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Case of curious cellphone, bandana and Greyson Chance’s perfect microphone

Oprah Winfrey records own show on cellphonePT Barnum would have been a terror on Youtube –I’m certainly sobered to see what fools America every time. Is sudden-tween-throb Greyson Chance’s talent for real? Too soon to say. But the 6th grade sound man at Cheyenne School of Edmond, Oklahoma has unlikely genius. * What’s hard to believe about doctors bandaging Bret Michaels’ massive brain hemorrhage with his signature headband? * And my favorite, Oprah Winfrey recording a show performance with her cellphone to attest to her surprise at “the coolest thing ever!”

Oprah
It happened ages ago (in blog-years) but television talk shows bind these three example together. Do you remember Oprah’s anniversary whatsit, taped like a big tailgate party in downtown Chicago? Oprah stood there on the outdoor stage beside the Black Eyed Peas and held her cellphone up, aimed at the audience, as if the dozen or more cameras on cranes, wires and rails weren’t going to be enough. And the crowd erupted in spontaneous dance, although it was choreographed, and a concept swiped from a European video. But Oprah’s deal went viral because, OMG would you believe it, and there was Oprah, OMG’ding herself, careful to record it to show her friends in case they wouldn’t have believe her, or watched the show.

Now how many of you believe the media diva even has her own phone, much less carries it or knows how it works?

Watching the video again, an establishing shot before the music begins shows someone in the audience (who later would turn out to be a dancer) aiming their cellphone like a camera, in case the audience at home needed a reminder that’s what normal people do today, and that’s what Oprah would be doing, to confound your awe with hers. Compound.

After the video had done its viral thing, Oprah had all the crowdsourced uploads removed, being unlicensed and all. I think it was really because her feigned incredulity wasn’t going to pass muster. Better a memory gone viral than video evidence of Oprah taking her viewers for fools.

Bret
Bret Michael’s blue bandana as he reclined on the hospital bed on the cover of People Magazine was just too silly for words. No doubt America wouldn’t know him without his bandana wig, so it was definitely an art director’s call.

Alright, it wasn’t a video, but the internet rumors went viral. Fans started to twitter about an oddly fortuitous recovery which put him back on the Celebrity Apprentice season finale, so now poor Bret is back in the hospital to prove it wasn’t a PR stunt, this time for a hole-in-the-heart, probably something to do with a tatoo, in any case nothing to interfere with his headband.

Chance Michael Grayson plays Cheyenne School 6th Grade show at Edmond, OklahomaGreyson
Brand-spanking-fresh-phenom Greyson Michael Chance wowed everyone on Youtube, and Ellen’s people, reportedly before his views had even hit five-digits –are talent scouts that grassroots? He encored with the same brilliant performance on her show, thus certifying his authentic talent, based on the law that lightening can’t be fixed twice. Although the equalizer setting, for lack of a technical term, was remarkably identical, wasn’t it? Same tweaked toning, same very attentive fader, especially if it wasn’t the same microphone.

Seriously, SNL, of the notoriously bad music soundboard, should hire whoever miked that primary school performance.

On the subject of expensive equipment, how often do you see a shiny grand piano at a public school choir concert?

Although the camera work was shaky, the cameraman kept an interesting crop on Greyson, framed by the waiting choir girls. It reminded me of the soldier backdrop they used to give President Bush. Authenticity came of the development that none of the girls were compelled to look too interested, I’m guessing that was sheer fortuity. The result was that Young Mr. Chance was strangely placed off-center, the better to feature the girls. An actual parent would have framed their son to show his feet at the pedals, I guarantee you.

The close crop remained even as Greyson finished and the school emcee offered her remarks, her head off camera. The lens never zoomed, fitting for a digital still camera which cannot zoom in video mode, or because appearances of homemade authenticity be damned, broadcast editors will not abide zoom.

But Greyson gave the game away when he took his bow, aimed not at the audience, but directly at the camera. You’d figure he already had countless home recordings of his Lady Gaga cover, both practice and dinner guest performances. On this stage the camerawork was let to look improvised, like a parent’s afterthought, while Cherub Gaga sang the performance straight ahead, in the same direction to which the emcee addressed the audience. So to whom was Mr. Chance taking his bow?

One thought on “Case of curious cellphone, bandana and Greyson Chance’s perfect microphone

  1. We should not allow Greyson and his genius be destroyed by chequebook wielding money grubbers. 20 million and more of us (YouTube hitters) must have some poke! If anyone younger than me wants to start a ‘Greyson Chance Appreciation and Support Society’, I’ll be the first to subscribe. I’ve put some GC stuff on http://twitter.com/duckbiter . There you will see 3 videos of Greyson’s performance from different angles – the most salient for this discussion shot by Kelly Cheek, Greyson’s music teacher.

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