“ ‘Save My Soul’ is Jo’s very real, very honest ode to addiction, and in her exposing her truth, I wanted to give others the opportunity to do the same,” Williams, who made her directorial debut with this video, wrote on Tumblr. The video features Williams’ and JoJo’s “wonderful band of misfit friends” expressing themselves on a yellow leather couch, where JoJo eventually finds herself between shots of singing passionately in the open landscapes of Joshua Tree.
On Instagram, JoJo explained that they shot the video “about a month before [her] father lost his decades long battle with addiction” in November. “His death honestly felt like it came out of nowhere… and yet I had been mourning him for years… if that makes any sense,” she wrote. “I know all too well from seeing it around me that the fight is not easy. It’s every day. All consuming. I’m not mad at my dad. I love him and I’m sad. He is my greatest heartbreak.”
JoJo released the video on what would have been her father’s 61st birthday, and she dedicated the video to him on social media. “This song, which had always been personal to me, takes on [an] even deeper meaning now.’I try to run but it hurts every time I try… Lord I try and I can’t say no.’ Makes me think of the universal struggle of seeking victory over the feeling of powerlessness to a situation, a lover, a drug,” she wrote.
Watch the video above, and see both JoJo and Williams’ Instagram posts below.
“Save My Soul” is about addiction. Of all kinds. I wanted to convey the feeling of powerlessness I’ve felt in my life in an uncomplicated way and show a range of what it might look like for others who’ve been there. Working with one of my best friends, Zelda Williams (director of SMS), was a highlight of my 2015. We’d been talking about working together for like 10 years! Because of the content of the song and the way it touched us both, “Save My Soul” felt like the natural place for us to finally collaborate. A group of us young, crazy, creatives drove out to the magical desert of Joshua Tree and got naked - most of us emotionally, and a few literally. It was a safe space to be vulnerable and free from judgment and the need to be/ look/ act “perfect”. Everyone who participated connected to the song and brought their truth to the table. We filmed this video about a month before my father lost his decades long battle with addiction. His death honestly felt like it came out of nowhere…and yet I had been mourning him for years…if that makes any sense. I know all too well from seeing it around me that the fight is not easy. It’s every day. All consuming. I’m not mad at my dad. I love him and I’m sad. He is my greatest heartbreak. This song, which had always been personal to me, takes on even deeper meaning now. “I try to run but it hurts every time I try… Lord I try and I can’t say no.” Makes me think of the universal struggle of seeking victory over the feeling of powerlessness to a situation, a lover, a drug. Losing my father at the end of last year and knowing the propensity for addiction of all kinds that runs deep in my blood from both sides makes it next-level important for me to LIVE - not just be alive, but THRIVE in his honor. I can do this. And so can you. If you’re struggling, believe the only way OUT is THROUGH. Keep going. Love, Jo. P.S. Thank you to the beautiful crazies who dedicated their time and energy to come together and make this video possible. It wouldn’t have happened without you.
Hey guys! The day has finally arrived! @iamjojo and I stole some misfits to the desert and filmed Save My Soul a while ago now, but you finally get to see it. To read a bit about my thoughts directing it and to watch our video, you can head over to zeldawilliams.tumblr.com, @iamjojo’s Twitter, or, yknow, head to youtube! Be gentle! It’s my first time xo - Zelda