The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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A&M ‘Shake It Off’ video goes viral

Photo by Dee Huggan Juniors Ryan Brainard (left) and Andres Pascal created the A&M “Shake It Off” video, which has received more than 53,000 YouTube views.

Katie Canales, assistant life & arts editor, sat down with Ryan Brainard, electronic systems and engineering technology junior, and Andres Pascal, engineering technology junior, the makers of the Texas A&M “Shake It Off” video, which had more than 53,000 YouTube views at press time Sunday. Brainard and Pascal asked students in the MSC to do their favorite dance — without any music — and played Taylor Swift’s “Shake if off” over the resulting video compilation.
THE BATTALION: What made you decide to make this video?
Ryan: I did one that was in the vein of the same thing in high school and it was really popular in terms of everybody really having a blast doing it. I wanted to do a new one and we were going to do it to “Fancy” by Iggy Azalea until Taylor Swift had hers and it fit way better.
Andres: [Ryan] is the one who told me about it. He had the idea since a semester ago. Last week he was like, ‘Can I take your camera to campus?’ And I was like, ‘Sure.’ And that morning we did it and uploaded it.
THE BATTALION: What message did you want to send by making this video?
Andres: When [Ryan] had originally told me about the idea, he wanted to do it specifically during finals.
Ryan: Yeah, it was more of a stress-relief type thing.
Andres: During finals we were going to do it and then we got super swamped. But the first week of school, all the freshmen are coming in and transfer students. I was a transfer student myself last year, so I think the beginning of the year is almost as good as during finals week.
THE BATTALION: Why this song in particular?
Ryan: Taylor Swift is America’s sweetheart. Taylor Swift is always awesome. Whatever song that comes out, I will blare it in the car and everybody hates it. And then she came out with one about people dancing and I was like, ‘Yes!’
Andres: She makes really good songs when it comes to catchiness. So as soon as the song came out, we saw it as a very good contestant to be the selected one.
THE BATTALION: How did you approach people and ask them to do this?
Ryan: That was the hardest part. One of our friends, James Belcher, he’s a senior in the Corps, and we asked people and they did it but it was so much funnier to watch when he would slide on his boots and get right in front of people and ask them that way. And it was so funny and they were already laughing. We put that on the description [on YouTube] — ‘Thanks Belcher.’
Andres: As we were standing there and asking people, you start to understand the equation — let’s call it the equation — to get the right person to do it. For example, if you see someone coming down the MSC smiling with music already on, and you stop them and ask them if they want to dance for five seconds, they’re already in the mood. They’re ready, they’re already dancing in their minds — they just need to do it now physically. The others that we always asked and always said yes were groups.
Ryan: They would say, ‘You go do it,’ and they made their friends do it. We guilted a lot too because we were like, ‘Aggies commit to fun, come on.’
Andres: We wanted to show off the fact that Aggies were always willing to give out a hand to each other.
THE BATTALION: What kind of feedback have you gotten since uploading the video?
Ryan: The first night we went to sleep and it was about 1,000 views and then we woke up and it was, like, 17,000.
Andres: It was really, really impromptu — the entire process took less than 24 hours since we decided to do it that day to when it was posted. A lot of my friends are asking me where is the next location.
Ryan: We want to do it again, but the next time we do it, we want to post, ‘Hey, be here at this time,’ like two days in advance. If you want to be in it, be in it. And we want to do it at other recognizable portions of A&M.

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