Ion debuts Tobacco Bowl music video

Ioannis “Ion” Alexakis released his debut music video for “Love/Smokes” yesterday, shot entirely within the Pedestrian Mall and Tobacco Bowl. This affords us a great opportunity to enjoy some local hip hop while shamelessly engaging in a bit of Iowa City naval gazing.

Describing himself as long-time customer, Alexakis said the idea for shooting a video at the Tobacco Bowl had been floating around for almost two years. Attending school in Chicago created a small logistical issue, but with the help of his brother/liaison Alexi, Alexakis and his fellow collaborators were able to get together and shoot the video in late March.

“The T-Bowl were extremely kind for letting us hang out in there after hours,” Ioannis said. “Just to make it easier as far as maintaining focus and not dealing with the bar crowd.”

The video itself was shot and edited by Mark Stastny, who had impressed Alexakis with his previous work. Iowa City’s Rich Rok (Richie Layton) provided the beats.

“He sent me a batch of beats to choose from, and that one really stuck out to me,” Alexakis said. “It’s one of the few songs of mine that have been written in a day.”

For his extras, Alexakis turned to Facebook, inviting friends and encouraging them to bring friends of friends. “A lot of my Iowa City family was in that room,” he said. “Shouts to johndope and Romulan, Mark Stantsy, Trina and Alexi.”

You can catch Alexakis as part of his AWTHNTKTS crew, performing on May 17 at Gabe’s. They’ll be appearing alongside Sector7G, Knonam, Dem Atlas, MC Rentz and Baby Jayne as part of the On Blast tour presented by Bloody Boombox. If hip hop is your thing, the $10 door charge ($8 in advance) offers some pretty serious bang for your buck.

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