UT junior releases music video 'Put ‘Em Up'

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Economics junior Jonathan Dror produced a UT-inspired music video in response to attention he garnered on the UT Campus Story on Snapchat. Dror looks to continue his singing career as a member of the a capella group The Ransom Notes.
Photo Credit: Stephanie Tacy | Daily Texan Staff

Economics junior Jonathan Dror’s attempt to get on Snapchat’s UT Campus Story led to a school-spirited music video that had garnered over 20,000 views the day after he released it.

On Tuesday, Dror uploaded a music video to YouTube of a Texas spirit song he wrote called “Put ’Em Up.” Clad in burnt orange clothing and Longhorn emblems, he sang in front of popular locations on the UT campus, including the Main Building, football stadium and inside the Life Science Library. The video quickly went viral and was posted with varying responses on UT Facebook pages and different online publications, such as the UT Co-op website and Total Frat Move.

“When the Campus Story was first introduced, it was huge, and people found it so impossible to get on it,” Dror said. “I was sitting in my room and messing around, writing songs and choruses and anything that sounded catchy. I started writing four lines about UT, not thinking anything of it.”

When Dror’s 10-second Snapchat of him singing made it onto the UT Campus Story, more than 20,000 people viewed it. He received texts from supportive friends, and students who recognized him from Snapchat approached him. He decided to take the next step and create a music video when his snap continued to be mentioned on social media platforms such as Twitter and Yik Yak.

In February, he began adding lyrics to his original chorus and started filming the music video in May. Filming took three days — from early in the morning to late at night — and included a cast of friends, UT football players and Student Government President Xavier Rotnofsky and Vice President Rohit Mandalapu. Dror and radio-television-film sophomore Eric Stern, one of the people who helped direct and produce the video, spent their summer editing the footage. 

“I didn’t have any other projects going on at the time, so I could focus my attention on the video,” Stern said. “We’re a solid team, and I’m excited to see the buzz it’s creating on campus and continue to produce content.”

Aside from the attention ­— both good and bad ­— generated by the song, Dror said he especially likes that the video represents UT and student life. 

“I wanted the video to be organic and natural and reflect the life of an average student being genuine with friends,” Dror said. “I didn’t want it to be something UT isn’t or be something I’m not.”

Dror said other students have suggested playing his song at tailgates, downtown and on the Jumbotron at football games. Journalism junior Samantha Reichstein, who appears in the video, said the song is bringing Texas fans closer together by promoting UT.

“Everyone loves repping Texas, whether it’s wearing burnt orange, going to the football game or throwing a hook ’em sign in a picture,” Reichstein said. “I think the video encompasses all of that.”

Dror said he has always been interested in singing and music. He said a selection of artists ranging from Chris Brown to Michael Bublé influence him. 

“From hip hop to R&B to a slower jazz is where I feel my voice,” Dror said. “I’m very passionate about singing.”

Reichsteinsaid she is proud of Dror’s accomplishments.

“We went to camp every summer, and he would always sing something at the talent show,” Reichstein said. “Ever since he was little, everyone has been telling him, ‘You’re going to be famous.’”

Dror said he recently joined the UT a capella group The Ransom Notes and hopes to continue singing and making music. 

“The best thing I’ve been hearing is when people are saying, ‘I can’t get this song out of my head,’” Dror said. “This is the best first start I could ask for.”