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Despite Limitations, Schimmel Produces Dream Job

April 2, 2014 | By Dan Patton, Reel Chicago

Photo credit: AJ Kane

After logging 18 years on some of the most recognizable commercials to come out of LA, director Mark Schimmel got an offer for the type of job that he had dreamed about since getting into the business.

Although it had no budget, lacked the proper city shooting permits and required him to fill in for the shorthanded crew, he describes the resulting four-and-a-half minute short, “Sweet Home Chicago,” as “a great opportunity.”

“Sweet Home Chicago” was originally written and recorded by blues musician Robert Johnson in 1936.

Schimmel’s version of the song is a medley and a montage of almost 20 local musicians singing and playing the tune in 10 different locations throughout the city. Among the artists was Chicago’s Crystal Bowersox, the runner-up on the ninth season of “American idol.”


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