Friday, May 27, 2005


This is an excerpt taken from my brain after perusing the Magic Bunny forums. Someone was (And is always) asking about books, videos, DVD's on CD manip. Here is my shorter reply.

Danny Cole is the person on the first Burton Special and he helped make it trendy for others to start doing. Murray (Tall guy, blonde hair) Does an *almost* all CD act but always gets mixed reviews.

There is not much out there because very few do it and those who do wanna keep it on the down low for people who would want to saturate the market.

While this is just a smattering for the brit boys over there it pertains to so much more in magic. Once one person gets a good idea, everyone wants one. Here is my main problem with CD acts, and most manip acts for that fact:


Mind you I could easily have said WHY!? but thaz obvious I think. Watching ol' Murray the major CD manip player in today's magic world got me thinking that what he is producing is nothing more than billiard balls, cards, and doves. Same stuff, just a prop change. (I dunno if he still does it but the production of a "CD castle" is a bit odd and really drives home the question WHY?

Mind you that has not much to do with the little bold word up there. Here is the deal. Some guy produces CD's? Ok thaz fyne. He produces sunglasses, manips the lens, produces a silk... wait.. is this a CD act? I seem to have suddenly forgotten.. to care. Most manip acts suffer this. They produce items for NO reason, (Aside from the fact it's pritty... mind you that is is the same foundation most people's dating life is built on.), and then muddle it up a bit by introducing random characters into the play that may or, more than likely, have NOTHING to do with the theme as a hole (Sp. error done on purpose. Of course if you tend to NOT read this due to my poor purposeful grammatical errors... what the hell do I care what you think?)

So yes try to pick a theme. I saw a guy at a magic competition start out strong and end nowhere NEAR his proposed act setting. (Oddly enuff manipulating CD's) Cd magic is very modern, trendy, and new to magic. (As new as a CD can be I suppose) There is little on it cuz' the people who do it feel that is their "Original" idea. Yup, yer an individual... just like everyone else. Give it up baby, yer not the first one to think a shiny round object was magical.

So yes CD manipulation is going to become into more and more magic acts I fear. Magic with records was done and I am sure some daring soul even tried 8-track magic. If it's done right magic with a cassette tape can be great. It's not the prop kids... it's you. Don't be like everyone else. Don't wait for someone to publish a book or a DVD or a video or a porno... create..

Do not follow... however perchance borrow.


Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Run, Run Away

You ever heard the phrase, "Don't run if yer not being chased"? It's a very popular saying in Magic. Right up there with KISS and CHaSD. It applies in life too, except unless yer in South Dallas or Compton. Then you want to run regardless of being chased or not.

As magicians we tend to over-explain lot of stuff. "This is an ordinary coin" well no duh genius you just borrowed it from them. Actions speak louder than words and pictures are worth 1000 of them. IF yer audience isn't "getting" what yer selling, then it's time to change yer delivery. Less is more and I think the less you point out the bloody obvious the better.

Now we, the mirth-makers.. or is that the pill-takers.. whatever you wanna call us, we do tend to have a few things that are JUST to amuse us. There is no need to explain them and, aside from the occasional Jonestown Kool-aid reference or Michael Hutchins joke, are all perfectly safe probably. (Wow all of this just for that one line.)

Remember, just because people seem dumb doesn't mean they are... all of the time.


Thursday, May 12, 2005

I been writing this journal for some time. A few people read it. No clue how many. Don't care. It's titled Magic Rants (Yes I had it first) but above it sez "Why am I stuck in Magician Hell?" That isn't exactly what some of you might think it means. After doing magic over 20 years you get to a point where it's hard to be fooled and you know how a LOT of stuff is done. You also tend to palm anything you happen to pick up. That ladies and gentlemen is magician hell. Coffee creamers, fruit, cards, coins, small household pets... nothing is safe from the threat of a finger clip or classic palm!!!

With this in mind we seem to forget what becomes effective in the eyes of the mundanes. Remember the first time you saw invisible deck? It prolly blew your mind. (20 bucks same as in town) What about a thumb tip? (I actually never saw this performed before I knew what it was.) I remember the first time I ever saw an ITR performed, back when they looked like crack pipes, and I about wet myself. Something floated RIGHT before my eyes!! I hadda get that!! Now I realize invisible thread is one big pain in the ass to use. Regardless... we forget.

I was flipping thru Penn and Teller's - How to Play with Your Food and they have a trick with a sugar cube very similar to that old voodoo ashes trick. Greg Wilson has something on one of his tapes using lipstick that I recently did when I was bored. Now voodoo ashes is in damn near every magic book on impromptu or good starter magic. It's yeeeeeears old. It's easy. It's effective... and very few people do it. Why? We forget that it BLOWS people's minds!! I personally cannot believe it. Thaz the magic side of me. The side that thinks like a normal-type person remembers that it must be trippy as hell to have that happen to you.

Don't stop using something because YOU have become disenchanted with it's workings. Use it. Change it to fit your needs. Some classics stay that way because they fool people. I don't like linking rings or cups and balls but they still exists for a reason. Don't let hat you know stop you from showing them something THEY don't know.

Forget everything you know.. or think you know... even if yer not Billy Barty.


Wednesday, May 11, 2005

And we live our life...

Like a candle in the wind. Yes folks Jay Marshall, owner of Magic Inc. in Chicago as well as the care and feeder of Lefty the Rabbit has passed on into that great stage of wherever you might just believe in. (Or if yer atheist he's just dead.) Another one bites the dust.... which brings up an interesting point.

What are we gonna do when all of our most current forebearers are gone? The best teachers and inventors will all eventually pass away and take much knowledge with them. Oh sure L&L publishing and Michael Ammar will randomly trick them into putting out a video series but there is so much more that will never see print of any kind. It's style. Very few people have any style anymore.

Many of our classics of magic (Billy McComb, not the linking rings) have what only comes with experience. Ingenuity and panache. With today's modern magi being able to find what they want at the push of a button they have NO idea what it's like to learn from great teacher or work for their skill. Once all the great teachers are gone there will be no more lessons to learn.. and then what?

Too many people don't research the history of their craft.. ANY craft as it is. I don't think you have to start a library and read Discoverie of Withcraft or anything but merely pay attention. (Even those of us who are too poor to pay attention probably should.)

Personally I don't feel here is anyone in today's magic world who has the flair of the older gents who are or soon will be long gone. They were TRUE gentlemen (In some respect or another). Dai Vernon knew how to dress, Bruce Cervon.. does not. (What the hell is up with that neckerchief anyway?) Regardless, knowledge is sometimes a limited time offer. Get it while the gettin's good.

Operators are standing by...