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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The workers » » Jazz Aces by Kane/Ortiz (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Jay
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Hi all. I am learning (and getting fairly good at) the version of Jazz Aces that is on Ammar's ETMCM vol. 3. I do have a few questions about some of the moves, but don't know if I can talk about it here. Can anyone with good proficiency at this effect please PM me or respond here, so we can talk about it? I love this effect, by the by. I can't stop practicing it Smile

Thanks!

Jay Smile
Platt
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I don't know which move you have questions about, but I really don't like the opening move to get the cards in place. Or perhaps I just don't like Ammars handling of it. I'd rather show each ace fairly go in its place and then do a double for the final one. Somewhere along the line I quit doing Jazz Aces. I don't know quite why, but MacDonald's Aces seems to get a much stronger reaction. Maybe for this effect , using a gimmick is worth it. It's just a lot cleaner.
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MattSedlak
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You can get just as strong a reaction with Jazz Aces or even some standard 16 card assemblies. It's all presentation that counts. I have played around with many of the various assemblies and now perform only 3. One is my handling of the standard ace assembly with the O'Henry ending (similar to LSD Aces). The other is my handling of Jazz Aces (which eliminated some moves I did not like). The third is a handling of the No Palm Aces or Open Travelers premise. The MacDonald's Aces plays strong IMO, because it can be done essentially moveless, while the other routines all require quite a few moves. However, if you can do the moves without making them look like anything then you get esentially the same thing. I don't see how the gaffed assembly can be stronger then the O'Henry ending either.
Jay
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Thanks Matt and Platt (!) for responding so far. Yes, Platt, my primary concern is finding patter for explaining why I am taking the bottom card to the top (right before the Elmsley), and also why I am transposing the bottom 2 cards for the top 2 (after each Ace revelation). Any way to make this seem natural or at least more subtle? Thanks again for any help.

Jay Smile
Mark Ennis
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I perform Jazz Aces and I use an idea of Mike Skinner's. It can't be done impromptu because I use 4 Kinds of Hearts and 4 Jokers but it plays very strong and I give the cards away.
ME
Stefan Rupar
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Just to muddy the waters further; if you have problems with Jazz Aces (are these vanishes or transpositions?!) you might want to check out a Phil Goldstein effect called Relative Interchange from his Focus book, recently reissued by Hermetic Press. The trick is very similar to Jazz but the plot makes a lot more sense. Rafael Benatar does a nifty version of RI on the first volume of his A-1
tapes.

John Bannon has published at least three versions of Jazz Aces, attempting to improve the trick. Check his books and Linking Ring
contributions.

And the Cafe's own David Neighbors marketed an over-the-top, blizzard blow-off version through Mike Powers. I bought it from Hank Lee.
hobbymagic
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In response to the questions by AnOctopus:
I don't believe that is necessary to explain, with patter, every move that you make. Just before the elmsley count say that you are using four indifferent cards. Casually count them and make the tranposition (don't make a big deal out of it). Likewise with the bottom to top transposition, you show the cards openly and fairly and just do it. I have never had anyone question it.
Mark Ennis
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"John Bannon has published at least three versions of Jazz Aces, attempting to improve the trick"

Very interesting comment. I find it interesting that magicians feel the need to improve an effect that I believe is one of the strongest Ace Assemblies I have performed for lay people, mainly because of its clarity. It gets progressively more impossible until it becomes absolutely impossible and the cards are examinable at the end. (which is great because it is not uncommon for spectators to want to see if you have extra cards or to see if there is something fishy). What is it that needs to be improved?

In my opinion, some of the improvements that I have read are bad versions of this effect.
ME
tboehnlein
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Jay sorry for not responding to your PM earlier, however I believe you are over thinking the process. Not every move has to have a patter line or reason for being. I sometimes mention that the ace begins to take on the properties of the surrounding cards & the odd card(6 or 9) begins to take on the properties of the ace it is in contact with but even when done silently I have never had the moves questioned.
Stephen Long
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Quote:
On 2002-06-18 15:16, tboehnlein wrote:
Not every move has to have a patter line or reason for being.


Agreed.
But when I performed this effect (I've stopped now, for reasons which I'll explain in a bit) I felt extremely awkward transferring cards from the bottom to the top after each ace.

Here's how I got over it:
Before the elmsley count, I made a gesture with the bottom card while talking to someone.
When I had made my comment I put the card back on top of the four card packet.
Before each ace, I made a similar gesture with the bottom two cards, the gesture was usually made along with a comment about how the ace "invisibly tiptoed" (that's how I used to present it) over to join its buddies.

I don't perform this effect anymore because I feel that it is simply the same effect three times over.
If it got stronger as it went (like routines such as the ambitious card) then I would almost certainly perform it.
The problem was that I generally found that my biggest reaction came after the first ace.
The reactions sort of diminished from that point on.

I also like there to be some sort of POW!/slap you in the face/completely unexpected element at the end of my effects.
Jazz aces simply doesn't have this.
Your spectators know exactly what's going to happen to the second two aces after you've shown them what's happened to the first one.
The effect has to be weakened by this.
The element of surprise (and/or suspense) is key in magic.

I just don't think Jazz aces has got that certain "je ne sais quoi" that would make me want to carry on performing it.

My thoughts,
Stephen

:coolspot:
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Mark Ennis
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"If it got stronger as it went (like routines such as the ambitious card) then I would almost certainly perform it. "

It does get stronger. It gets more impossible. By the time you get to the last ace, the audience should be convinced that the last card on the table is the last ace.

"The problem was that I generally found that my biggest reaction came after the first ace.
The reactions sort of diminished from that point on. "

I get the opposite reaction. The strongest transposition when I perform it is the final ace. The audience is convinced that the I am holding 4 indifferent cards and are that much more convinced because they KNOW the last card on the table is an ace. When it ends up on the leader ace pile, it is a miracle in their eyes.

I have always gotten an incredibly strong reaction from this effect. It is easy to follow and is one of 3 ace assemblies I perform (the other 2 are Hitchcock Aces and McDonald's Aces).
ME
Stephen Long
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Quote:
On 2002-06-18 20:53, Mark Ennis wrote:
By the time you get to the last ace, the audience should be convinced that the last card on the table is the last ace.


They should be, but if it was an ace then why wouldn't I show it to them?

And I don't see how it does get more impossible.
The same thing happens three times in a slightly different way.
Why should they be any more convinced that the final ace is an ace than
they were on the first ace?
(Did that make enough sense?)

These are only my very personal and minor quibbles.
If I do any sort of ace assembly trick I like the audience to clearly see where I'm putting the cards. It is for this reason that I'd take Jim Swain's "Shipwrecked" or David Regal's "Streamlined Assembly" over Jazz Aces any day.
Both are equally impromptu but far more powerful becuase you can clearly show where you are putting the cards before they assemble elsewhere.

But if Jazz Aces works for ya then by all means perform it.
It is simply my opinion that there are more powerful alternatives.

Stephen
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CWilcox
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For what it's worth, Ed Marlo agreed with Stephen... in his handling, the last Ace is shown before it travels.

From Marlo:

"Having witnessed the original Peter Kane Jazz Aces, I noted that by the time the performer got to the last Ace there wasn't any surprise... This also led, on several occasions, for the layman to question whether that last card was really an Ace."


(See "The Card Magic of Edward Marlo," pages 154-156, for Marlo's version of Jazz Aces.)

CW
Mark Ennis
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"And I don't see how it does get more impossible. The same thing happens three times in a slightly different way. Why should they be any more convinced that the final ace is an ace than they were on the first ace? (Did that make enough sense?) "

Yes, your question makes sense. Here is my answer (which will explain my passion for the effect): (Undoubtedly my answer will be very confusing to read, so please forgive me)

Assuming the audience truly believes you are using 4 Aces and 4 black spot cards (and they will be if they get to examine the cards either before or after the effect if they need to) - In regards to the final ace, the situation at hand is there are 2 aces (face up) on the face up leader Ace. These are the first and second aces to travel. There is one card face down on the table which should be assumed is the last ace. If you do an Elmsley count to show that the cards in your hand are 4 black spot cards (and the audience is convinced they are assuming your Elmsley is convincing), and the audience sees the 3 face up aces (first, second and leader), and if they are truly convinced you are using 8 cards - (4 aces and 4 black spot cards), then the audience will be convinced (instinctively) and will know that the card that is face down MUST BE the last ace (by process of elimination). Since you did it twice already, they will be burning the area with their eyes because there is no way you could switch the cards at this point (unbenounced to them you already did thanks to the one ahead principle) so when you perform the final transposition, it is an absolute miracle in their eyes.

(Sorry if my explanation sounded more like I was prooving a math formula, especially if you do not like math !!).

This is why it is a miracle to lay audiences.

(By the way, if you are performing "shipwrecked" and "Streamlined Assembly", you do have some powerful weapons in your arsenal).


"From Marlo:

"Having witnessed the original Peter Kane Jazz Aces, I noted that by the time the performer got to the last Ace there wasn't any surprise... This also led, on several occasions, for the layman to question whether that last card was really an Ace." "

What I am about to say may make some people upset, but Ed Marlo did not really perform for lay audiences. He spent most of his time performing for other magicians and his wife. Ed Marlo was an incredibly influential card man and created many incredible effects (some are in my repertoire), but as far as layman psychology goes, I would take alot of what he had to say on that subject with a grain of salt. Knowing the reactions I get from performing this effect in addition to the fact that Jazz Aces is in the working repertoire of professional magicians like Darwin Ortiz and the late Mike Skinner, I am more willing to listen to what they would have to say on that subject.
ME
Scott F. Guinn
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As is usuallythe case in these situations, it is all dependent upon your presentation and your ability to SELL it.

It is up to you (not the audience nor even the trick) to build suspense and maintain interest. It is up to you to MAKE the last ace the "best"--to CONVINCE them that you are doing what you say under increasingly difficult situations.

You've GOT to SELL the effect with any trick--the best trick in the world doesn't perform itself!

(And for the record, I do Jazz Aces all the time, and it has NEVER failed to "play".)
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MattSedlak
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As far as method is concerned it is fairly easy to work out a handling where the aces can be shown and there are no illogical transfers. That combined with a good presentation makes it a strong routine. Is it stronger then the standard assemblies with 16 cards? Some people would argue that because it has less cards it is stronger. (Darwin mentions this in Strong Magic) I still have yet to see a Jazz Aces routine that can play stronger then an O'Henry Ace ending 16 card assembly, though they are both strong in very different ways.
CWilcox
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Mark:
I certainly agree with the points you raised in response to the Marlo quote. His work on "layman pscyhology" should certainly not be taken as gospel, and I didn't mean to imply otherwise.

I do think that, all else being equal, it's better to show the last ace than to not show the last ace. "All else being equal" is probably a personal call, though I'm sure most would agree Marlo didn't quite get there.

CW
Mark Ennis
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"I still have yet to see a Jazz Aces routine that can play stronger then an O'Henry Ace ending 16 card assembly, though they are both strong in very different ways. "

I agree. I actually perform 3 different ace assemblies. As far as ranking by strength (1 being strongest), Jazz Aces would fall as number 3 for me. Number 2 on my list would be "Hitchcock Aces" (which has the O'Henry ending).

"I do think that, all else being equal, it's better to show the last ace than to not show the last ace"

I agree with this as well. This is the ultimate convincer since the card is staring them in the face. This brings me to my favorite ace assembly I perform (strongest of the ones I do), and that would be the McDonald's Aces.
ME
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