By Her Aim Is True Director, Karen Whitehead

Of Bands and Bonds

One of the most intriguing aspects of Jini Dellaccio’s story that formed the backbone of Her Aim Is True is about relationships with her subjects.  But what really grabbed me as a storyteller, was how these unlikely relationships and Jini’s photography  were still having an impact and influence so many decades later.

This really hit home when during production I met drummer Bon Von Wheelie and  her Girl Trouble band mates, who like The Sonics and the Wailers, are Tacoma based – and distinguished musicians in their own right. I realized in the course of our conversations that there is an enduring legacy here about the close inter-relationship between the music and the iconic images. All the members of Girl Trouble described their first encounters as teenagers with the albums by The Wailers and The Sonics  – hardly believing that these sounds and images came from the 1960s. Here’s how Bon Von Wheelie describes the impact of the photos and the music together:

“As much of an impression as the music, those Jini Dellaccio photos were the visual counterpart.  In one photo, they gave you everything that was cool and tough in the Northwest.  There wasn’t anything like them.  That was all you needed. When we did our first album in 1988, we borrowed heavily from her photo style.”

Girl Trouble, Tacoma  copyright Tim Olsen

Girl Trouble, Tacoma
copyright Tim Olsen

I brought Girl Trouble into our final stage of filming around Tacoma, because of this.  I felt their presence in the film was a tribute to the music and Dellaccio’s timeless photography.But more than this, in connecting the past and present of this Pacific Nortwest music scene I found the heart of Jini’s story. The bonds that these bands formed with her and the photography she produced as a result, capture the raw energy and vitality of youth in every generation.

Bon Von Wheelie on location with Her Aim Is True at the Tacoma Armory

Bon Von Wheelie on location with Her Aim Is True at the Tacoma Armory