“I’ve always been interested in what makes things fly, how things move forward”, Rathborne said on one hazy afternoon to George Augusto from DILETTANTE.
The video in question, “Peco’s Bill” is a piece meant to be combined with music, detailing the filmic record of the discovery of the jet engine in the 1940′s by Frank Whittle. “Peco’s Bill” is a newly recorded song by Rathborne for the occasion.
The song was recorded in Los Angeles with producer P.J. under a shared premise, “like the music was using the idea of a small one engine plane taking off and gaining speed,” says Rathborne. “Finally, the music opens, like how you see a plane taking off the ground and into the air.”
The video features an examination into the invention of jet propulsion, showing Whittle and his predecessors drawing and sketching, testing and failing, and ultimately succeeding in inventing the technology that ushered in the 21st century, jet propulsion, which redefined transportation and was utilized in everything from steam-powered trains to sending the first man into outer space.
“Peco’s Bill himself,” Rathborne says of the song’s namesake, “was a tall tale of a man, a giant in the folklore of American history. Together these ideas combine into a loose idea about America.”
Dropped off a wagon in the desert of New Mexico near the Peco’s River, Bill was reputedly raised by Coyotes and used a rattlesnake to lasso his enemies. He spent most of his life trying to woo his true love Slue Foot Sue and even shot down all the stars except one to get her favor.
“I always liked tall tales,” Rathborne said. “There’s stories about Peco’s Bill riding a mountain lion instead of a horse I used to hear as a kid. He used to lasso a tornado clear out of the sky to win the affection of his one true love, Sue.” Rathborne says. “I get a kick out of those stories, and there’s something there that resonates with the spirit of being an American.”
It is with this same spirit of invention that Rathborne sends us this special presentation of “Peco’s Bill” in hopes that certain ideals still remain, “it’s a dedication to invention, the whole spirit of the thing,” Rathborne says, “everyone has that will to create.”