The moments we shine are the ones where we have forgotten that people are watching, when we are just 'us' doing the things we do because we love to do them.
By Larry Pattison
Published January 09, 2012
As artists, athletes, business people, as employees and even as lovers, we spend our lives trying to stand out amongst the crowd.
In our search for love, what is it about us that will make the person of our dreams take notice? As prospective employees, what is it within our skill set that will make an employer choose us among hundreds or thousands of applicants?
As artists, we plug away each and every day at the media that drive our passions. At some place deep inside, we all hope one day to find the thing that makes us stand out in our chosen field and turns our evening passions into full-time dreams.
The moments we shine are the ones where we have forgotten that people are watching us. When we stop thinking about what that 'thing' will be that makes us stand above - that's when our talents and skills are noticed. When we are just 'us' doing the things we do because we love to do them, that is when we are best at what we do.
A local band called Walk Off The Earth was seemingly doing just that: playing music, making videos, doing what they do best and are most passionate about.
An independent band from Burlington, Ontario, they were just on the brink of stardom before they posted their latest video, "Somebody That I Used to Know," a cover of a Gotye song of the same title.
I had never heard of either the original or cover artists before yesterday, but although I love Walk Off The Earth's version and video very much and feel it deserves the acclaim its receiving, Gotye's original video is certainly more powerful with regards to the emotion of the lyrics.
The original, which features the amazing voice Kimbra, is also a must-see.
Overnight there were blog posts referencing this video, they'd been talked about by national news media across the globe, and fans from around the world were even begging them to come play in their country.
It is amazing where following your passions can lead you. Just when you thought the magic of this two-day roller coaster ride was fait accompli, ScottMay put together a side-by-side comparison of Gotye's original and Walk Off The Earth's cover.
He blends the two videos onto the screen where we see the remarkable resemblance. If you thought the harmony was already amazing between the five WOTE members, add Gotye and Kimbra and wow! One commenter wrote, "My ears are tingling." Mine too!
This cover had gone up a couple hundred thousand views just in the time it took me to watch some of their videos and write this blog post. When I first stumbled upon it, the morning after it was uploaded to YouTube via a link from Hamilton Seen, the video only had a few hundred hits. I woke up Saturday morning to have another look, and it was over 800,000. Walk Off The Earth, had found 'their' thing.
I have now watched a handful of their videos, and my favourite is Money Tree. As a former student of animation, I love their utilization of stop motion animation.
If you thought "Somebody That I Used to know" was extraordinary, you must take a look at his cover of Eminem's "Love the Way You Lie", embedded below. This is one guy, Gianni Luminati, and four instruments (five if you include his loop station pedals).
He starts off with a snare made out of a piece of metal, then he hits the loop pedals, he picks up his ukulele, plays, hits the loop, starts playing what looks like a laptop but sounds like a xylophone, loops it, raps a bit, reaches for his guitar, and brings in other instruments throughout the song. He does all this while belting out the lyrics with a powerful, captivating voice others across have compared to Peter Gabriel.
I first fell in love with the ukulele from Train's Hey Soul Sister. I have fallen again. Luminati is a modern day Beck.
Also check out his cover of Bruno Mars' "Grenade". I am not as big a fan of the cover itself as I am his intrinsic use of odd objects to create sound. "In Grenade", he uses "a five gallon water bottle, a gun, two knives, a kick drum, a ukulele, a guitar, a glockenspiel and his Mouth" according to the description.
Now that you know these guys, share some more Walk Off The Earth love. This collective is no one hit wonder. They are the real deal. Extremely talented and creative and for all you local peeps, this magic was mastered just across the highway. LIKE!
As I was obtaining links to provide below, I noticed that the band received a little treat late the other night. It seems even Gotye himself approves of this cover:
I know who to ask for help with acoustic versions of Somebody: Walk Off The Earth bit.ly/wIOlea Hilarious and brilliant.
Here is some more information and links for Walk Off The Earth:
If you only click one of these many links, check the YouTube channel out most importantly. You'll be on there for hours. I guarantee it. Their endless creativity is most predominantly showcased on their channel.
At last I checked, this video had reached 6.1M+ hits. Unbelievable.
First published on Shaking The Tree, Larry's personal website.
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