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Ludwig Van
Toronto Montreal

Video: OK Go is poster band for the web-savvy, but it's not as easy as it looks

By John Terauds on February 27, 2012

If you’re not one of the 16 million to have seen this video over the past 22 days, you need to see how OK Go, a pop band that has gone multiply viral on You Tube over the past couple of years, makes music with a car and a junkyard’s worth of accessories:

These very clever boys are among the so very hip poster children of a new wave of fame-by-social media. But it doesn’t take much of a scratch below the surface to reveal that, without someone’s deep pockets, today’s video stars are no more likely than yesterday’s dude-with-a-guitar-in-the-subway to make a go of it.

John Terauds

John Terauds

John Terauds, the founder of Musical Toronto, is currently a Divinity student at University of Toronto and a church music director. He joined the Toronto Star in 1988, was the classical music critic from 2005 to 2012, and continues as a freelance critic for the paper. He is the co-author of Roy Thomson Hall: A Portrait, a book written with Toronto Star Colleague, William Littler.
John Terauds

The band hasn’t released an amount, but Kevin Mayer, the director of advertising and sales promotion for Chevrolet in the United State, has admitted that the video cost the same amount to make as a TV commercial, which puts us somewhere around half-a-million dollars.

The carmaker’s contributions included two cars, two weeks in a soundstage/warehouse where the band could perfect the instrument-impact effects with the help of an acoustical engineer flown in from Boston, and four days of filming in the Mojave Desert.

The band converted its music tempos to miles-per-hour, and, with the help of a metronome inside the car, were all set.

Except that the sound balance had to be fixed in the editing suite.

Yes, you too can make a viral video.

John Terauds

John Terauds

John Terauds

John Terauds, the founder of Musical Toronto, is currently a Divinity student at University of Toronto and a church music director. He joined the Toronto Star in 1988, was the classical music critic from 2005 to 2012, and continues as a freelance critic for the paper. He is the co-author of Roy Thomson Hall: A Portrait, a book written with Toronto Star Colleague, William Littler.
John Terauds
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