Launched in February 2005, LO-FI Saint Louis is the baby of Chicago born Bill Streeter, graphic designer, A/V geek, and co-founder of GaragePunk.com. The site is dedicated to all the characters in St. Louis, where Streeter’s been living since 2001. Bands that frequent the local clubs, rollergirls, and well-known artists that live in his corner of St. Louis have found themselves featured on the pages of LOFISTL at one point or another.
In a mid-size city better known for its underground scene than an adherence to mainstream media’s dictations on taste and style, Streeter has carved out a niche as an archivist of local color, bringing attention to an often over-looked side of St. Louis by filming videos of the people who make his city so distinct.
His videos have a fairly professional air to them. Streeter isn’t just someone in the pit filming bands with a handheld camera. He usually has a patch into the soundboard and some pretty decent angles. Some even have added touches like animation and filters. Videos are often long, following musical sets to conclusion or dissecting competitive rollergirl leagues with interviews, battle footage, and any other fascinating material he can record.
The art scene is clearly one of Streeter’s favorite aspects of St. Louis. Photographer Bob Reuter, graphic designer Art Chantry, and musicians like The Black Lips are extensively interviewed alongside clips from performances, openings, and exhibits. His other prominent infatuation is with St. Louis garage rock. Performance videos litter the archives and his recordings all have that small-stage, lively-crowd, close-quarters atmosphere that give each clip a hometown rock and roll feel.
The documentary short dubbed “Tom Huck, Evil Printmaker” depicts the graphic artist as he works in various media and talks about his inspirations. It’s not the most original filmmaking you’ll see, but it does capture pretty succinctly Streeter’s love for his cohorts. Like the music videos, this documentary thoughtfully shot and edited, and Huck’s work is interesting, if you’re one with an interest in tattoo-style art.