For Diego Elias of Palm Desert, sheltering at home is a family affair best expressed with the sum of his talents as a sound engineer, musician, and video and animation technician.

Six-year-old Evan, 17-year-old Michael, and their camera-shy mom all perform with Elias in the music video for “Raindrops,” which he composed, recorded and, mixed to “Keep Art Alive,” an initiative by the California Desert Arts Council (CDAC), which awarded him a $500 artist relief grant.

CDAC and affiliate La Quinta Arts Foundation established a $50,000 Keep Art Alive fund to award grants to Coachella Valley artists and arts organizations who create thoughtful, inspiring, and relevant works responding to the crisis.

“The music video is dedicated to families isolated at home during COVID-19 pandemic,” says Elias, who recently patented musical instrument called a Derophone, which he plays in “Raindrops.”

“My name is Evan,” the on-screen text begins in silence. “I’m in the first grade. My school is closed because of COVID-19.”

As Evan begins to play the piano, his words continue: “I miss my friends. But know I have a great friend here at home. His name is Michael. He is my brother.”

Michael appears, playing the flute.

Evan goes on: “We have been friends my entire life. He has always looked after me. He is super cool! I also miss my teacher at school.”

Elias appears playing the Derophone.

“This is my dad,” Evan’s text continues. “Since I was 4, he sits with me every day and teaches me to play the piano. But now he also teaches me math, English and science.”

The music intensifies, with Mom, not visible, playing the chimes, as Evan’s next words appear: “I wonder … what I’d do … without my family.”

The cacophony ease, and the dedication appears: to “all the siblings who are now best friends and parents who have become teachers.”

Visit Diego Elias online at