Scott Bradlee & Postmodern Jukebox
Proving that everything new can be old again, pianist Scott Bradlee has become a viral pop sensation after creating a series of clips for YouTube that finds him and his ad hoc group Postmodern Jukebox reworking 21st century pop hits in a variety of vintage styles-transforming Miley Cyrus' "We Can't Stop" into a '50s-style doo wop number, giving Macklemore's "Thrift Shop" a '20s jazz accent, crossing Daft Punk's "Get Lucky" with Irish folk music, and showing how Ke$ha's "Die Young" would work as a classic country tune. Long Island-born Scott Bradlee grew up with a taste for jazz and classic standards, and he rose to a successful career playing supper clubs and night spots in New York City. By his own admission, Bradlee regarded most pop and rock tunes as unrefined, but, as he himself put it, "As a relentless devil's advocate, I then found that by simply altering the context of such songs, I could find quite a bit of artistic merit inside of them." In 2009, Bradlee released a digital single, "Hello My Ragtime '80s," in which he grafted familiar lines from 20 pop hits of the '80s into a medley played in traditional ragtime style. Bradlee then began experimenting with live mashups; during his weekly appearances at Robert Restaurant in the Big Apple's Columbus Circle, he would perform numbers that interpolated elements from popular tunes both past and present, and recordings of these experiments were compiled into a digital album, Mashups by Candlelight.