Do "The Dangle"! It's Joyfully Ridiculous
Adnan Safadi didn't want to set expectations too high, but his goal was to have the music video shoot he was producing be the most fun project he and his friends had ever worked on. Turns out, it was.
This sheer enthusiasm is palpable on "The Dangle," a joyfully ridiculous music video that finds Safadi and friends dancing around various Los Angeles locations and Safadi rapping about having fun, wilding out "lookin' kinda dumb" and "gettin' hella juice." Released on August 19, "The Dangle" quickly racked up 74,000 views on YouTube, making it a surprise success for everyone involved in its creation.
Safadi, a Santa Monica-based musician with a theater degree from UC Santa Cruz, conceived of "The Dangle" six months back while dancing around his bedroom. "I'm turning red just thinking about it," he says with a laugh, "but I thought, 'I should make a fun rap song.'"
And so he wrote "The Dangle," the comedic hip-hop style of which is decidedly different from the ambient electronica he typically produces. "Hip hop was uncharted territory for me," he says. "It helped me let go of my inhibitions because I was embracing a genre where I didn't feel obligated to make good music. The whole project became about fun, rather then good or cool. It was really liberating."
The style fit perfectly with the ethos of Thomas Johnson, a Hawthorne-based dancer best known as Tommy the Clown. Johnson is credited as the creator of clowning/krumping, a dance phenomenon documented in David LaChapelle's 2005 film RIZE. "When I saw RIZE and thought about who would best represent 'The Dangle,' it was Tommy, this guy who was all about community, clowning, making people happy, spreading a positive message and creating a platform for kids to express themselves," Safadi says.
So Safadi tracked down Johnson and asked if he could be a spectator at a party Tommy and crew were dancing at. This meeting resulted in Johnson and ten of his dancers adding their flavor to "The Dangle" video. "It was really us being ourselves," Johnson says. "To me, the dangle is about being free, letting yourself go and having some fun, which is what we like doing."
And what exactly is The Dangle?