Filming commenced in February 2014 during my first trip to Knoxville. Since then four Big Ears Festivals have passed and countless trips between Knoxville and my home in North Carolina.

From the outset I didn't intend to define, specify or limit what this project is about, and I still don't. The festival and city would reveal themselves through the whims and fancies of a diverse set of eyes and ears... which is exactly what happened.

Many artists — cinematographers, audio recordists, writers and photographers — contributed to this project, their visions and sounds flowing through the film. These artists include Alex BoernerMika ChanceJem CohenLevon Henry, Kate JoyceCarter McCallJonna McKoneNick PratherLigaiya Romero, and Sam Stephenson.

I hope to complete this film in early 2019 — yet "complete" is the wrong word. The process of internalizing the experience, comprehending the footage, and trying to express this story will continue always.

Ivan Weiss
February 2018