Lana Del Rey has debuted her most involved video project yet with her chopper-happy, desert dreamscape, escapist music video for "Ride". Billed as a short film, the oft-debated singer screened the 10-minute video at a small independent theater inundated with hundreds of fans in Santa Monica, CA this week prior to premiering on Vevo.
Treating fans to the sneak peek, a casually-dressed Del Rey and director Anthony Mandler (who also did "National Anthem") appeared at the screening and held probably the most enthusiastic Q&A session I've ever seen in my life. Fielding questions from the excited teen audience like, "Will you go to prom with me?", "Can I get a photo with you?" and "Would you date someone like me?", the flabbergasted singer eventually discussed the influence behind the song and video, joking it was about her roots of "riding motorcycles and men."
Unlike her usual glamorous self, we see Lana Del Rey being more Lizzy Grant stylistically, traded in her classic Hollywood gowns and pressed 60s pencil dresses for more party-friendly looks. Having gone from 40s with "Born To Die" to 60s with "National Anthem", Del Rey comes up to the 80s with thrift store prom dresses, fringed jackets and flood of black curls that brings to mind Cher's "Turn Back Time" era. The song itself has elements of Stevie Nicks and
The monologue that bookends the video rivals that of Rihanna's "We Found Love" intro, and recounts the singer's own rise to fame and her unending search for self, freedom and becoming a "beautiful poet"--an incarnation she reiterated in the Q&A. Especially for a monologue that is quite long for a music video, her words, whether written by her or not, are incredibly moving. Truly, the video is stunning from every angle: the song, the monologue, the visuals, the bikes. Mandler's work perfectly captured the essence of the song and the singer and masterfully slips in elements of fantasy.
Turns out Lana Del Rey is a longtime motorcycle rider, but sadly only on the back seat. The beautiful vintage and chopped out Harley Davidsons featured in the video practically steal the spotlight from the singer (I even follow some of those bikers on Instagram). Del Rey told the crowd she attempted to learn to ride on a Kawasaki dirt bike, but it just never took. For those of you attempting to pick her up, Del Rey loves custom choppers, old Harleys and Triumphs as her preferred two-wheeled rides. Just writing this has me wanting to ditch out of the office and chase freedom on my own motorcycle!
"Ride" will appear on Lana Del Rey's upcoming Born To Die: Paradise Edition re-issue. The album will include nine new songs, which the singer described as being even better than the original tracks on her debut.
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