Monday, March 31, 2014
Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Monday, March 24, 2014
Conjuration Publications has just released the first of FIVE hardback books containing every David Neighbors creation and a ton of never-released material! My copy will be on it's way soon. And once I've devoured the first volume I'll post a review.
Here you can check out details about the David Neighbors Project. And here's a video about the making of the project...
I know this is going to be awesome!
Friday, March 21, 2014
I like to use this flourish at the end of a 3 Fly effect. When the final coin vanishes from the left hand, I close my right hand around all it's coins, as if catching the in-transit 3rd coin. A slight pause and then I roll the coins out into the 3 formation. This helps to build some suspense before the reveal of the 3rd coin. It shows off a bit of skill. And it ends the routine with a nice display.
The mechanics should be pretty easy to pick up from the video. If not, here's a quick tutorial.
Monday, March 17, 2014
The coins come in 10 different colors. I'll use the gold coins for effects like 3 Fly, Gadabout Coins, and one-coin Flurries. Then I'll use the green coins for Spellbound changes.
The colored foil is in 2 halves so it's easy to make a double-sided coin by carefully prying off the foil cover from one side of a coin and adding it to another coin. I'm using mine for Marion Boykin's Copper/Silver-Surprise! I'll produce a silver coin and turn it to green and back to silver several times then turn it to a gold coin. And of course, the gold coin is a great giveaway.
The chocolate coins are 10 cents each and are about the same diameter as an American half dollar, but thicker and much lighter. So some practice is definitely needed before you run out and perform with them. But you'll get the feel for them pretty quickly.
Magic and chocolate, what's not to love!?
Thursday, March 13, 2014
Actually…a quick fly-by of a popular magician’s forum showed references to 19 different gimmicked sets of coin sets! I’m not talking about shells or Scotch & Sodas, or even Flippers, but sets like Triple Threat, Super Triple Coin, TUC, Cerberus, Ultimate 3-Fly, Coin Bomber, Come Fly With Me, N3, Triception, Night Shade, and Mirage Coin Sets.
Now I’m not some tree-hugging purist. I love coin gimmicks. But are we becoming like card magicians and their trick decks; one for forcing, one for card to pocket, one for a vanishing card, one for a "kiss" trick, etc, etc? I can hear some of you doing spit-takes with your lattes. “Our gimmicks are nothing like trick decks!”
It’s true that you can’t buy coin gimmicks at the Dollar Store and our gimmicks tend to cost about 2000% more than the average trick deck. But who are we fooling?
I had the pleasure of working for several years as a magician for Caesar’s Resorts and Casinos. I met and worked with some great magicians. But there was one particular guy whose table-side performances really struck me. He’d approach the table with a brightly-colored fanny pack filled with trick decks. He’d place the fanny pack on the table, take out a deck and do a trick. Then he’d replace it, make a big deal of thoughtfully choosing the next deck to use, take it out and do a different trick. Rinse and repeat for the next 10-12 minutes. A different gimmicked deck for every trick he did.
He got polite applause. But the applause wasn’t for him, it was for all the clever trick decks.
And regretfully, yes, I’ve seen this done by coin guys, too. The coins were in an attractive little leather purse with multiple pockets. But the crime was the same.
Hopefully most coin magicians with a pocket full of gimmicked sets would have the sense to do a pocket switch and never let on that they have anything more than a couple coins on them.
Are we turning into the Fanny Pack guy? How many $200 gaff sets that do Three Fly do you need? Don't forget that Jonathon Townsend and Chris Kenner started that phenomenon with just a couple regular coins at their fingertips.
I think the key is to use as many gimmicks as you can reliably, and INVISIBLY, bring in and out of play. So long as the audience is only aware of a couple coins, then all the applause and adoration go, as they should, to you.
Friends don’t let friends become the Fanny Pack Guy.
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Of course, the coin trick! Duh.
This bit of instant gratification is brought to you by another of the unsung stars of coin magic; Radek Makar. Radek is from Gdynia, Poland and currently lives and performs in Aberdeen. As you will see, his coin magic is clean and to the point. No over-proving or unnecessary moves. In Radek's Into Thin Air three coins turn invisible one at a time and are hung in mid air. The hand the coins vanish from is cleanly displayed after each vanish. Then the three coins are plucked from the air and become visible again. Check it out...
This routine is a real worker. There are no gimmicks and only 3 coins are used. The coins can be borrowed and can be replaced with casino chips, tokens, or even Girl Scout Cookie Thin Mints...mmmmm, Thin Mints. There are no clothing or lighting restrictions and the routine looks as good in person as it does on YouTube. All this for just $5!
Grab Radek's Into Thin Air instant download at VinnyMarini.com or at Chris Wasshuber's Lybrary.com and you'll have a stunning anytime/anywhere miracle by tonight. Then you can use it to impress that cutie at Starbucks as she brews you up their latest diabetic nightmare.
Thursday, March 6, 2014
Enter the Hip Zip Bracelet!
A Hip Zip Bracelet is a brightly-colored, plastic bracelet that is also a zipper. The look is hip, modern, colorful, and fun. The bracelet has some stiffness to it so you can hold it in the correct position for most of your favorite purse frame moves. There is nothing to carry around because the Hip Zip Bracelet rides along on your wrist. When you’re done, just hook it back onto your wrist and sally forth to the next group. And it’s a great conversation-starter, which helps lead you into the magic. The Hip Zip has a fun look that works for men or women, young or old.
I spent the evening working with the Hip Zip. I tried out a couple of my favorite routines that use a purse frame, including Curtis Kam’s Coercive Purse. I found that only a bit of re-blocking is needed to use the Hip Zip. Some routines required a bit more adapting, like Shoot Ogawa’s seminal Neo Purse Frame, but the results are definitely worth it.
I strapped on a black Hip Zip and headed out to my regular restaurant gig. The reactions were great. I even had a couple people comment on the bracelet before I did, which made for the perfect lead-in.
I got my Hip Zips by dumping $5 worth of quarters into a Wal-Mart vending machine. But, I have since found some good deals online.
If you're having trouble finding these in your area, or if you want a little more creative control over the look of your zipper bracelet, here is an excellent (and very easy) tutorial on how to make your own Zipper Bracelet.
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
This 50+ year old video gives us a glimpse at the mastery Cardini had over coins. I especially like his production of four coins from Edge Palm/Classic Palm around the :40 mark. This rare footage was shot on a cruise by a Dr. Morris Young and has been lovingly restored by Steven Max Droge.