nighttime outdoor scenery looks to be New York City but the light through the trees in daylight remind one of a sunny Latin Quarter street in Paris. The hotel setting feels a little like 'Groundhog Day', with Weatherly's abandoned character waking up in the same position three times, each time with a slightly different expression discovering an envelope left on his pillow - sadly empty. A metaphor for DiNozzo's relationship with Ziva? Walking away with nothing after whatever was (or wasn't) between them? The video inspires more questions than answers, which is exactly as it should be: the story being told is left to the viewer's imagination.
Weatherly has a pleasant singing voice, and is instantly identifiable as the vocalist as soon as the lyric begins. His previous contribution to an NCIS Soundtrack, 'Bitter and Blue', was retro and loungey, delivered in a semi-spoken baritone. Two very different approaches, and the actor/director acquits himself nicely as a competent singer - but 'Under the Sun' seems the more comfortable if one has to choose between vocal registers and musical stylings. Weatherly is said to have done some busking in the subway back in the early days of his career and still writes, sings and plays music - though one wonders how he finds the time.
Back on August 9th, Weatherly tweeted a still photo from the 'Under the Sun' music video in the midst of posting about filming Cote de Pablo's NCIS farewell scenes. Which came first, the chicken or the egg? I had guessed that the song was written before the 'Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot' and 'Past, Present, Future' scripts were crafted. After all, it was early July when news broke that de Pablo wouldn't be returning to NCIS, causing a rewrite of the original premiere. And in fact, Weatherly started writing the song sometime in 2001 after 9/11 about his relationship with his son. As noted in an interview with Music Times published Oct. 16, Weatherly dusted off the tune and brought it back out for the NCIS Benchmark soundtrack, since it's meanng could easily be applied to the DiNozzo-David push and pull.
'Under the Sun' and the NCIS Benchmark Soundtrack are available online at iTunes and Amazon. The song has been in Top-20 rotation playing every three hours or so on John Lobban Radio.net, and they were the first radio station to play 'Under the Sun'. International fans may have better luck hearing the song there if they are unable to get YouTube access.
What do you think of Michael Weatherly's 'Under the Sun' song and video? Would you like to see more music from the versatile actor/director? Comment below or email me with your thoughts.
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