Archives for category: video

The stories and music of people like Paul Potts and Susan Boyle move us, and rightly so — there’s something so profound about they way their voices confound our preconceived notions about them, based primarily on their outward appearance.

But today, via Eugene Cho, I came across a story and a song that brought me to tears.

At PS22 in New York City, a school where over three quarters of the students are eligible for free lunch, the PS22 Chorus of fifth graders — led by their teacher Mr. B (Gregg Breinberg) — are making some incredible music. A brief description from one article:

As Breinberg plays, he makes eye contact with the kids, coaxing performances from them and letting them enjoy themselves. Later, Davoya, one of the chorus members, explains how he does it. “At first, when I sang, I had no emotion,” she says. “I didn’t move. But Mr. B taught me to sing with feeling. With feeling and heart.”

Feeling and heart (along with an unusual repertoire) is what has made the ps 22 Chorus famous. In the last two years, this small, elementary-school choir has piqued the interest of people all over the world: music lovers and parents but also a random, devoted cross-section of the World Wide Web…

It’s easy to forget, watching the chorus achieve such extraordinary success, that a lot of its members are from disadvantaged backgrounds. Breinberg says that several of the students in the chorus are from special education and English as a Second Language programs. “It’s one of the more rewarding aspects of my profession to see so many of our kids who have difficulties in other areas of academics thrive within the choral environment,” he says. “People often lose sight of how important music is to the education of these kids.”

There something true and beautiful about joy, freedom, expression and soul when they’re cultivated in the midst of adversity.  Music can be so much more than notes on a page, especially in the lives of kids.  As Eugene wrote:

Invest in kids.  Believe in kids.  Love on kids.  Build them up.  I was reminded of a quote from Frederick Douglass: “It is easier to build strong children than it is to repair broken men (grown-ups).”

Below, you can watch the PS22 Chorus perform Viva La Vida by Coldplay and You Raise Me Up by Josh Groban:

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Back in middle school, I used to skate a Lance Mountain Mini (that is, until some terrible person stole it – right out of my garage!).  These were the pre-kickflippery days — instead of hardflips and nollie 360 heelflips, we were learning how to boneless (thanks, Tony Hawk!), no comply (thanks, Mike V!), bertslide, and — one day — to pull of a ho ho handplant (where, oh where, did they come up with these names!).

Every Bones Brigade video was a cause for celebration, but The Search for Animal Chin took it to the next level.  My head almost exploded when they revealed the secret door on the connected ramp (watch the clip below):

If I were ever to get an old school skateboarding tattoo, it would be the old Rat Bones logo.

Like Rob Bell musing in this Nooma video, I used to wonder where God was.  But after many years of walking with Jesus, now I wonder where God isn’t.

That being said, I’m not fully convinced Jesus is in that bucket of spumoni, piece of burnt toast, cheese puff, moth, rock, tree trunk, nasty scar, or the imprint left by a drippy cinnamon bun.

But I’ll let you decide for yourself [h/t: Serious Eats].  Let’s do this thing:

If I had entrance music or a rad metal band following me around, I would totally steal the awesome intro the Detroit Pistons have been using for, like, forever… I’m taking, of course, about The Final Countdown by Europe.

What Gob Bluth lacks in magical chops, he makes up for in intro-music enthusiasm. And, of course, the soundtrack to his mad magical preening is The Final Countdown.  Observe:

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How does one calculate the awesomeness of this video?

A sampling of the Petrified brilliance contained therein:

  • 00:05 – Thank you, sign man, for the warning:  “Danger… you’re about to enter a whimsical rock world of high kicks and hot licks.”
  • 00:25 – Quick cut to the drummer wearing a florescent pink painter’s cap with the brim turned up, open mouth grin and double drumstick twirl.
  • 00:30 – Dramatic black & white shot of the keytarist’s silhouette.
  • 00:47 – Wait!  Can you handle the rock?  Is your face melting?  Is your heart still beating?  Yes?  Good.  Let’s continue.
  • 00:56 – The Carlton.
  • 1:10 – We just want you to know that we’re not always serious, “message” rockers.  I mean it: this isn’t even a guitar (it’s a wood plank) and that mic he’s singing into?  It’s a drumstick!
  • 1:50 – Old timey judges rule.
  • 2:10 – Let me illustrate the meaning of the chorus here.
  • 3:11 – That face-melting solo couldn’t just be the work of two hands, could it?

In honor of Graham Parker, who recently solved a Rubik’s Cube after 26 long years of trying, here are a few videos to get you on track for solving that cursed 80s enigma:

… but this is getting out of hand.

Check out this enormous, year-end meta-/mega-list from Time magazine, aptly titled Top 10 Everything of 2008. In case you were wondering, Time says there’s a difference between the Top 10 Quotes and Top 10 T-shirt Worthy Slogans.

If you have some time to meander through this list, you might find gems like this one: Aerial Duo Parachute Into Wrong Stadium or the oddly compelling video, Western Spaghetti.  You can also learn a thing or two about nuking the fridge (hint: it’s not good).

I might just write in this video as my Top Ten of awesomeness for the year.  Seriously, I dare you to watch it and not be totally psyched for working your lats:

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