Video of US Champion Nordic Thunder's Stormy Victory
David Ayling, the cinematographer for our favorite video (and second favorite video) of the season, has done it again! (Make sure you full screen it with the arrows in the lower-right corner to achieve the maximum effect.)
Hometown hero NORDIC THUNDER takes Championship Belt (photos updated)
NORDIC THUNDER (Justin Howard) spent all Friday conjuring the storms and still had energy left over to win the US Air Guitar National Finals. He will be appearing on the Lopez Tonight Show on Tuesday. Unless otherwise noted, All photos by Brigette Sullivan for Outer Focus Photos Courtesy of Time Out Chicago.
It has taken nine years for America to recover from the shock of competitive air guitar. Now, as US Air Guitar enters its second decade, the story of competitive air guitar is no longer that it exists, but rather how each individual contender uniquely excels at his craft and how it advances the sport itself.
Guess what’s circulating from that ceiling fan? Photo by Brigette Sullivan for Outer Focus Photos Courtesy of Time Out Chicago.
Saturday night twenty-two uniquely excellent competitors from across the country descended upon Chicago for a sold-out show at the historic Metro. From the hip streets of New York to the dusty pueblos bordering El Paso, TX; from the shores of San Diego to the heights of Denver, they came here to answer one question: who is the finest professional air guitarist in America, and who will represent the stars and stripes against two dozen other countries at the World Air Guitar Championships in Finland?
After our 10-week search across the country, America roaringly answered that question: NORDIC THUNDER (Justin Howard). Nordic Thunder was clad in presumably unwashable viking leather chain mail and smelled like six metal bands sharing an RV. After entering the compulsory round at the top of the heap, Nordic sealed the deal with his signature Power Slide, leaving two long tracks of blood wherever his bare knees took him.
But it was a close race.
DC’s TOMMY FRETLESS (Adam Lee), who injured himself while training, refused his trainer’s orders to sit out the finals and instead played through the pain on one leg.
The mark of a true air guitar champion is the ability to play regardless of the circumstances, because all national champs will have to perform to whatever bizarre compulsory track they are dealt by the Finns on the world stage. Fretless’ uber appropriate choice of Cinderella’s “Don’t Know What You Got,” and the courage he summoned to play with his dominant foot broken, took him to such a transcendental place that he possibly delivered the finest performance of his 5-year career – although to be fair, I’m a little emotional and his 2011 DC performance did impregnate a whole lot of faces.
(Tommy Fretless photo by Brigette Sullivan for Outer Focus Photos Courtesy of Time Out Chicago.)
New York City’s AIRISTOTLE (Matt Burns), the youngest competitor of the season for three straight years, finished just a half point behind Nordic Thunder. It’s funny to look back and remember that at the ripe age of 17 in early 2008, his mother drove him from their latchkey apartment in New York City down to Philadelphia because it was the only all ages event of the tour. Everyone present that night knew they were witnessing the future of competitive air guitar unfold before their eyes. Barely a flyweight, the kid was so thin and pale he was nearly translucent. But the rookie was still unpolished and would not advance to the National arena for another couple years. Saturday night, his nerdy-guy work ethic and 125-calorie diet paid off when he finished second place on the National stage.
Sinewy superstar AIRISTOTLE (Matt Burns) finished second Saturday night but took first place in the “lost virginity” contest in his hotel room later that night. Photo by Brigette Sullivan for Outer Focus Photos Courtesy of Time Out Chicago.
Portland’s TONY TAPATIO (Antonio Cervantes) is almost too good looking for air guitar,
and the stereotypical crowd of husky Chicagoan air guitar enthusiasts reminded him of this with constant jeers and heckling. Frankly, he could easily be a lead man for a sexy Latin-flavored revival of the boy band era. But if you look past his dreamy smile and flowing dark locks and an outlined junkbox behind leopard print spandex you’ll find one amazing competitor. First of all, Tapatio came out chewing gum and stuck it down his pants. Then at one point in his performance he played his air guitar inside an air vagina, then he licked it, then he wiped his mouth on his ascot. After his performance he freshened up by removing the ABC (already been chewed) gum from his genitals and popped it back into his mouth. And believe it or not, backstage he’s both sweet and quite shy; but on stage he’s a Ravishing Rick Rude for the new millennium.
(Tony Tapatio Photo by Brigette Sullivan for Outer Focus Photos Courtesy of Time Out Chicago.)
By awarding these three competitors with some of the highest marks of the evening, most experts agree that celebrity judge and Godless liberal Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh, Wisconsin State Legislature) got most of the evening right, except perhaps for a serious misinterpretation of Kansas City’s MEAN MELIN (Eric Melin). Hintz commented that Melin did “not even looking like an air guitarist.” Of course, serious followers of competitive air guitar recognize Melin as a natural and one of the sport’s finest ambassadors. In fact, Mean Melin bleeds air guitar – but he also bleeds kitten whiskers and glee. Anything but mean, I’m certain he won’t hold a grudge against the distinguished gentleman from Wisconsin. To set things straight, upon hearing Hintz’s quibble USAG co-commissioner Cedric Devitt promptly dumped a beer over the judges’ heads. The judges, who drink for free on the USAG bar tab, would later return the favor. Afterward we all got plastered at Gingerman Tavern. Good times.
MEAN MELIN (Eric Melin) is the heart, soul, and mustache of US Air Guitar. Photo by Brigette Sullivan for Outer Focus Photos Courtesy of Time Out Chicago.
So while some competitors argued that all of Saturday’s judges were “unfair,” “ignorant,” and “total effing knob ends,” I’d argue that if the judges were so wrong, how were the evening’s undeniably best performers also the highest scorers? And how did the night’s best performer of all end up receiving the championship belt?
Hintz and celebrity co-judges Ben Bowman and HOT LIXX HULAHAN (Craig Bilmeier, 2008 World Air Guitar Champion) another two coastal powerhouses into the compulsory round, neither of whom managed to finish in the top five overall but both of whom clearly had more fun than the rest of us combined: San Diego’s LT. FACEMELTER (Jason Farnan) and Philadelphia’s WINDHAMMER (Rob Weychert). Facemelter’s shore-leave-in-Saigan, “here guys have a brewsky on me” personality contrasted the legendary stone cold countenance that’s made Windhammer a terrifying fan favorite. Even when last night’s master of airemonies, Björn Türoque (Dan Crane) whispered into his ear “kitten fart” and “unicorn money shot,” Windhammer didn’t crack the slightest smile.
LT. FACEMELTER (Jason Farnan) detonates some PBR’s into the crowd. Photo by Brigette Sullivan for Outer Focus Photos Courtesy of Time Out Chicago.
WINDHAMMER (Rob Weychert) always stretches before not smiling. Photo by Brigette Sullivan for Outer Focus Photos Courtesy of Time Out Chicago.
In a confidential e-mail between judges he didn’t know I’d leak, judge Ben Bowman offered this: “What’s great about air guitar is that there’s plenty of room for all kinds of acts - the weird, the classic, the flashy and the simple. Who knew a man on crutches could captivate an audience and soar past many competitors blessed with two functional legs? I loved it when we agreed, but I respect the disagreements, too.
“Ultimately, everyone gave Chicago a great show and air guitar looks poised for greatness in the years ahead [ … ] I loved every sweaty minute of it. What a great bunch of weirdos. What a great celebration of rock. What a magical experience.”
HOT LIXX HULAHAN (Craig Billmeier), who co-judged Saturday’s event, also performed a half time show with former US champ WILLIAM OCEAN (Andrew Litz). Photos of that performance will post later. Photo by Gabi Porter.
So much more can and will be written about Saturday night, because you know what? It may have been the best National Championship I have ever quietly conducted from the sound booth. And WILLIAM OCEAN and HOT LIXX HULAHAN’S half time show made me squirt myself; DREAMCATCHER (Ryan Layman) air-killed himself; Shred Boyardee was reunited with his brothers through the power of air guitar; ROMEO DANCECHEETAH (Matt Cornelison) changed his style 360° and still fucking crushed it; The WGN Cubs broadcasters spent an entire inning discussing Nordic’s chops; Tony Tapatio is Hot Lixx’s mom’s favorite performer; TETRAD (Michael Daniels) and DOUG THE THUNDER STRUCK (Doug Stroock), who narrowly missed their own shots at the Title Belt, did such amazing jobs as our Secret Service decoys that Metro asked me if they’d be available to bust some heads at an upcoming Altamont Revival Show …
- - - And I personally waited five years just to push the spacebar twenty-two times Saturday night. I can’t explain how good Chicago felt, so here’s the best I can do: it was an entire week of airness. But the East Coast is nearly awake and we’ve got a shit ton of folks who will need something to read with their Monday morning bloody marys they pour into Starbucks cups while working their desk jobs.
Go get ‘em in Finland, Nordic. You’ve got the brain and the brawn because you’re the thinking man’s neanderthal.
So major league high fives to hometown hero and 2011 US Champion Nordic Thunder, and my deepest gratitude to Chicago and all the competitors who soiled them sheets and flooded them streets all night long.
Ten minutes after the show had ended, security (black shit) remained unable to disperse the crowd. Photo by Brigette Sullivan for Outer Focus Photos Courtesy of Time Out Chicago.
US Air Guitar Blogger ATC (West Hays) would like to thank the ever-dimpled BJÖRN TÜROQUE (Dan Crane), our Master of Airemonies, the face of US Air Guitar and feeder of our bellies, and the rest of the USAG touring crew for another face-melting, scrotal-shattering, doozy of a season; ZERO PROSPECTS (Kate Gray), for doing most things the rest of us cannot, like writing journalist improv at a press conference or operating a forklift for the back drop, and for learning new things like number two in public restrooms; to SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS (Nathaniel Hays) for getting us on the front page of everything always and sort of staying out of the way sometimes when things get crazy; to HOT LIXX HULAHAN for taking the hardest job on the tour and somehow sending the best folks to the top every time, and for reading the blog with his mother, Janis; lastly, to co-commissioners KRISTON RUCKER and CEDRIC DEVITT, the sole reasons behind Competitive Air Guitar in the United States and the best summer job a minimally literate potty-mouthed blogger could ever ask for.
Huffington Post to USAG: "Don't playa hate, aggregate!"
US Air Guitar is on the cover of Huffington Post Chicago right now. Seems not even the mighty Nordic Thunder has the ferocity to withstand the aggregative powers of RSS 2.0. Here’s a direct link to the article.
You know you’ve found the right city of weirdos when the news wants to broadcast this sort of thing at 6 AM. Full screen this sucker – it’s some of Hot Lixx and RDC’s best news work all season. Listen to news man orgasm.
Six String General (Tim Granlund) takes San Diego’s regional air guitar competition.
Friday night in San Diego wrapped up the 2011 Regional Tour with the perfect bookend to another thrilling season: SIX STRING GENERAL (Tim Granlund), after competing for years from sea to shining sea, earned his stripes at the jam-packed San Diego show and a shot at the US Title.
The huge crowd in San Diego was partly due to the heroics of our old pal Dryw Keltz, who penned this piece in the San Diego Reader. He writes in his interview with Lt. Facemelter, “Before our discussion began, Facemelter tried several times to order a table keg of Pabst Blue Ribbon from the barista. She informed him that not only were they a coffee shop that didn’t have a liquor license of any sort, but that PBR didn’t even come in the table keg variety. Facemelter was agitated. The time was 8:25 AM.”
Earlier in the week 6SG had little competition lined up at San Diego regional, with only a handful of performers signed up for the show at Casbah. Ticket sales were fantastic, yet somehow sign-ups were down to Milwaukeean levels. Experts speculate that much of San Diego’s potential young talent was intimidated by local strongholds such as Lt. Facemelter (Jason Farnan), Six String General, and Shred Boy RD (Gregory Pittelli). However, all but 6SG had been recently disqualified from competing in Friday’s event because they took titles in neighboring competitions earlier in the season.
As word of this vacuum spread throughout San Diego – mostly by way of Lt. Facemelter himself – new talent emerged from every vast opening of the whale’s vagina. Newcomers Mr-Fan-Stache-tic, Guitarasaurus Wrecks, Jolly Green Shredding Machine, and Home Rucker (Caitlin Rucker) all advanced to the second round. Such a strong rookie showing in the compulsory round is completely unheard of in competitive air guitar.
For unlike the Rock-Paper-Scissor Championships, schmucks can’t just walk off the street and win the title. Our schmucks have to practice in their mom’s basements first, then be humiliated a few times in front of hundred of strangers.
Yet round two was populated almost entirely by first-time competitors, all of whom made the rookie mistake of blowing their loads in round one without leaving anything delicious for us to consume in round two. And that’s where the trouble started for celebrity judge ATC.
The title of San Diego’s finest professional air guitarist was going to be conferred upon one of two people: Veterans Six String General or Capt. Nowhere (Joseph Demaree). The two performers are polar opposites: 6SG is polished, handsome, and seems to have his every move mapped out perfectly. Capt. Nowhere, on the other hand, twitches and tosses around the stage and floor until every single crowd member has his or her personal space invaded twice.
Celebrity douche ATC felt Capt. Nowhere’s second round act blew everything else we saw out of the water. Yet 6SG’s round one act was by far the best of the bunch. Co-celebrity judges HOT LIXX HULAHAN and writer Dryw Keltz left the final decision in ATC’s clammy, panicked hands. ATC, who hides his immense stage fright behind immense dickheadedness (a trick he learned from confirmed blog reader Jason Jones), knew not how to proceed. So he pleaded with the audience. For a long time. A really long time. And then even longer. Longer still. And even longer than that.
Until finally it was apparent no one was going to sack up and punch me, which would have provided an excuse not to be the one who decided which totally deserving competitor would take the San Diego title. So I tossed up a score and let excel work her magic.
I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again: judging is the worst gig on the fucking planet, and I hereby retire as third-string backup judge. Christ almighty I nearly humped the last leg of the tour! So I want to end on a high note, knowing I sent the best guy to Chicago, so that’s what I’m doing. Congratulations, Six String General – see you in da Shy.
SHRED BOY R.D. (Greg Pittelli) before leaping backwards from Key Club’s VIP section to the stage.
What happened to all those super important knob ends from last year, with their lighting notes printed in triplicate, waivers for us to sign that their “agent said is, like, just a formality, really.” What happened to their backstage demands for “sustainable artisan water”?
No b*llshit, following up a pretty epic stint in the Pacific Northwest, were seventeen sweethearts of epic proportion. Last night at LA’s Key Club was just good clean fun. I mean, when was the last time you saw a Druid spray confetti all over his tits?
Newcomer DR. FEEL MEDIOCRE (Mike Gerdwagen) finished with the other bottom-third of competitors who performed somewhat mediocrely. Also new to the scene: STYLES McFLASH (Michael Ayoob), who impressed me backstage with his extensive knowledge of the sport. “C-Diddy inspired me, so did Hot Lixx in 2008. And Airhab, he makes me laugh. But the French champ doesn’t do it for me.” Of course, as we all know yesterday was Bastille Day so Styles finished about a half point shy of round 2. Just ahead of Styles was veteran KEI TSUTSUMI (real name, pronounced “KAY”), who thrashed his trademark Kung Fu rockabilly and nearly made round two despite pulling a deuce in the performance draw.
I liked skinny man POONIEBOMBER (Michael Arana) and his all green costume that didn’t mean a whole lot. I also appreciated his first round entrance, where the man everyone assumed was the performer dropped off a small suitcase, left the stage, then out popped young Ponnie from the bag like Japanese porn. In between rounds he ate a pork chop, and while staring at his every single rib I could make out the shape of his dinner poking through his stomach. It was the shape of Rhode Island, geographically the smallest state in the union.
SMART OLD BROAD (Maureen O’Neill), the first competitor in my infinite years of professional viewership to pull off Hendrix’s Woodstock National Anthem, shared a very special moment with the crowd last night. She deserved every bit of the 6.0 and 5.8 lavishly showered upon her by cebrity judges JEFF DAVIS (“Whose Line is it Anyway”) and BLAINE CAPATCH (Comedians of Comedy). Afterward, Davis blew some coke off her tits.
Biggest “ouch my balls” of the evening for me was the 5.0 Justice Capatch threw THE CAPLICKSTER (Justin Caplicki). The judge reasoned that Caplickster’s uber Americana would not bode well in Finland. And although he be right, I would argue that Caplickster’s triple-XL US flag waving overhead and stuffed eagle on his arm was a) likely only his American act, and b) fuck it, if you’re not gonna win in Finland you might as well lose fucking BIG.
I agree with last night’s decision to send SHRED BOY R.D. (Greg Pittelli) to Chicago to represent the City of Angels, his home town. His chops were TIGHT, and his trademark death leap, wherein he jumps backward as far as humanly possible, lands hard on his back, then dies until Bjorn comes onstage and revives him, hit the mark. Last night, he death leapt from the VIP area back onto the very high stage. A stellar performance from a generous man who brought Halloween candy for everyone.
We’ll be posting videos as soon as real internet kicks in, in the meantime search YouTube for the1truedan (Dan Adams) — and while you’re at it “check out” how he almost “checked out” right after his performance from last night.
In case anyone was worried about the catastrophic carmageddon that was going to destroy all of Southern California, etc. etc., worry no more. Our leadership just spoke with Caltrans chief Cindy McKim who reiderated her statement from the official press release. “We expect light to moderate traffic” on most alternate routes between LA and San Diego for the entire weekend. As far as all the mayhem in the papers? “That’s just the news being the news.”
So we decided to throw a boat party to celebrate. Come join us, there’s a jetpack here.
Air guitar (San Bruno) Date: 2011-07-08, 11:58AM PDT Reply to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Free air guitar, great condition. Also looking for a trade for air drums if interested, Let me know.
From: Hot Lixx Hulahan To: email@example.com Sent: Mon, July 11, 2011 2:58:36 PM Subject: Air guitar (San Bruno)
Is this still available? Would you be able to ship it via air mail?
From: jocelyn m [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] Sent: Monday, July 11, 2011 3:25 PM To: Hot Lixx Hulahan Subject: Re: Air guitar (San Bruno)
I’ve still got it. Shipping depends though, I don’t really want to ship out of states. But if it’s to Canada I might reconsider for a trade of like maple syrup, or bacon mmmm.
From: Hot Lixx Hulahan To: jocelyn m [mailto:email@example.com] Sent: Mon, July 11, 2011 3:42:38 PM Subject: RE: Air guitar (San Bruno)
Maybe you can just think it to me.
From: jocelyn m [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] Sent: Monday, July 11, 2011 3:48 PM To: Hot Lixx Subject: Re: Air guitar (San Bruno)
Think it to you? Let’s be serious here I said AIR guitar not imaginary guitar, Don’t be silly.
From: Hot Lixx Hulahan To: jocelyn m [mailto:email@example.com] Sent: Monday, July 11, 2011 4:17 PM Subject: RE: Air guitar (San Bruno)
Your commitment to the concept of air guitar is, like ginger ale, both bold and refreshing.
From: jocelyn m [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] Sent: Monday, July 11, 2011 4:38 PM To: Hot Lixx Hulahan Subject: Re: Air guitar (San Bruno)
Your comparison is like pizza, both cheesy and awesome
Oh and apparently these people called the Sf airforce also replied who are these people that actually compete in air guitar competitions, kid you not look em up on google. haha And no problem glad I could share a laugh!
From: Hot Lixx Hulahan To: jocelyn m [mailto:email@example.com] Sent: Tuesday, July 12, 2011 8:17 AM Subject: RE: Air guitar (San Bruno)
That is the stupidest thing I have ever heard of – what kind of person competes in an air guitar competition??
Seattle & Portland: It Takes More Than Soap to be this Good
Host Björn Türoque (Dr. Daniel Crane, Ph.D) and Seattle champ Lt. Facemelter (Jason Farnan) share a chuckle. All of tonight’s photos courtesy of Seattle’s finest blog fan, photographer, and mom, Janis Marie.
The Pacific Northwest is no longer the smelly, flannel-clad, somewhat amateurish “let’s race around stage like madmen while breaking every string on my air guitar” I remember from my youth. Rather, Seattle and Portland have become smelly, flannel-clad, totally professional air guitar communities. They have matured into consummate professionals who don’t need shampoo to prove they’re consummate professionals.
Everyone who still watches television knows that Airpocalypse – international superstars who call this region home – are as talented as America gets. Members Whalin’ Big Air (Mahlon Koopman), Air Guitar X (Jason L. Cheung), Tony Tapatio (Antonio Cervantes) and Chuck Mung (Garth Donald–ret.), can enter any venue in the country moments before panties fly and scrotal cages shatter. And they did just this when performing their halftime show extravaganza. But what about those for whom no legends have been written, no head cheese* consumed?
Whalin’ Big Air, from way up in the cheap seats
Ever-Irish Chicken Paddy (Patrick McLaughlin), for instance. He played a track that was so, um, unique, that while in fact being a Bouncing Souls song, he had us all fooled into thinking it was his own very undiscovered band. Yet the face painted Paddy was so secure in his trademark Skinny Chicken style, and had every impromptu twitch and seize so perfectly planned that his on-stage ecstasy became our own. Yet the brilliance of so many other performers placed him buried somewhere in the middle. For both nights Dick Lazerus had spunk, and Thrash Browns was golden, and who can forget Portland’s Erik Ittar’s (Erich Hacker’s) super imposed on-stage heart attack upon all our sweaty, face-melted cardiovasculars? Portland-local Ittar has over the last half-decade performed stages from San Francisco to New Zealand, honing his style into a well-polished and crowd-pleasing second-round-bound act.
I can even remember when veterans Whalin BigAir (Mahlon Koopman), Conrad Irons (Derek Beck), Stephen ColbAIR/Air Guitar X (Jason Cheung) were free-flying Attention Deficit Disorders racing from one end of the stage to the other like a freight train dragging another shorter, plumper freight train behind it. But now they’re polished: they stay within their character, they work the crowd just right, and they pack a handful of really important moves instead of two dozen sloppy ones. Again, consummate professionals.
Grin And Bear It (far left) and Stephen ColbAIR (far right) compare dick-do’s (when your belly sticks out farther than your dick do). Hot Lixx and Captain Nowhere serve as their meat/cubs.
Celebrity judge Angelica Allen, visiting scholar from UC Berkeley’s Peace and Conflict Studies department (for air guitar is about peace, friends; if you’re holding an air guitar, you can’t be holding a gun), whittled down Seattle to three men: a sadomasochist named Grin And Bear It (Ben Hamill), hometown hero Tony Tapatio (Antonio Cervantes), and San Diego’s undisputed local world heavyweight champion Lt. Facemelter (Jason Farnan). Dick Diesel made a strong bid for himself with his red and orange spandex unitard, but was dismissed by Ms. Allen for “reminding [her] of the condiment counter at Hot Dog on a Stick.” He finished last.
Ever seen a flying condiment smile so sweet?
The crowd was treated to Grin And Bear It’s nethers after a wardrobe malfunction, which is bound to happen when you steal clothing from Pulp Fiction’s Gimp, and were nearly treated to an air-off between Lt. Facemelter and Tony Tapatio. Despite the recent surge in local sustainability, transplant Lt. Facemelter had the strongest showing in Seattle and rightfully took the title. His outfit was a perfect 90’s blend of stretch pants, Reebok high tops, and sleeveless beaded things. His lieutenancy was obvious and his facemelting undeniable. Lt. Facemelter took Seattle, hands down, by two tenths of one point.
Celebrity judges (above) Sweet Smell of Success, Hot Lixx Hulahan, Zero Prospects, and Angelica Allen look on as Grin and Bear It (below) bears all.
Portland’s round two was packed with multiple Seattle second rounders, plus Erik Ittar and some Airpocalypse members who coincidentally played our (kick ass) half time show. Female competitor Um (Sheri Dietrich, so-named because last year when we asked for it she just said, “Ummm”) broke the second round glass ceiling but didn’t take the regional title. Instead, it was our old friend Tony Tapatio, who in fact lives in and swears by Portland, OR. This guy is almost too good looking for air guitar, and could easily be a lead man for a sexy Latin-flavored revival of the boy band era. He came out chewing gum, then stuck it down his pants. At one point in his performance he played his air guitar inside an air vagina, before delivering it into the world and fathering it until college. Backstage, he’s the sweetest young man you’ll ever meet, but on stage he’s a Ravishing Rick Rude for the new millennium.
After being crowned champion, Tapatio remembered his gum. He then dug down into his pants and popped it back into his mouth.
Tony Tapatio, pleased that his juicy fruit still has some flavor left.
Thanks again to Janis Marie for all of today’s photos.
*Head cheese is not actually cheese, but a jellied meat dish made from melting the head of a pig.
THUNDERGLAND’S (Matt Barats) lanky, discordant moves became an overnight youtube sensation last year when Fox News used his routine, performed to Electric Six’s “Gay Bar,” as a challenge to the It Gets Better Project. A newcomer and virtual unknown when he performed at the 2010 US Finals, this underdog surprised the nation when he was among the last glands standing in the second round. He’s a 32A, a perfect size 2, and without his trademark horizontally-striped sleeveless shirt he’d be virtually invisible. Today and forever after, this once unknown is henceforth a Champion.
Each handmade trading card celebrates like never before the pillars of US Air Guitar – those members of the competitive air guitar community who have lifted the sport out of the bedroom, onto the stage, and now into the basement beside water-damaged sets of Magic the Gathering and d20 dice.
These limited edition jpegs come in two sets: CHAMPIONS and LEGENDS, featuring rankings and expert analysis on everything from competitor agility to homoeroticity.
Props to old LT. FACEMELTER for his photoshop skills and card copy booyacasha, keeping USAG afloat while the rest of us haggle group rates and feces-cleaning waivers at the Chicago Hard Rock Hotel.
Doktor Frank, lead man for the seminal Bay Area punk band Mr. T. Experience and prolific man of words, recently wrote a short review of the air guitar competition he judged. Henceforth, a gem therein:
I wasn’t too popular as a judge. I got heckled a bit, and a group of fans who didn’t like some of my scores and commentary tagged me with the epithet Worst Judge Ever, and it stuck. I don’t mind too much, though, because, I mean, why would I, and second of all, heckling the judges seems to be part of the program. Even Bjorn Turoque got ice thrown at him, though I can’t remember what for. I was told afterwards by some air guitar fanatics at the bar across the street that I had been a lot nicer than Jello Biafra was a couple years back.
The whole thing was a lot of fun, and I had a great time. I’d totally do it again.