'The First Nowell' Anon
20 March 2014, 18:21
Bach on a train, Bach in a forest, Bach played by a man in a muppet suit. As if you needed an excuse to watch 11 incredible Baroque-inspired videos...
1. The Boomwhacker prelude
Bach's famous opening to his Well-Tempered Clavier, in a masterful performance on tuned percussion tubes. We say it's just the right mix of genius and bizarre.
2. Bach takes to the bottle
It's genius, it's mesmerising, and a little bit creepy. This YouTube user turns to half-filled bottles and stop motion video for this tour of Johann Sebastian's contrapuntal masterpiece. Fortunately tomorrow is glass recycling day.
3. Bach meets the Muppets
Thanks to an over-enthusiastic cleaner and a rogue feather duster, this muppet's Bach is worse than his bite. (Sorry.) Still, props to the musician who's managed to memorise the music and play it whilst sporting a full-body dog suit.
4. Bach on a glass harp
As if Bach's Toccata and Fugue in D minor wasn't creepy enough. Swapping the booming organ for the eerie glass harp, this impressive percussionist is guaranteed to send chills down your spine. Although we can't help thinking our friend Bach would've preferred something a little stronger in those glasses…
5. Bach… multitracked
This is what happens when you let a Mr Bean lookalike loose with a webcam and Bach score. Odd. Yet strangely compelling.
6. Bach meets jazz
When it comes to jazzing up Bach's mighty Organ Fugue, it doesn't come better than the Grammy Award-winning Swingle Singers. The metallic dresses and crazy perms are just a bonus.
7. Bach on a Japanese forest xylophone
If Bach plays in a forest, and there's no one around to hear it, does it make a sound? We'll give you a clue: it does - and it's remarkably like the Cantata 147. Prepare to be amazed.
8. Bach on a Möbius strip
If you were in any doubt as to Bach's genius, just take a look at this mathematical masterpiece. Read the music left to right for a seemingly simple Baroque tune. Read it backwards, and it's verging on impressive. But when you transcribe the music onto the one-sided, one-edged surface known as a Möbius strip, you can play the two parts together at the same time for ETERNITY.
9. Bach on the train
If only every morning commute could be like this. From now on, we're ditching the laptop and the latte to indulge in an entire train carriage of cellists performing Bach's Cello Suite No. 1. Doesn't look like it makes finding a seat any easier though.
10. Bach on the tuba
On paper, this just shouldn't work. Poor old J.S. is no doubt spinning in his grave at the suggestion of turning his flighty Cello Suite No. 1 into a lumbering tuba duet, but we'll be honest: this is awesome.
11. Bach… and a Lady Gaga fugue
Lady Gaga borrows music from Bach's Well Tempered Clavier in her 2009 hit Bad Romance. (Hear us out on this one.) Some bright spark played Gaga at her own game and composed a Bach-inspired fugue using 'Bad Romance' as the subject. Add a healthy dose of video trickery and a carefully created MIDI file, and voila: a full orchestra, playing a Lady Gaga Bach fugue. Genius.
12. Bach on the dancefloor
Bach. On a flashing keyboard. Played by two blokes in a shopping centre. With their feet. That's our dance mat rendered obsolete, then.