My Favorite Music Videos, Part Fourteen: Jean-Luc Ponty’s ‘Individual Choice’

Today’s My Favorite Music Video offering, Jean-Luc Ponty‘s “Individual Choice,” is less about music and more about…travel.

This 1984 video starts out in New York City, where the Manhattan skyline is shown through the camera lens–at a much higher frames per second speed than normal. This effect runs throughout the entire video, finally returning to normal speed at the end.

This is one you’ll have to watch several times to see everything (I’m still picking things up).

Other cities shown include Chicago, Minneapolis, Los Angeles and Seattle.

The video was made by Louis Schwartzberg (see more of his work here). It’s another that I saw first on the overnight UHF channel “Odyssey” in the mid-80s.

When this video was released, Ponty joined Herbie Hancock (for “Rockit”) as the only jazz musicians to have made a music video.

Ponty is best known as a French jazz fusion violinist, who first appeared at the Monterey Jazz Festival in 1967. He was so well received that he was awarded a recording contract, and he returned to Europe where received “mounting praise and popularity.”

In the early 1970s he worked with Frank Zappa and Elton John in separate collaborations. At the urging of Zappa he emigrated to America, where he continued to tour the world and release critically acclaimed albums.


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