Where to Begin With Adam Neely (YouTube music theorist) by Marc Louis-Boyard for Slow Culture

WHERE TO BEGIN WITH… Adam Neely (YouTube music theorist)

Excellent news for the world of curiosity and musical enlightenment: Adam Neely and his videos just passed the 1M subscribers mark on YouTube. Numbers are numbers, and there’s another reason why Adam Neely is joining the Where to Begin With… club today.

Long story short, I tried to have fun at conservatories twice in my life. Always failed. If I humbly consider enjoying a decent level of musicianship, Adam Neely managed to transform the way I have lunch. Weird connection. Let me explain. 

My keyboard coexists with my plate, and my computer overheats at the sole idea of running Google Chrome and my favorite DAW app at the same time. Watching Adam Neely’s videos made me feel like discovering music again. This knowing that my initial discovery of jazz was one of the few real milestones of my life.

E m o t i o n. But not only.

Now comes the time to enjoy our guide to Adam Neely in 3 videos and 6 adjectives.

For those needing more context, this guide has no biographical motive, but you can check Adam’s Wikipedia page.

Read now, or…

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A guide to Adam Neely in 3 videos and 6 adjectives:

Knowledge and generosity - 'My Worst Trainwreck', April 2019

Rehashing one’s own failures and dwelling on the negative are one way to cope with the past. Inspiring and reassuring aspiring musicians with bits of this past is the path Adam Neely has chosen.

This video backtracks with humor and sincerity on a quadratonal catastrophe that happened at a wedding gig while the band played Elton John’s ‘Can You Feel The Love Tonight’.

‘My Worst Trainwreck’ shows that unfortunate events paired with musical miscommunications can end up in a valuable life lesson and don’t have to be remembered at face value. Mishaps are rites of passages proving that you’re actually making something.

Most importantly, mishaps don’t define you.

Fun and rigor - 'I played 23 Video Game Covers at the Bit Awards', February 2019

We’ve seen at multiple times on this blog (especially here and here) that the necessity of rigor doesn’t prevent artistic activities from being fun. ‘I played 23 Video Game Covers at the Bit Awards’, epitomizes that logic, often misunderstood or overlooked.

On this video, Adam Neely showcases his talent for inventive and technically sophisticated video editing. The principle is quite simple: . The editing must have been an elaborated nightmare at the service of the channel’s audience.

‘I played 23 Video Game Covers at the Bit Awards’ teaches that playing with friends and acquaintances doesn’t give you a free pass to mess around mindlessly. On the contrary, playing with friends always makes room for meaningful co-creation.

Friends and musicianship - 'Touring with a Prog Rock Big Band', February 2020

‘Touring with a Prog Rock Big Band’ introduced us to the wonderful NYChillharmonic led by the humble, happy-go-lucky and talented Sara McDonald. This video has a developed emotional side – intended or not – demonstrating the devotion one can have towards a project.

This video highlights the joys and inconveniences of touring life without filter. Showing at the same time the mundane and the extraordinary skillfully demystifies the life of a musician on tour. This honesty enriches the vision of aspiring musicians and, most importantly, the vision of their families and future sources of emotional support.

Make sure the synth and the vocals are in the same key.

– Adam Neely

Play the right notes, mate. (original video)

– Mary Spender

Useful links to get to know Adam Neely better

Written by  Marc Louis-Boyard for Slow Culture

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