The Magic of Music

Okay, so this is awesome.  Just watch!


I think my favorite stuff on the internet is this sort of thing.  This kind of creative effort that really reaches into multiple media to create something that nobody’s ever seen before.  I’m not saying this is the only guy in history who’s ever done anything like this, but I’ve sure never seen anything like it before.  What’s awesome about it, though, is that we’ve all seen the individual elements of it many, many times.  Everyone has heard songs, and everyone has seen card tricks.  But when the two are combined in such a clever way, it amplifies everything that’s impressive about them individually.  It helps that the song’s lyrics are already clever and allude to playing cards, and it helps, of course, that this guy is already amazing with his sleight of hand skills and his inventiveness in crafting his tricks.  But when the two are joined into a single act, it has this exponential effect, and the vision to harness that is what makes this guy really brilliant.

I’ve always thought that was the essence of creativity, really.  Not to create something out of nothing, which I think is impossible anyway, but to take different familiar elements and join them in a way that is unfamiliar and yet somehow seems completely logical and even inevitable.  I think when people try to just be “original,” they sacrifice their audience’s ability to connect with the art.  The audience needs to see something familiar in order to understand the art, and so they can have a frame of reference with which to recognize and truly appreciate what’s “new” about it.  They need to contrast the new with the old.

It also makes the art more impressive if the audience can see the challenge the artist overcame.  If I invent something completely new, like, say, a Goolakfa Brump, nobody will be impressed that I’ve created such a thing because I had no boundaries against which to struggle.  It took no effort to create it because I didn’t have any rules by which I had to abide in order to create it.  I made up my own rules.  But if I start with two already established things, like two different film genres, and combine them, I have to follow the conventions of each and make them line up in a way that fits and even makes it seem like they were supposed to be together all along.  If I can achieve that, people will be really impressed because they will recognize the challenge of what I did.  In that sense, art is more like a game than people realize, I think.

Okay, that’s Matt’s philosophy lesson for the day.  Happy Thursday, everyone!


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