film & video
music video 2020
Brand-new collaboration between myself and Francine. Shot in the house during the first days of COVID, we interpreted the song in a variety of ways - but always the visuals are about being dissociated, and finding ways to avoid contact with memory and trauma...
In my song, I'm speaking from that bleak and troubled place all of us know, that feels utterly defeated... The place of "No-hope." Perhaps people are offering support, or solutions, but we just say, "Thanks anyway..." because we just don't want to hear it. No hopeful ending, no "get back on the horse..." - just done done done... It happens - and there's no shame in it.
Francine and I rented a wonderful, sun-drenched house in York, ME for 2 years - and we made this elaborate set-piece. We joked that I had to make a "prison" inside this light-filled space... Styrofoam and spray paint and 2x3's became a dark and dank background for the song about a man inside the prison of his mind... unable to tell dream from awake..
Director, Set design/construction, Editing by Tom Babbitt.
Co-Direction, Cinematography, Set dressing and Production by Francine Zaslow.
Music, Lyrics, Arrangement, Performance, Recording by Tom Babbitt
CHAMELEON MAN live
LIVE CONCERT FILM 2019
Live show filmed in September 2018, featuring 8 original songs and an extended version of ZZ Top's "Blue Jean Blues." The concert took place at SPACE 320in Newton, MA with a studio audience - and features musicians Marciani from Argentina (guitar and vocals); Pietro Gennenzi from Italy (bass); Juan Mejia from Colombia (drums): and Santiago Galeano from Argentina (Keyboards and vocals). Each of these monster players (and wonderful guys) are Berklee School of Music grads and accomplished composers, arrangers and bandleaders in their own right. Tom's animations, as well his films with Francine Zaslow were projected during the live show as well as integrated into the finished film.
ice station nine
One of the very first collaborations with Francine. We found someone's "room" (with bed and everything) under a bridge in Lewiston, ME which became a symbol for the main theme - that we think so very little of ourselves, and that this "Ice Station" of a post-apocalyptic world seems just normal... "Sure, it ain't much - but neither are you and me..."
Direction, Actor, Editing by Tom Babbitt.
Co-direction, Cinematography, and Production by Francine Zaslow. Shot on location in both Lewiston, ME and Lawrence, MA.
Natalie Babbitt: in memorial
Brief Tribute film
This is a short film shot by Francine and edited by myself. We played it for the assembled crowd at her Memorial Ceremony, and it was well received - a special moment for many of us. She was a powerful creative force and her writing will live on in the hearts and minds of readers for some time to come, no doubt.
Co-Directed by Francine Zaslow & Tom Babbitt. Editing and music by TB. Includes clips from the family archives over many years.
I just shot myself singing the whole thing through, then went to town using every imaginable idea - of continually morphing from one thing to another. My favorite part is when I've juxtaposed an older man's face onto mine, and the eye gets tricked for a moment about who's singing.
Direction, Acting, Editing, Music & Lyrics by Tom Babbitt.
Filmed on a beautiful private estate in Maine, this weird little experiment has a few memorable images that I treasure to this day. The rhythmic and repetitive montages in the instrumental section, the final scene, where I climb out of a stream I'm standing in, as thunder roars.
Direction, Acting, Editing by Tom Babbitt.
Cinematography, Set Design and Production by Francine Zaslow.
Actors: Tom Babbitt, Andrea Black
bleed 4 you
Abstract, animated meditation using stone as a metaphor throughout. Blood from stones... Strangely, I had the distinct feeling the song was about my one true Love, who I'd yet to meet... meaning it was written before I met Miss Z.
Animated by Tom Babbitt; Music, Lyrics, Performance, recording by TB