Blogs » Victoria Film Festival » JAM Fest Screening April 13th, 2012


UNSIGNED Directed by: Edward Payson

A documentary that follows three bands that refuse to give up on their dream of making it big over the course of one year that will change everything. Follow ‘Fight Friendly’, ‘Paul Nagi’ and, ‘The Muddy Reds’ as they balance their rock n’ roll aspirations with the hardships and realities of daily life in this documentary that dares you to follow your own dreams and shows the power of never giving up on what inspires you.

Director Statement

Have you ever asked yourself, “ What would it have been like if I had followed my dreams?” This is a question many Americans ask themselves every day while working a job that they hate. In 2009 I graduated college in one of the worst financial meltdowns the country had ever seen. A job in the film business was already hard to come by out of college and with a crumbling economy it was next to impossible to get my foot in the door. I had two films with budgets lined up but I got tired of waiting for producers to give me the green light and after a year of the hurry up and wait game, I decided to try something different. A documentary could be made for cheap. I had never made a documentary, hell I really only had tried my hand at horror films, but I was determined. One day while sitting in cubicle hell, I decided I needed to tell the story of the underdog but the idea of making it about bands didn’t hit me until I was sitting around after a film screening with my friends Gino Devaney and Brandon Scullion. Brandon was my roommate and is a connoisseur of music. Gino went to school for radio and like me moved to California from New Hampshire to follow his dreams. That night the idea of “Unsigned” was born around a table at a Mexican restaurant.

I decided the film should focus around three bands and their everyday struggles. I put an add out on Craigslist and started looking for bands. In the first day I had over 40 responses. From that day I picked the Muddy Reds, a Southern, Blues style rock band that knows how jam in a retro funk kind of way. Throughout the week more responses came in slowly.. From there I picked two more bands, Paul Nagi, a dark new wave Indie solo act with heart felt lyrics and killer guitar rifts. After 2 more weeks I found Fight Friendly, an indie pop punk band with catchy choruses and an unmatched energy. All the pieces of the puzzle fell into place and filming began. The film evolved into something bigger than I ever thought it could be. The story of these bands went in a direction I could never have foreseen and we have all changed because of it.