Vienna-based Austrian singer songwriter Ina Regen has just released the official music video for her new single ‘Paris‘. The second solo song this talented artist has released and one that, hopefully, will become as big of a hit for her as her debut single ‘Wie a Kind‘.
And, before I talk about Ina Regen’s ‘Paris‘, I first have to be honest by saying, when I watch her music videos, I have no idea as to what she is singing about. German not being a language I understand much of, and Austrian-dialect German none at all.
But in some respects, that is also what I love about Ina’s work, as it makes me concentrate on the music and the music video, rather than the meaning of it all.
In other words, I get to create my own meaning and, after all, isn’t that really what music is all about? Relating to it because it has meaning for you?
Ina Regen’s music and music videos
What is also wonderful about Ina’s work is the old-fashioned, whimsical, melancholic, almost dream-like quality she seems to have in all of it. A quality that fits Ina perfectly seeing as how she is, in one respect, a thoroughly modern Austrian woman but, in another, quite old-fashioned herself.
Of course, when I say ‘old-fashioned’, I don’t mean ‘not stylish’ because heaven knows Ina has more style in her little finger than I have in my whole body.
No. Instead it is a commentary on how Ina has this air about her that I see in many Austrians. An air that fits in well with the past. When people were more gentile, more polite and treated each other with respect.
That same lovely quality also shows up in all her work. Songs and music videos that seem to fit into an earlier time just about as well as they do here.
Ina Regen’s ‘Paris‘ music video
Look at ‘Paris‘, for instance, that gorgeous melody, her phenomenal voice, and that stunning music video created by Dockyard GmbH, with concept and direction by Georg Blume (equally talented brother of the fabulous Clara Blume).
Doesn’t it remind you of something that, by rights, belongs in one of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials series of books? Or in a movie like Amélie?
After all, it fits perfectly into that type of world — a world of elegance and beauty, but one also made up of things that look familiar but with elements that do not really belong . At least in the way we understand them to belong.
And you know Ina Regen’s music video for ‘Paris‘ is going to be something that is more than likely right out of this kind of world when, as the video begins, the rain is falling upwards.
The video cuts to Ina, wearing a red coat and standing alone in an empty bath tub in between two other tubs containing a toy train and an artist’s palette.
This dimunitive figure (and, yes, she is teeny tiny), then reaches out to touch the upward falling rain, seemingly just as surprised by it as we are.
Stepping out of the bath tub, Ina begins to walk through a grand old building. One of those buildings Vienna has in abundance, more than anywhere else in the world.
The video then moves to an old man sitting on a bed clutching an artist’s palette. A palette that hasn’t been used for many years. Followed by a similar image, but this time a young boy also sitting on a bed, but holding an old-fashioned steam train. Both of them looking incredibly sad.
Ina, however, is about to change all that as, by playing a few notes on an abandoned piano, she releases ink from the sheet music left there. Ink transformed into a magical energy that travels throughout the building, giving life to the old man’s artist fingers and to the boy’s antique train set.
Before long, the man is painting for the first time in many years, the boy’s trains are traveling all over his once empty and melancholic room, and soon they are both together standing on a stage with the artist’s painting now finished and the boy’s train as part of that painting. Man and boy take a bow together to an empty theater.
And you wonder, are these two the same person? Just separated by age, experience and loss?
The video comes to an end with Ina, still in that red coat, walking into an empty ballroom only to see an enormous whale swimming through the air. As she reaches up in delight to stroke the whale, the scene eventually changes to her standing in front of the painting of the boy’s train the artist has created. And she smiles.
(And just two of my thoughts on this — That red coat is a stroke of genius, as it not only draws the eye to her, but also makes that tiny figure seem so magically powerful.
And look at that scene with the artist, as paint flows from his fingers and he waves his arms almost like he is conducting an invisible orchestra as he paints. That scene, coupled with the ecstatic look on the artist’s face as he is suddenly able to do what he has not done for so long, made me cry).
The real meaning behind Ina Regen’s ‘Paris‘
Of course, I can imagine any meaning I like behind Ina Regen’s ‘Paris‘. The reality is, however, the song does have a real meaning, at least as far as the artist is concerned.
That meaning, according to Ina who recently spoke to Austrian newspaper Heute about ‘Paris‘ is this:
Heute: Why Paris? Do you have a special relation to this city?
Ina: We hear ‘Paris’ and immediately think of the city of love. That is why ‘Paris’ is a figurative destination in the figurative sense, to which a couple has left to realize at some point that the road to it has become too difficult. So, in ‘Paris’, I describe the moment when you realize you are trapped in an illusion of love that gradually feels like a lie. It has been my experience that the moment in which one then finds the courage to face one’s own truth with all the pain also releases a great deal of hope and strength, because one finally feels again who one really is.”
As for the lyrics of Ina Regen’s ‘Paris‘ — they are available in the YouTube description of Ina’s music video for the song. They are in Austrian dialect, however, so unless you are Austrian or speak the dialect well, I’m not sure even putting them through Google Translate will help.
You can download or stream Ina’s gorgeous new song ‘Paris‘ from a number of online music services from this link. And you can, of course, watch that stunning music video by Dockyard below.
The song itself was written by Ina Regen, Florian Cojocaru, and Michael Wittner.
‘Paris’ is from Ina Regen’s upcoming debut album KLEE, which will release on November 2nd. You can pre-order it here.
And all I have to add to this is that song is gorgeous, Ina (those strings, that melody, your voice!!) and, I am sure, will be another massive hit for you.
And Georg, and the folks at Dockyard, good heavens you did yourselves proud! Because that music video is one of the most beautiful I have ever seen.