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Topic: Promo
Message: Posted by: vernon (Dec 12, 2006 01:58PM)
Made this promo earlier this year to hawk around festival organisers...what does the inteligentia think...

http://www.myspace.com/jamesjamespromo

go to my video on my space if it does not come up on the front page.
Thanks
Vernon
aka
james James
Message: Posted by: RobertBloor (Dec 12, 2006 02:25PM)
Dude, that's pretty great. From a buyers stand point, I love actually seeing what you do, and most of all, I loved hearing the audience reactions.

When I see a video, I want to be able to visualize what you'll do at my event.
You sell that pretty well.

On a performance note - I love how you reveal the 4th load dropping it from the cup. And just FYI, I fully intend to steal! ;-)

Great job!
Robert
Message: Posted by: Magicpitch (Dec 12, 2006 05:40PM)
Looks good to me James! Very nice work on all the magic show. It all looks very well polished. Good work.

Steve
Message: Posted by: vernon (Dec 13, 2006 01:42AM)
Thanks guys for your kind words.Attended one of the lectures that Gazzo gave over here a few years ago and the c+b show I learned from him has taken me around the world. For a long time Ive done it as taught and by rote to some degree, but Im gradually changing it. I still have to stamp my mark on it...but Im sure the routine will always be related to Gazzo, because of the work and smarts he has put on it.Best money in magic that I have ever spent.
Thanks again for all of your kind words though. Now Im a bit more aufait with the computer I may try and get some more stuff uploaded.
JJ
Message: Posted by: Dave V (Dec 13, 2006 01:48AM)
Very nice promo. Gazzo taught you well.
Message: Posted by: John Bowlin (Dec 13, 2006 02:05AM)
OMG...I'm dizzy :P , some good looking stuff but a bit too much editing license going on. If I'm viewing something as a promo I want to see at least 5 seconds of continuous footage at some point. It is more of a promotion for film montage. The scene changes go so fast as to be almost be exhausting. Just as an in your act there should be rythm...buildup...release. Watch a good movie promo and notice the rythm.
Message: Posted by: ed rhodes (Dec 13, 2006 04:57AM)
I agree. You don't really get a chance to focus on what's going on before the next scene slides in.

Great work on the C&B though from what I could catch of it.
Message: Posted by: Dave V (Dec 13, 2006 12:18PM)
We scream "Be Original!" but then we're taught "No no, my way is best. Do it exactly like this..." It's hard to have it both ways. Anyone who has sat through Gazzo's Master Class has experienced this first hand.

Whit Haydn wrote a great essay in one of his booklets on "Against being original." The masters know what works, who are we to just go and change things? We need to know what works, and exactly why before we know what to change (and why).

I'm not against originality, but I'm also not advocating outright stealing of routines. If you learned Gazzo's C&B routine and performed it exactly to his specifications, I see nothing wrong with that. Just don't try to *be* Gazzo or you'll fall flat on your ***.
Message: Posted by: JeffMac (Dec 13, 2006 01:08PM)
One note on your Vid is either turn the music down in the audio mix during your patter or use tracks without vocals. You seem to have a great patter and good repore with the audience but instead your pushing a band that doesn't really need pushing.
Message: Posted by: vernon (Dec 13, 2006 01:53PM)
Back again after Covent garden...Yup Gazzo taught me well, and I agree with Dan and what Whit has previously said elsewhere re originality. I learned the show from Gazzo, and for a couple of years it has held me in great stead...seriously the best purchase I ever made in magic.
He did say however that one needs to change it and stamp ones own mark on it. when I really need to make the money or its tough, I tend to fall back to rote, but when Im having fun, which is most of the time, I have been altering it. Have I think soem great ideas re scotch eggs and a haggis...Re the audio Jeff, your right I am battling one against the other in vocals and music...I couldn't figure out how to alter the levels...next one though will be muxho better...
Thanks again for al your input though.
JJ
Message: Posted by: RobertBloor (Dec 13, 2006 02:12PM)
Problem with Gazzo's routine...once he put it up for sale, it was all over. Nobody, not even Gazzo has any leeway to complain about someone who performs "his" Cups & Balls sequences.

And as for Gazzo's lines - name a single one that is totally unique to Gazzo. Please. Everything that's been said before is said now and will be said again.

Welcome to the American Capitalist system friends.

-Robert

PS: DaveV, I think what you said alludes to the biggest problem with this Cups routine - Gazzo (and his loyal) think ANYONE who does a hat load or even Cups & Balls are trying to BE Gazzo. I've been accused of it before myself. Trust me, the last thing I'd try to be is Gazzo. But his routine - I bought it. It now belongs to me. (And anyone else who invested in it). No room to complain anymore.
Message: Posted by: JeffMac (Dec 13, 2006 08:31PM)
Vernon Send me the audio and vid seperatly and I can do a mix for you if you want. I got a long night of mixing ahead of me anyways it'll only take me a few minutes.
Message: Posted by: Pokie-Poke (Dec 13, 2006 11:27PM)
All I got was audio, no vidio. :(
Message: Posted by: vernon (Dec 14, 2006 03:57AM)
Hi Jeff, thanks for the offer, Im working on a new dvd though and after doing a couple Im getting better...reading the programmes help page etc helps...and Pokie, not being aufait with computers etc, wouldnt know how to help...twould seem that this routine has become soooooo popular, Edinburgh festival this year...6 magicians, and 4 c+b workers, that's where a wee overlap happened and the ££ was affected in the hats slightly...In learning the routine and making it a show, I have taken it to the streets, and used it to get my street smarts, ie making them stop and stay etc...using THESE techniques I have experimented with other things....No table, Card in mouth,Williamsons ring and rope, billswitch(during bottle)and balloon swallow(after hyping it just a bit)...then hat!Decent amount £ equal to some hats I make with c+b.Learning from the man, has shortened the time taken to get better on the streets...Wait for the cream cartons, sugar cubes, eggs, and a creme brule'...itll be my chefs show...
Cheers JJ
Message: Posted by: JeffMac (Dec 14, 2006 04:31AM)
You may want to check out audacity for the Audio Mix. It's super easy to use and can even clean up the camcorder mic noise.
Message: Posted by: Mario Morris (Dec 14, 2006 07:49AM)
James as you know I love your DVD but I still cant beleave you nicked my routine you ***.
The truth is your a real worker first, no one can teach, give all take this away from you. Any one could learn the Gazzo routine but not every one could work it.

I have had the pleaser of seeing your show some countless of times both in Edinburgh and Cardiff when we worked back to back. In my mind you have worked dame hard to make your show yours with some priceless idears. I wont mention them because they will be nicked for sure.

The best part James you a good man with a great heart for life and I am proud to have you as a freand.

Mario
Message: Posted by: vernon (Dec 14, 2006 10:14AM)
Hey Mario...FREAND must be a welsh spelling...Just off the phone to you but once again thanks for taking the time out to put your comments in.I know its a bit shmaltzy but you have enriched my life also...
Working on reducing some other stuff...must have too much time on y hands during this Christmas season...can you tell I don't have many corporate gigs...Still, Dubai this jan tence to OZ and NZ...
JJ
aka
Vernon
Message: Posted by: usg353d (Dec 14, 2006 10:35AM)
Pretty sweet!
Message: Posted by: DAK (Dec 14, 2006 12:42PM)
I too have had the priviledge of spending many a summers day at Covent Garden sharing a pitch with JamesJames.
You helped me in so many ways. The way you build a crowd is an education in itself. We've also had many a good laugh too. I look forward to some fat hats sharing a pitch there again in summer 2007.
I like the promo but agree with it being a bit dizzying! I look forward to seeing the new one. What's the music you use as I love that tune but have no idea what it is as I'm not up with what's in the hit parade these days!
Have a fab time in NZ and Aus. Think of us left here in the UK!

Dominick
Message: Posted by: walid ahumada (Dec 14, 2006 01:14PM)
Congratulations james, I wich I could see the whole routine (no editing)
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Dec 14, 2006 03:43PM)
I really like the video. It takes advantage of the fact that it is a hand held camera instead of highlighting it as a weakness! Very clever editing.

You show enough of what you do to sell the idea and show how much the audience likes it. Very very nice. I am impressed.

I have seen many many many videos that have 3 camera shots that do not live up to this and what I feel is it's ability to sell.

Very nice.
Message: Posted by: Dave V (Dec 14, 2006 03:56PM)
The only complain I have is the closing credits. They are too dark, too small, and the music plays on and on after everything else stops. I'd like to see you make the contact info more readable and fade out the music a few seconds later.

I didn't really mind the patter/music volume thing. You weren't really saying much of importance and if you were any louder you'd be competing directly with the music. I'm not an audio guy though. If someone can mix it better, let them have a shot at it.
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 14, 2006 05:56PM)
The truth is that gazzo has influenced magic performed on the streets mor than any other performer ever! its just that simple....and its ok for jj to be doing his show. gazzo sold it... but the thing is, it doesn't matter if you do his show, most will fail...its takes a special performer to deliver the lines to make people laugh versus be angry...and if this show takes jj around the world, allows the freedom that quaility street performers know then more power to him....

gazzo is the man straight out, hes the best there is and hes better than all the rest including cellini and the lot! I love cellini for his magic but I love gazzo for his show

not that I know anything


kozmo
Message: Posted by: vernon (Dec 15, 2006 05:32AM)
Hi again...I agree with you tedb Gazzo, has infulenced many a performer and due to the unmitigated success of the routine and his personality, the street is flooded with c+b workers. BUT audiences (ie real lay money paying public)dont readily know this and you may be the only street magician they see(excepting festivals...).Of course buskers/workers around the world know of Gazzo, but they are not the ones putting the money in the hat.Dominik thanks for your words also, hope you are enjoying life outside London...I am figuring out by myself how to reduce a vid for the web(a friend helped with the previous one)...and Dave I agree, the details at the end are small.The whole promo comes in a dvd with 3 chapters,2 shows (edited and unedited...a wierd interview in my mothers garden, and the promo...and all my details are on the box, and on the dvd itself.Now off to see if I can be computer literate...

Have just uploaded another 'clip'. Well its actualy the whole c+b show shot in Nelson New Zealand this Feb. There are 4 expletives in it...it was a 'Buskers gone Wild' night...as it were. Not my usual form of address or patter, I work 'clea' but needs at that time must.Havent got a dedicated link to it so go to http://www.myspace.com/jamesjamespromo again and click on video and cups and balls show...
Please excuse the language....(only 4 expletives...)


JJ
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 15, 2006 08:47AM)
I agree with you comepletely vernon...just because you see a gazzo video doesn't mean you can pull it off...congrats on that..

I don't do his show but I'm sure we all share the lines...at least the ones we think we can get away with

koz
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Dec 15, 2006 04:13PM)
I just want to say that Gazzo does have original lines, lines that were written by him. He has a notebook that he keeps and polishes weekly. Some of his lines are stock lines, but a lot of Gazzo's lines are his solo creations.

Jim
Message: Posted by: vernon (Dec 16, 2006 05:22AM)
I have found whilst doing the schtick on the streets, many stock lines have I used, and like all of us, new scenarios come into play at any given time and a 'new' bit of business or line is generated and used.I would hazzard a guess that most street workers keep coming up with material,then its overheard or seen and a few months(!) down the line it gets around.I reckon the longer one does the street the more you come up with and add to the pot! as it were...

Think Ive managed to sort out the link for the c+b show in full...
http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids.individual&videoid=1562492978

JJ
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Dec 16, 2006 02:03PM)
I will say one thing about routines and that is all.

I do believe also that if Gazzo doesnít want anyone to do the stuff he should NOT release it. Then he may indeed have a complaint, which I have never heard him do by the way.

BUT on the other hand I as a performer and this am ONLY ME I am speaking for, could not take anotherís routine and use it word for word, move for move. I may learn it to learn the moves or the basics, but then I have to change it. It is rare if ever that something will fit my style and skill level exactly.

The other thing is that magicians often wonder why they can't make it in comedy clubs. Well the fact is that SO many guys show up with the same routines, and owners and managers and agents have seen it all before. Not only the tricks, but the darn lines and routines!

The fastest way to not get a club date the first time is to be branded a thief. I know that is not this section, but it is related.

To take a routine, even if someone taught it to you word for word move for move is just not something that is right FOR ME. I make no judgments on weather it is right for others.
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Dec 17, 2006 02:02PM)
Here's the thing. It's one thing to do these lines that you have "paid for" in your act. It is an entirely different thing to use them in your promo video.

I had some original straitjacket escape lines. One of my "friends" who had seen my show several times used my entire straitjacket routine on his promo video. The first person he sent it to was one of my agents, who had also worked as my assistant. She told him flat out that she would not book someone who knocked off other people's material without permission. She called me to find out if I had given him the lines.

The Magic Circle [b]requires[/b] that you get permission from originators to use their material in your paid shows.
Message: Posted by: Dave V (Dec 17, 2006 02:33PM)
I tend to agree here. Gazzo teaches his [i]routine[/i] better than anyone I've seen. The [i]moves[/i] are taught in great detail. However, I don't see anywhere on the videos where he teaches his [i]lines[/i]. Examples, maybe but nowhere does he say "and now you say..."

Stock bits are stock bits. A few maybe, but each and every stock gag and bit assembled in the same way? There has to be a line drawn somewhere. 10% original? 90%original? Personally I don't know where that line is.
Message: Posted by: RobertBloor (Dec 17, 2006 05:05PM)
Let me say something regarding the lines bit...those of you "against" using any of "Gazzo's" lines because they weren't paid for let me ask you this...

[b]Do you think Jim Cellini is wrong?[/b]

Why Cellini? Cause he mentions this very subject on the Art of Street Performing (vol 3 I think)

If you don't know what I'm talking about, eMail Koz and buy a copy of the DVD. Cellini's thoughts are very telling.

Robert
Message: Posted by: SeaDawg (Dec 17, 2006 06:30PM)
The thing about Gazzo, as with any of the great showman performers is that their "Flair and style" comes out in their presentation. Another of my absolute Fav's is Whit Haydn. But some of the great lines that Gazzo, and Haydn and many of the other greats use, have been used in some incarnation before. Are they theives? Nope. Are they great showmen who have adapted routines to make them their own, Darn Straight.

There are lines that Gazzo uses that I would never use... they don't fit my performing style and the venues I am working. And, I am willing to bet that there maybe stuff that I do that Gazzo might not.

do I enjoy watching Gazzos DVD, Whits DVD's and learning how to do things that they have perfected. You betcha... Do I "parrot" their every word ? Hardly... then it wouldn't be me ya "lolly gaggin roustabout jackanapes".

Often times I get the feeling that people wish some panacea, that when they buy an effect or prop, they spend 5 minutes and they have instant stardom. What they fail to appreciate is the hours and hours of pracitce and live performance that have allowed these greats to hone their performances.

Writing original routines and material for even the most time tested of props( ie C& B) is hard work with no real shortcuts. But if it is to become your "own" unique brand that people will come to love you need to pay the dues.

Just my incoherent ramblings....
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 17, 2006 07:00PM)
I love gazzo, hes a friend although he might not admit it in public BUT when gazzo sold that dvd he sold everything he said...should not be an issue here...and yes, by all means buy the cellini dvd

koz
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Dec 17, 2006 07:12PM)
A very good point.

If you want to keep a secret, or yell if someone uses your stuff, perhaps not selling it is in order.
Message: Posted by: Gazzo (Dec 17, 2006 07:36PM)
You're right and all the rest of you are right about
me putting my stuff on DVD. The problem is, is that I
don't expect somebody to take my character, facial
expressions, mannerism, etc and become a bad copy of
me. Anybody knows when they come to my workshops that
I stress in my teaching "take what I am giving you,
use it to your best ability, and use this stuff in
front of a live audience. So you know what its like to
perform. But after a while develop your own style."

I have no problem people using my lines and material.
But I have a problem with people using my stuff as an
exact copy. I find that very offensive


Try this [url=http://geniimagazine.com/forum/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=1;t=002645]Article[/url]
Message: Posted by: RobertBloor (Dec 17, 2006 07:39PM)
[quote]Gazzo: But for somebody to go on the TV and the interviewer
asks the performer where they learn there stuff, and
they lie and don't give me any credit,
(ie) Robert Bloor) these performers need to be pulled
on that.[/quote]

Gazzo,

First off, thank you for adding constructively here. This is something I can respond to.

You state very clearly that I have gone on tv and that an interviewer asked where I learned my stuff. Also that I lied and didn't give you credit.

Okay - from here we can have a dailog.

Gazzo, if I actually did that I apologise 10,000 times. I would never intentionally claim that I learned "all my stuff" on my own accord and not give you some credit.

[b]Could you please remind all of us, (me especially) when & where I was on TV and the interviewer asked me about "my stuff" and I "didn't give you credit?"[/b]

Honestly if that really happend I'm embarrassed about it.

Thanks for being hospitable about this. If I did screw up on TV, I want a chance to correct it.

-Robert

PS: I appreciate your invitation to reply to an "article" on another forum, but that still doesn't answer the question about this so-called TV interview that you're upset about.
Message: Posted by: Kozmo (Dec 17, 2006 07:45PM)
well they cant imitate you and really do it justive can they...theres only one of you...but they sure do try...

I will say this, to all of you

gazzo has had more impact on the art of magic on the street maybe EVER in the history of this art but most certainly in the last 20 years...he is with out a doubt the most imitated magicperformer of our time....


hey gazzo, how are you my long lost friend...PM me your phone...you changed you number didn't you

I want to come and see you....

all the best
your pal
koz
Message: Posted by: RobertBloor (Dec 17, 2006 08:00PM)
Maybe that's part of the problem here...
Perhaps people think I am imitating Gazzo. The video Gazzo is referring to was brought up on the MagicPitch forum once. It was a video from 2001. Six years ago.

I had just started performing for festivals and was using Gazzo routine. I'd bought the tape. And just as Gazzo suggests, or Whit or anyone really - learn from the master and then work in yourself.

I've done that. Sure back then I watched his tape so much the british accent started to rub off. (Was hell to shake it but it's now gone).

Point being - of course in the beginning I did Gazzo's act. And I did it for the exact reason any serious performer would - to learns the ins/outs and whys of that style of show.

Now my show has grown and changed immensley. So much that the 2007 season will rarely see a cup & balls routine. Not that the routine isn't good. Just that it's changed and not conducive to cups any longer.

That's why I resent the implication from other performers who look at old videos and call me a "Gazzo" hack/copycat/imitator or whatever. Would it be appropriate to call Gazzo a "Vernon hack?" Of course not.

Now beyond that, is there anything else that I've done to anger anyone else? If so, let's just lay it all out and give me the chance to apologise.

For years I've listed Gazzo as one of my influences on profiles on various magic forums. But at some point apparently I cheated him on TV. If that's the case I'm sorry for it.

Come on fellas, this just isn't worth it anymore.

-Robert Bloor
Message: Posted by: Tony Iacoviello (Dec 18, 2006 12:54AM)
Gazzo and Cellini have reinvigorated street magic, inspiring many performers over the past 20 years.

Mention of 2 other people in a previous post clouds the issue here, and bringing them into this debate is uncalled for, in my opinion. Iíve seen Gazzo perform many times (I live in Boston), and Iíve seen Koz perform. When Koz performs, I see Koz, not a version of Gazzo. Koz has also been the producer and supplier of many quality productions only a few having to do with street magic. Iíve never seen Frank perform, but as a magic dealer and innovator, he has treated his customer base in a first class manner.

Tony Iacoviello