DVD release of “I RIDE”- A biker documentary by Daron Ker

I RIDE has just been released on amazon.com and you can find it at your local participating WalMart, but what I’d like to tell you here is my personal take behind the making of the film.

2011 I RIDE documentary Screening - Johnny Moreno - Daron Ker -  Marcus BrunoDocumentary filmmaking can be tough, unpredictable at times, and you have to capture it as best as possible every step of the way.

I’ve had the opportunity to take part in the making of Daron Ker’s “I Ride” and I would like to tell you my experience from the past to the present. There were moments that I had to endure and moments that I enjoyed behind the making of the film, because the physical path, the communications involved and the decisions made during filmmaking is what ends up shaping the story.
Initially I was introduced to Daron Ker and Marcus Bruno through Stephen Jang. We all had nine to five jobs and Daron was the only one at the time with funds to begin making a film about a biker band that played to America’s motorcycle culture movement. The inception to make I RIDE began by meeting the Fryed Brothers Band back in 2005.

I got involved as the production coordinator for the next filming of Sturgis Motorcycle Rally or Bike Week as some say -in Sturgis, South Dakota, in 2006. We stayed in a comfortable lounge-like basement room in a biker community home that is well known at the end of the Sturgis biker strip. We were there for a few days but our filmmaking process was short lived, and to be honest, very little story telling footage from 2006 made it into the film, except for creative artsy visuals that made for great transitions, dramatic montages and lead-ins. So there was a bit of fear and loathing due to the process of jumping into the Sturgis biker scene for the very first time. There was rawness, crazy fun, police officers everywhere and dangerous entertainment to be amused by or get caught up into with bikers rallying from all over the country. Then production frustrations and arguments amongst Daron, Cliff Traiman – the director of photography, and myself, came about. We argued about the films direction and what was our daily plan since there was no itinerary because things seemed to be happening on the spot. From what I knew about Daron – he operated on an organic level – I was open to this. However, I can only say that Cliff may have been more relaxed with a plan and I really don’t blame him – that’s how it should be done to some extent, but this was a play-it-by-ear type of documentary making process.
Through this experience we learned where we needed to be and what to get next year, which was specific interviews, the biker culture and the rawness of events. We just had to get these elements as a backdrop which richly cultured the surreal ambiance of the Americana biker life that the Fryed Brothers Band lived in. 2007 I RIDE - Harry Fryed - Daron Ker - RetrendersFor Sturgis 2007, things changed up a bit. We flew ahead of schedule to film some of the motorcycle clubs riding through Salt Lake City- Utah and through the state of Wyoming as they made their way to Sturgis – South Dakota. I really wish I had photos of this, but I was working and all I ended up with was these road trip photos on the downtime drive.
2007 Heading to Sturgis - Niels Juhr - Perry Auch - Ted AbalosThe production crew members I traveled with were Perry Auch, Niels C Juhr, Ted Abalos, Jeremy Protz and Marcus Bruno; a camera operator, a photographer, two sound technicians, and a production assistant/editor – respectively. This year we filmed multiple venues, events, locations, concerts, interviews and we were able to photograph ourselves as we enjoyed some down time from production. There was definitely a gritty, fun and raw side to Sturgis Week. I think it was special that we got to see things from a motorcycle club point of view since they gave us a place to stay and we were surrounded by them most of the time. 2007 I Ride Production - Daron Ker - Fryed Brothers Band - Niels Juhr - Perry Auch2007 ENJOY STURGIS COLLAGE - I Ride - Daron Ker - RetrendersThe only downside to 2007 was that I had to let go one of our audio engineers due to a lack of professional responsibility on his part. Sometimes I feel people misinterpret filmmaking as a fun and cool thing to do, and it is – but not when you disrespect the profession by not being attentive to your responsibilities on the film project.

After Sturgis 2007, there were a few other continuing productions for I RIDE that I was unable to attend, but for the most part it was continued by Daron alone with the exception of one crew member, Marcus Bruno. They did interviews and captured footage at Love Ride in Glendale, California, and followed Harry Fryed and the band to their personal homes and hometown locations to get more personal interviews about their lives.

2008 COLLAGE I-Ride wrap party Johnny Moreno - Daron Ker - Marcus Bruno - Ricardo - Shai - Harry FryedThen in 2008 I was invited to the Wrap-Up party in San Francisco’s North Beach Broadway Studios to celebrate capturing 90% or more of what could be a complete documentary at this point. The rest was left up to the editing process done by Robin Lee, where Daron  would be able determine if anything else was needed to polish the story telling off.
I personally thank Stephen Jang and Marcus Bruno for introducing me to Daron Ker, because if it wasn’t for them, I would have never had this great production experience and opportunity to meet great people from the biker community. I also congratulate Daron Ker for making a very unique film about the biker culture. Keep in mind, this all happened way before television cable programming got a hold of Full Throttle Saloon and capitalized on Sturgis Biker Week’s niche, nature and rawness of the biker world. To tell you the truth, what’s on television is simply a show, but I’ve heard some great stories on how Sturgis really came about as a community pit-stop for bikers living life on the road – “A place that was simply a home before hitting the road and a home to get to.”

For more information about Daron Ker and his productions, simply go to Water Buffalo Pictures.

You can purchase the DVD by clicking on either site: Amazon I RIDE  or Walmart I RIDE

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