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Naked bikers needed for Flaming Lips music video to be shot in Portland next week

Posted by on September 16th, 2009 at 5:31 pm

Art Bike Parade at Cirque du Cycling-58

The flash of naked riders
is an annual sight in Portland
(Photo © J. Maus)

The World Naked Bike Ride doesn’t roll around again til June, but Portlanders will have a chance next week to ride naked around Mt Tabor as part of an upcoming Flaming Lips music video.

I spoke about the shoot, set for Wednesday, with Flaming Lips lead singer Wayne Coyne during a break in preparing for the band’s appearance tonight on the Colbert Report.

Coyne was enthused about his plan. He said he got the idea from the scene at the end of the musical Hair: “You know how it’s a bunch of freaked out naked people climbing some mountain with blood and fire and finding some new civilization there — so I thought of Portland, right?”

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Coyne went on, “So I read a couple stories about the naked bicycle riding. I know Jillian [Kelsheimer Sevick, former BikePortland neighbor and currently merchandising manager for the Flaming Lips] from Portland and thought — I wanna do it for a video.”

The plan for the shoot makes Portland’s annual naked bike events sound fairly run of the mill. “I’m having one of my giant space bubbles covered in fake fox fur,” Coyne said. “Its going to look like some giant fur egg, and the people on bicycles are gonna sort of be born and erupt out of this fur, vaginalistic thing.”

Coyne in a “giant space bubble”
(Photo by Flaming Lips)

As with other naked rides, the event is meant to be freespirited rather than lewd, Coyne said. “There’s a difference between pornography and just freaks who are naked. This is about unrestricted freedom and a good lawlessness that’s always sort of implied at our shows.”

The video is being made for the final song, called “Watching the Planets,” on the Flaming Lips’ upcoming album appropriately titled Embryonic. The song is “an epic…march, almost. It goes on this hypnotic groove,” Coyne said. The video’s concept is still emerging: “Maybe I’ll even get naked for the video, too. I don’t even know how it ends — maybe it ends with them all getting clothed and making me get naked and shoving me back into the giant fur egg. I just came up with that right now.”

The shoot is from 10am to 10pm on Wednesday, September 23rd. Participation is on a drop-in basis. The sign-in table will be the basketball courts near the top of Mount Tabor.

Here’s what the crew is looking for (via an email from Sevick Kersheimer):

For the sake of the shoot we would rather no tall bikes or abnormally small bikes, it’s just easier on the camera guy, George. Though if some show up I’m sure they will figure it out. We are looking for things to be as natural as possible so we are discouraging costumes and body paint. Though if people want to make themselves shiny with baby oil or something, that will play off the lights well!

Shooting will go on all day, so participants can join the fun for the entire 12 hours, or just drop by for an hour or two. No RSVP is required, just show up (clothed, please!) with valid ID.
There you’ll be greeted by Coyne and the Flaming Lips crew, who will set you up with a release form, a sign up sheet, and a secure area to stash your clothes.

Coyne says that the video should be available for viewing within about two weeks after the shoot, “so long as i don’t get arrested and nobody gets hurt.” The record is set to be released in the second week of October, and this is one of there or four music videos they’re hoping to release concurrently.

Event details:
Flaming Lips naked bike video shoot
Wednesday, September 23, 10am – 10pm (drop-in)
The top of Mount Tabor, by the basketball courts
No RSVP needed. Just show up wearing clothes, please.
For more information, contact: bikeforthelips at gmail dot com

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  • matt September 16, 2009 at 5:33 pm


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  • Silky Slim September 16, 2009 at 5:43 pm

    I suppose this will be my warm up for the Blind Date at the Dairy cross race!

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  • Caroline September 16, 2009 at 5:46 pm

    Oh dear.

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  • Carl September 16, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    Wayne Coyne with all his Zoobomber friends and rap music DOES NOT represent regular everyday bikers! How dare he?!

    (This sounds awesome. I want a giant egg covered in fake foxes.)

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  • John Lascurettes September 16, 2009 at 5:54 pm

    Sounds like fun. I’ll have to check my PTO balance.

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  • Gabriel September 16, 2009 at 6:25 pm

    I hope they are prepared for 10,000+ rider to show up.

    This is Portland, after all…

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  • April September 16, 2009 at 6:30 pm

    I’M THERE. Period. End of story.

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  • Justa September 16, 2009 at 6:38 pm

    HA! Awesome.

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  • CMark September 16, 2009 at 7:05 pm


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  • Anonymous September 16, 2009 at 7:22 pm

    I’m out. The world is not ready to see that…

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  • yvette patangan September 16, 2009 at 7:54 pm

    ohhh wow thats very interesting something to see thats for sure

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  • Free to be you and me September 16, 2009 at 8:13 pm

    quote: if people want to make themselves shiny with baby oil or something, that will play off the lights well!

    cool. there is no shame in the human body. But in San Francisco the problem with Baker Beach was that it was an easy target for some people with mental heath issues watching from far and sometimes too close. Given this is public property, how is the band going to keep things safe if some dude shows up and causes trouble?

    Time to shed 5 pounds.

    The free thing about the world naked bike ride is the safety. The whole group is a moving target, and if someone causes you discomfort, it is very easy to go slower or faster and not see them again.

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  • Tbonesteak September 16, 2009 at 8:15 pm

    Is it required to be completely naked?

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  • Will September 16, 2009 at 8:46 pm

    Ohh my, what am i going to wear?

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  • Hart September 16, 2009 at 8:52 pm

    Time to wax the brownstar.

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  • Metrofiets September 16, 2009 at 9:01 pm

    I love this town!

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  • Liz September 16, 2009 at 10:48 pm

    Sounds perfect for Burning Man decompression!

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  • September 16, 2009 at 11:10 pm

    After the mind-blowing show they threw down for us at Edgefield in August, I think we owe ’em this much. We’re there, Coyne. Just tell us where to stash our pants.

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  • NT September 16, 2009 at 11:27 pm

    It would be great to see a good turnout for this. Sure there were a few thousand during the midnight ride this year, but only about 50 at the midday ride. Be brave people! Tell your friends!

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  • Andy B from Jersey September 16, 2009 at 11:30 pm


    That headline is so Portland.

    I’m jealous!

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  • vantucky matthew September 16, 2009 at 11:55 pm

    will i not get arrested for doing this?

    yea… i was the nekkid guy cuffed & stuffed in vancouver on todd’s aloha low bar crawl. the 1st time i’ve been arrested (yes i was booked nude) and i’d like to think i’m not a repeat “offender”.

    my next court date is monday the twenty-first. to the folks that were on the ride~my public defender would like your name & phone # so you can state to my intent. please contact or leave a message with neil anderson (my public defender) at 360 906-7234 if you are willing to go to bat for me.

    if you are opposed to this sort of freedom of expression…. my bare ass would like to give you a big smooch!

    many thanks, matthew

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  • solid gold September 17, 2009 at 1:09 am

    seriously, there’s gonna be like 10000 people that show up i bet. tabor is going to be like a frickin nuthouse! which, of course means i’ll show up.

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  • tyler travis September 17, 2009 at 2:21 am

    @solid gold… hahaha NUTHOUSE!

    I’ll be there!

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  • are September 17, 2009 at 7:32 am

    the so-called “nude scene” in the musical hair is at the end of the first act, before the intermission. a simple be-in in central park, no climbing of mountains or blood or fire or new civilizations.

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  • true September 17, 2009 at 8:44 am

    vaginalistic is my new favorite word.

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  • […] In Portland, naked bicycling is only a shade less popular as a local passtime than hanging out at the farmers market. We don’t really see the appeal, but rock n’ roll band Flaming Lips does — they’re soon a video in PDX and are looking for lots of “freaked out naked people” on bikes. (Bike Portland) […]

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  • f5 September 17, 2009 at 9:54 am

    #12: Call me crazy, but I would bet that most any film or video shoot is going to have security. The film industry temporarily gathering to shoot a production is quite different than a nude beach. Just a hunch.

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  • Jamie September 17, 2009 at 11:20 am

    See you there PDX!!!

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  • rev September 17, 2009 at 2:47 pm

    most extras just stand around a lot. rather than just roll for 100 feet and have it end perhaps we can organize a more substantial ride afterward.

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  • Joe Adanski September 17, 2009 at 4:07 pm

    vantuckymatt #21… I spoke with your attorney and he tells me he specificaly needs to talk to someone who was with you at the time of arrest.Since I wasn’t,I could offer little help. Anyone who was on the ride in question who was near Matt and witnessed the arrest, please call his attorney,listed above in post #21.
    That said, I am glad Oregons Constitution regards nudity as a form of expression. And I am happy the Flaming Lips are doing this shoot in Portland, not across the river. We can be pretty smug about nudity here, but it aint so everywhere. I bet even with the Oregon Constitution, police in Gresham or Roseburg would respond more like their Vancouver counterparts.

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  • gilly September 17, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    KEXP just played a new Flaming Lips song and mentioned this on air.

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  • Chris September 17, 2009 at 7:39 pm

    Oh man… I need to get back home!

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  • pu September 18, 2009 at 12:09 am


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  • erine September 19, 2009 at 4:04 am

    oh…i am jealous…will have to ride around psp in your honor…lucky pdx.

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  • Glenn September 19, 2009 at 4:19 pm

    Remember what happened when Dave Chappelle showed up in Portland and told a few people about it. There are going to be a LOT of people here. Please stay home if you’re not up for getting naked.

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  • […] if you want to get naked for a Flaming Lips video, check this out. […]

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  • Holly D. September 20, 2009 at 6:10 pm

    I have a lot of personal appearance issues. I’m a bit overweight and I’ve hated my body for most of my life now. But for some reason, I find myself unable to find a feasible reason not to do this. I am so excited for this, it gets my heart rate up.

    Thank you, Flaming Lips, for giving me the perfect reason to kick myself in the right direction of positive self-esteem!

    Now, if only I could convince someone to go with me…

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  • […] you’re interested, BikePortland has all the details. I’m assuming Win Butler isn’t invited, right […]

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  • […] Well if you answered yes to at least two of these questions, ya’ might be interested in this. […]

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  • RawBike September 22, 2009 at 9:35 am

    Prefunk at Radio Room on Alberta Tuesday tonight. They have Lips specials and will play Lips tunes. Patios and bike parking. Hopefully Wayne shows up for a strategy meeting…or a beer. Either way, I’m in.

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  • […] So that everyone knows what I’m talking about: […]

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  • […] The Flaming Lips: website | myspace | bicycle video info […]

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  • Lips and assholes | The Days of Lore September 23, 2009 at 8:47 am

    […] The Lips will descend on Mount Tabor today … that’s TODAY, right here in Portland to film the video for “Watching the Planets. As sort of a nod to the World Naked Bike Ride, the idea is to get a large group of people together for an exhilarating (and slightly chaffing) bike ride in the nude while Wayne Coyne rolls around in his giant space bubble. Or as Coyne explained to […]

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  • […] you watch, look at this spread of photos to see what sorts of bodies answered Wayne’s call for nude bicyclists in Portland. Coyne and the naked co-ed bikers filmed a new video for “Watching The […]

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  • […] Para o proximo clip, para a musica Watching the Planets, semana passada os Flaming Lips filmaram ciclistas nus em […]

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  • […] the Planets,” which can be viewed here. Again, NOT SAFE FOR WORK. (Full story located here). Moving right along, I’ll be honest and say that, besides the super-groove “Free […]

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