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Arts / Baltasound provides inspiration for DJ

A live DJ set will be filmed in Unst, while social media ‘influencers’ will head north to take footage for music video

Marco Dalla Villa.

WHEN London-based DJ and producer Marco Dalla Villa was searching for songwriting inspiration during lockdown, he turned to Google Maps for help.

In a modern way of closing your eyes and pointing to a location on a map, the Italian clicked to randomly drop a pin on the digital world.

It happened to land on Baltasound in Unst – and since then he has written a song about the northerly village, and is set to visit there in the coming days to film a live DJ set.

It also coincides with two eagles which recently were used in Unst to film bird’s eye view landscape shots of the island.

That footage will be used in a music video alongside video clips taken in Unst by two social media ‘influencers’ who will be exploring the island with GoPro cameras.

“I discovered Baltasound during lockdown, when it was not possible to travel, by exploring Google Maps while trying to find inspiration for a new song,” the musician said.

Photo: Chris Cope/Shetland News

“I threw the ‘Street View’ yellow pin and it randomly landed in Baltasound. After that, I explored the place with Street View, finding inspiration in the secludedness and beauty of the most northern Island in the UK. From that moment, I have been dreaming of visiting the Shetland Islands.”

Dalla Villa and his team will be in Shetland between 18 and 21 June to capture video in Unst, and a live DJ set from the musician will take place as part of the project.

“For the release of the song, I am coming to the Island that inspired it, to record a live in person DJ set in the middle of nature and shoot the music video,” he explained.

“The concept behind both the live set and the music video is to explore and describe the island from different points of view: from the POV of an eagle, of a motorbike rider, and of a runner. Our team was recently in Shetland producing footage with eagles, in Unst, using GoPros mounted on the bag of the eagles, to capture the ‘eagle’s point of view’.”

Triumph Motorbike ambassador and photographer Andrea Astarita – who has over 220,000 followers on Instagram – will take footage of himself biking in Unst, while “running influencer” Flora Beverly will take video while on foot.

“The footage from their GoPros and the footage from the eagle overflying the landscape of Baltasound will be transmitted to the led screen below my DJ set,” Dalla Villa said.

“The highlights of this experience will be used to create the music video as well.”

In addition, travel vlogger Christianne Risman – who runs the YouTube account Backpacking Bananas – will be “reporting the full adventure, live from the field”.