Behind Lincoln & Aloe Blacc's "Love Is the Answer"


Some of the biggest names in the music industry were on stage at the Grammys on Sunday, but the best performance of the night was on your computer screen, provided you tuned into the groundbreaking interactive music video for Aloe Blacc’s Love Is the Answer presented by The Lincoln Motor Company. The latest hit by the ultra-smooth funk and soul singer got the high-tech treatment thanks to an all-star cast of technical and creative pros led by director team Radical Friend, award-winning creative agency Hudson Rouge and award-winning multimedia studio LEGS. The epic performance ditches the traditional music video to let viewers direct their own story, switching between multiple story lines and follow an audio and visual journey from four unique perspectives.

“In the first part of the film, we establish Aloe Blacc and the other three main characters and the grand setting with our cameras following seemingly disparate characters and members of the production,” director duo Radical Friend said. “They each have a unique involvement and perspective on the excitement that is building.”

The interactive player developed by Interlude lets viewers switch between each story at any moment, and if you time it right, you can even jump from one perspective to the next as characters converge. A director’s cut slides seamlessly between each perspective for you. But just as remarkable as the video story lines are the audio soundscapes that change along with each visual journey. Follow Aloe as he gets into an elevator, and the accompanying instruments drop off into an almost a capella-like performance that resumes into a full-blown musical production when the elevator doors slide open again.

In so many ways, Aloe Blacc is the perfect entertainer for this kind of project. From his roots as a hip-hop artist, Aloe has effortlessly slid into the spaces between R&B, jazz and funk with hits such as I Need A Dollar and a star turn on Avicii’s Wake Me Up. By partnering with Lincoln, Aloe is again pushing the boundaries of how people can experience music.

“I think that the most important thing for me is to tell a story that helps express the human condition,” he said. “I’m definitely always trying to think about how to make the sounds more rich, but this is an awesome way to make the visual interpretation of my music richer and fuller.”

The collaboration required to create “Love Is the Answer” is even more remarkable when you consider the entire project was planned and put together in just one month. "I can’t stress what a phenomenal effort this was on everyone’s part," said Hudson Rouge creative director, Jason Koxvold.

Choreographer Ryan Heffington knew exactly where to draw inspiration from for a cast that included more than 50 dancers. “I’m taking influence from James Brown a lot,” he said. “He was a big influence in the basic movements and the energy of what I’ve asked the dancers to do. I was showing the kids in rehearsal a James Brown live video from 1963, and I’m sure half of them hadn’t seen that and they were just like ‘Yeah!’ It was so organic and raw and something that people back then hadn’t seen before so it was nice to give them a sense of reference and to take that and say ‘This is the energy that I want.’”

Despite the time constraints and technical challenge of shooting extremely long Steadicam shots, everyone’s focus was on putting together a great experience for people to enjoy, said LEGS Executive Producer Adam Joseph: "At LEGS, we aim to push the boundaries of how performances are experienced. Instead of a two-dimensional relationship between performer and audience, we are making use of new technologies to engage people in a more interactive and stimulating way. Marrying video, art and music, this project allows its audience to be a part of the story, and the result is inspiring."

Or as Aloe Blacc put it: “Music makes people happy. My goal is to use my music to give people a chance to play, especially for adults who work hard every day. I get to be in the sandbox making music all day, so they can come home and forget about the hard work they’ve been doing and just relax in this sandbox that I’ve created for them.”

Experience Aloe Blacc’s #MusicUncovered at

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