By TOMIE V. PARKS
Editor for the Hutto News
A horse named Maverick had a message to share.
"And I heard it," said Tiffany MacNeil of California. "My job has been to figure out how to tell it.
That's how the song "You've Got Time Now" was born.
MacNeil and her crew were at Tri-Star Farm in Hutto last Friday, March 6, filming the accompanying music video. Both the film and video will debut this October in Germany at the European Conference on Horse-Assisted Education.
"You've Got Time Now" started to evolve last September when MacNeil was in Round Rock helping her sister-in-law pack.
"She had gone to the University of Texas in Austin and was getting ready to move back to California," MacNeil said. "We had been real busy the whole time I was there, and I had started to miss my horses, so I looked for a nearby stable to visit and maybe go on ride."
The top hit on her Google search was Maverick Horseback Riding of Hutto, the outfit that operates out of the barn and stables at Tri-Star Farm, which is located at the intersection of Palm Valley Boulevard and County Road 110.
"I looked at their website and immediately wanted to go. Their horses looked beautiful," MacNeil said. "I told myself I'd get up early and go on my last day in town."
But she and her sister-in-law got busy and distracted with last-minute chores.
"So I ended up rushing," MacNeil said. "And by the time I got to the stable's gates I had to keep on driving so I wouldn't miss my flight. There was just not time."
When she got to the plane, she was so tired fell asleep almost instantly.
"And by the time I woke up, I had the idea for the song," MacNeil said. "It dawned on me that you have to enjoy the beauty of the here and now. There is no need to rush. Enjoy the present moment and breathe."
So no she didn't get to meet Maverick when she drove by the stable's gates last September, but she did see his name and where he lived.
"I know it sounds crazy, but his spirit spoke to me," MacNeil said. "It was beautiful, serene and sincere. I had to get the song on paper."
By January, she had lyrics set, so she sought the aid of Demiurge Sound, a Hollywood-based studio, to set it to music.
"It was my nephew that added the instrumentation," MacNeil said.
Her nephew, Tristan McVeigh, owns and operates Demiurge Sound with partner Cale Bouchey.
The music video
Production of the "You've Got Time Now" music video started after the song was finished.
"I had to film it in Hutto," MacNeil said. "I wanted to take it all back to where it started, Maverick Horseback Riding stables."
She sought permission of Joan Marie McCoy, owner of Maverick Horseback Riding, by phone.
"A music video at my place? Of course I wanted to do it," McCoy said. "I'm proud that my horses will be showcased in a high quality film. They are stars, with their own personalities, talents and color."
As for the song's message, it's one McCoy understands and appreciates.
"'You've Got Time Now' really hits home," McCoy said. "So much of what she's out to accomplish matches what we are here, and I'm flattered and grateful that she was able to pick that up just by reading our website, seeing our fence and talking to me on the phone."
So when MacNeil mentioned a need for actors to be in her video, McCoy was happy to help with the talent search.
As a horse riding instructor, McCoy has ample access to horse riders of all types and ages. Several of her pupils and horse wranglers were more than willing to serve as actors and extras.
It was Christina Kane-Gibson, the public information officer for the City of Hutto, that helped MacNeil find her sound and tech crew.
"Christine pointed me in the direction of Hutto High School," MacNeil said Friday, March 6, when she was in town shooting the film. "The advanced film class has been helping with sound and lights."
The film's director, videographer and editor is Ariana Victor of Santa Rosa, Calif. She helped MacNeil produce her first music video, "Believe Believe Believe," which is YouTube and has had an audience of more than 47,000 people.
"Tiffany approached me to do another video in January," Victor said. "She said it was going to be in Texas and, of course I wanted to go. That's my goal. I want to travel the world as a videographer."
Victor is a junior at the University of Southern California with plans to transfer to New York University and study film.
Shooting started Friday, March 6, at Tri-Star Farm.
"We had a few problems at the beginning, but they were just snags," MacNeil said. "Finally started making progress by 11 a.m."
The story that accompanies the song focuses on a girl and her fondness of horses.
"We see her falling in love with horses at a young age, but as she grows up, she's distracted by the countless obstacles that life throws," MacNeil said. "So the camera shows her as a child, an adult and an older, wiser woman."
Her lesson is that of the song, to slow down and enjoy the present.
The video won't be ready to view until it's released this fall.