It's fine if people like watching chris bliss's routine. They should just understand that they are not seeing great juggling. They are seeing a performance that they enjoy for other reasons. Nobody should come away from his video thinking that they have seen a great juggler. Some people do, and that is why I am explaining this.
His routine isn't about demonstrating how good of a juggler he is, yet people think that he is because they don't know any better. If you understand that his juggling skill is very basic, and that you like his performance because of any other reason, then we agree. Although his choreography is also not the best of its kind and with three balls it's very easy to choreograph a routine with tricks as easy as the ones he's doing in his video. He also lacks grace, and it goes on too long in my opinion. But if you like it for any other reason, maybe you liked the song, then it's perfectly fine for anyone to get enjoyment out of it as long as they understand why they like it and know that his juggling skill is very very basic and the routine is not technically challenging.
It's fine if you don't care about those things, but you should still be aware of them. If you think he's a good juggler, you are wrong. I taped a 5 ball version because...well because my friend Penn asked me to. It is a parody and nothing more. A lot of jugglers have been getting emails from their friends telling them to watch the chris bliss video, thinking that we'll like it. It is upsetting to a lot of us that our friends would think that we would like chris bliss's routine. We know better. We see it for what it is and are not fooled by the music and the sloppy choreography. So now we direct our friends to this video to set them straight in case any more of them tell us how great he is.
Those of you who have liked my video and have emailed me your compliments, I'm glad you enjoyed the video and please feel free to continue to share it.
Thank you all for your comments. Here are the best of the positive and negative responses. I believe this collection embodies all the positive and negative emails I've received. The positive ones are of course always welcome as I do like to hear when I've motivated and inspired others.
As for those with negative comments, please understand that I have heard your side's hypocritical argument. It's listed below several times and I'll just say that I'm glad I could make a difference in your life. The reason why you felt the need to email me with your thoughts is essentially the same reason why I felt the need to make this video. So we're not so much different, except I don't email my unsolicited thoughts to anyone or use the phrase "sour grapes." Please read ALL of the following emails BEFORE attempting to contact me regarding this matter. And even after you read them, it's probably a waste of your time to send me any negative comments.View Negative Emails - View Positive Emails
Someone just sent me a link to your "Bliss Diss" video, and I have to tell you, I think you missed the point. Chris Bliss' performance was not about how impressive the juggling was. It was about originality and creativity. His was a performance piece that had emotional appeal. He came up with something that resonated with people beyond the cold technical prowess of the juggling itself. You're obviously a very good juggler, but there are ALOT of very good jugglers in the world. What you lack is an artistic soul. If you had one you would have come up with something beautiful on your own instead of having to prove you could imitate someone else's creation. Also, this video was edited. That in and of itself makes it unimpressive. Yeah, I get that this goes along with your "bad boy of juggling" schtick, but it seems to me that you should show a bit more respect for a fellow performer.
I also find it hypocritical that you would circulate a video like this while at the same time ranting about "stolen material" on your website.
Anyway, you probably could give a shit about my opinion but I thought I'd give it anyway.
I watched your clip and would like to see a higher res version. You've obviously dedicated yourself. Your text however sounds like jealousy and sour grapes. Something I've learned in 10 years of online communication is that the only real reputation you can change on the internet is your own. Anything you criticize about others reflects more on you than them.
I can understand being a serious juggler and being tired of people emailing you about the bliss clip, but your not doing yourself any favors "dissing bliss." It doesn't go so well with the stuff about stolen material and lame hack jugglers either. If you're serious about that stuff, why do a "parody?" Why not do your own routine, to different music that blows people away? Just point to that if someone tells you Bliss is a great juggler. You could say something like "Well, I know people like Chris' bit, but here's how I think it ought to be done...."
When you say 'His routine isn't about demonstrating how good of a juggler he is' it hits the bullseye, but not how you want. No, he's not trying to show how good a juggler he is, he's entertaining a crowd. That's not necessarily the same thing.
Do your thing, you're good at it. I'd say you shouldn't try to be a critic, you probably don't even want to be one of those.
Just my opinions, I hope it makes sense.
I would like to see your clip in better resolution, is the lighting any better? It's a bit dark sometimes.
I AM A NINJA, as well as an amatuer juggler. My love for juggling came through one thing, the famous juggling finale of Chris Bliss. Chris Bliss takes something that if often used in the circus and transformed into what i would call beautiful art. He does this through passion. It has also been brought to my attention that you find Chris' juggling act is something that can be made fun of, regardless of its beauty. I do not doubt your talent, for it is rather obvious due to your accomplishments, but seriously, he makes something beautiful. I feel that your recreation is simply technique and just about every trick in the book that is not on the stolen material list. Because honestly, anyone who would do something that someone else has already done, is simply a hack. All those bands that cover other bands? HACKS. Simply rediculous. But anyways, I find Chris Bliss to be an amazing juggler that has the one true aspect of juggling, which is he puts his heart and soul into those three balls. Yes, five is impressive, but I hope you do not think that you are out doing him by simply adding your two balls. Thank you.
You seem like a nice enough guy.
After seeing Chris's performance, I checked out yours in which you had negative things to say about his juggling. You felt the need to say those things, I feel the need to reply.
You are the better juggler.
Chris put together a better performance. Many of his moves made good use of syncopation with the music. People don't give a shit about whether they are 'pro' juggling moves or 'novice' ones.If it works with the music then it just works.
Your performance did not connect with the songs.
That being said, I can clearly see that you are the better juggler. Sometimes though, that's not the point.
Have a good life,
Obviously, you have no idea what you are talking about, Chris Bliss has been juggling to music since the mid 1970's.
Jugglers are always so quick to talk down about other jugglers, when all of you are old vaudville routines "recycled." Instead of a knife, you modernize with an axe or a chainsaw.
W.C. Fields was a better juggler than you, if you do not believe me, find the movie of him juggling cigar boxes.
A joke is in the delivery.
When is the last time any juggler "solo" opened for a MAJOR pop-star?
Keep juggling, Rex
I did a search of other jugglers and didn't find one page where I could see/view anybodies routine. Somehow I came across your ACT today through Goggle and viewed you TAKE on Chris Bliss. SHAME ON YOU! What a Jerk you're shown yourself to be. His lousy/so-so performance as you classify it, has probably done more for Juggling overall than anything you have done and can ever do from this point forward. It appears you are simply jealous that his video has been viewed by over 20 million people.
I never heard of you before as a person nor as a Juggler. GEE, and I'm only 66 years old and your personality came through loud and clear.....
Too bad you just didn't join in the fun part and try to take juggling to another level without DISSING Mr. Bliss. And leave well enough alone.
I did see your 5 ball juggling TAKE of Chris Bliss's routine. I was impressed with his performance far more than I was with your TAKE knowing where you were coming from. You did yourself poorly. It must be nice to be surrounded with a bunch of YES people to bolster YOUR ego?
Again, I say SHAME ON YOU. You've set Juggling back more than you will ever know.
Ron Rook Sr.
Chris Bliss's video makes me think of and feel again something I haven't felt for years. That great feeling of solidarity with other teenagers, all of us living in the privileged but controlled and controlling realm of the adults around us. We were in it but not of it; of it but not in it, and that was a great, great feeling. To be different from them. Superior. Younger, more alive, smarter, more with it. There was just so much more ahead of us, and there were no limts. We were not bound by their hideous traps or their boring, stupid trappings. The world was out there and it was going to be ours. And more to the point, mine. I couldn't stand most adults. They really were such idiots.
But you had to be there. You had to live it to know what it was like having two brothers of draft age who despised the Vietnam War and had scalding, bitter arguments with a really good dad who'd been a fighter pilot in WWII. A brother who quit first the University of Michigan and then Michigan State, and another who flunked out in his junior year at Central Michigan after living in a house with 5 other guys and lots of drugs and alcohol and deep loneliness, who pulled a 6 in the lottery while 1-A and staying with our parents in their Scottsdale townhouse. OH man, it was bad. Such arguments. I can still see my brother Bob standing on the stairs yelling "Someday people will say we were right, that we were the ones who were right" and my dad just looking at him with a sticken look on his face, and all of us standing there frozen, and I wonder now if they were trying, as I was, to project their minds into a far-off future when people would be saying that, saying that the war had been a terrible mistake, and trying to imagine what that would be like and who we would be then in the midst of that thought.
You had to live it to know what it was like with the world unfolding in the most amazing ways on television every night. Bobby Kennedy. Lyndon Johnson. San Francisco. Watts and Detroit. Martin Luther King.The Age of Aquarius. Robert McNamara. Chicago and Jerry Rubin. The body count. The POWs, the MIAs.And the Beatles. To have their music as my young life's soundtrack (I'm a year older than Chris) was a gift from beyond.
Then go back before all of of those years. To the summers when kids played soft ball in the street until it was too dark to see and rode their bikes with cards in their spokes, and played with squirt guns and water balloons and sat around throwing a ball up in the air and catching it, over and over and over again. Just thinking.
Finally, add to all of this all the years of adulthood that have followed. No descriptions here. We have all been there, and we are all here now. With all the good there is, all the love that has revealed itself, still It isn't what we expected. Pride and vanity have not gone gently. The adults of my youth don't seem so idiotic. Well.... well never mind.
And perhaps you will begin to see why Chris's video means what it does to so many people. All of his history is in that video, living and breathing in every toss and catch, and a lot of other people's is, too.
You're an excellent juggler. I think Bliss is the better performer. Remember, those are two different skills.
Also, he was in front of a live audience. It makes a difference to someone's concentration.
Dear Mr Garfield,
I feel the need to respond to your video that you made that mimics Mr. Chris Bliss' FANTASTIC performance that he made to the Beatles songs.
His is so heart-centered and true and honest, and yours is, well, cynical and sour and (though technically better; you use 5 balls and he only uses 3), but yours shouts out "nannee nannee boo boo", while his comes directly from the heart.
I think this is why you'll NEVER be a real contender for any kind of a good thing; Mr. Bliss comes from the heart, whereas YOU come from spite, smallness, and total scorn. His performance, while maybe not up to the sterile, technical level of yours, is, nevertheless, so much greater than you'll EVER be since it came directly from his HEART. Your's came from spite. AND yours was only a COPY of his; you didn't even do anything original in yours.
His uplifts me.
Yours drags me down.
Which is why HIS video has been viewed so many millions of times on the internet, and yours has not. It brings you UP. Yours brings me DOWN.
You may be *technically* better, but his HEART is so much bigger. And that's what real showmanship is about. Heart. Not technical skill, which anyone with enough time on their hands can learn. I only HOPE that you can learn, in this long, long lifetime of yours, that you need to have HEART in your act. Connect with your audience. Don't just dazzle them.
You're the best juggler to come along EVER. But you need to show us your HEART, kiddo.
I have to disagree with your Bliss assessment. You comments sound like a bunch of sour grapes to me. In your video, it is amazing that you use the same routine (with a few more balls and flourishes). He came up with the routine, you copied it with some changes and try to use that as proof of your superiority over Bliss. The fact you had to copy him proves that he has something you lack... originality. The movement he used and the ease in which it appeared to me (the casual observer with no juggling skills) made your routine appear clumsy.
The fact that you and other jugglers get upset over the Bliss is confusing. I would think that anything that helped the exposure of your profession and would get people actually excited about juggling would be a benefit to everyone in the profession. Instead, your article makes jugglers sound like a bunch of self-centered idiots who are jealous that someone you feel is inferior has brought so much joy to millions.
I still link to the bliss video to people who have not seen it and they all, to the person, enjoy it. I was not particularly impressed with your video, so I have yet to link to it.
My recommendation to you is instead of saying you are better and copying the work of someone you feel is inferior, create your own original routine and let people decide on their own what they enjoy. I promise you will be happier and more successful.
Hello Jason, Although I am impressed with your taking this opportunity to gain notoriety, I don�t understand why you would need to diss Chris Bliss in the process. You are clearly the better juggler but he is clearly the better performer. Stating you are the better juggler would have done the trick. I�m sure you would have gotten millions of hits on that alone. Why slam someone for no reason?
As a performer myself, I have learned that HOW you perform is more important that WHAT you perform most times. Chris Bliss hit the right notes at the right times with the right rhythm and most of all, emotion. Too much technical takes away from the emotion. You just juggled to the music. From an audience point of view, it was more moving to watch Chris Bliss.
And I have also learned that life is a boomerang. If you want to send out negative energy, be ready for it to smack you in the face on the way
I just watched some of your Bliss Diss video. Lighten up, man. The Chris Bliss video is just great entertainment. Your analysis of why it is not good just smacks of sour grapes. I loved your video as well, but it lacks the simplicity of the CB routine. It is like a lot of popular music � the simplicity is what people love. I am a music snob and hate trivial music but I do not knock it. Seems you are a "juggling" snob!
You took a very long time and used a whole lot of words to make it clear that you are apparently jealous of Chris Bliss, who, also apparently, must be a lot more popular than you are, and that's what annoys you the most. That's a shame. I'm sure you're very good, as well. Just evidently you don't appeal to the public as much as Chris seems to, and it's a hard pill for you to swallow, so it makes you behave like a 10 year old. Different people are attracted to different things -- movies, music, food, sports, climate, TV shows -- what have you. That's what makes the world go 'round. Everyone has a right to his/her own opinion without being knocked for their taste. Grow up.
As an amateur juggler, magician and an more experienced amateur musician, I can share some of your frustration over the Chris Bliss video. Of course the moves are really basic and the technique is fairly sloppy, but the bottom line is that people do like the video. You yourself realize that he's made it into a really emotional experience owing to a combination of the music he uses and the tricks he does. For non-jugglers it looks really, really difficult and impressive. I admit that I even enjoy watching it, but for more of the total experience rather than the quality of the juggling. Relating it to music, there are a lot of musicians with very basic technique, who are really not too great from a strictly musical point of view (Bob Dylan, perhaps? Van Morrison?) but who nevertheless move people greatly. In my view, that's OK. If Chris Bliss were trying to pass himself off as a world-class juggler it would be one thing, but I get the impression that he does the Beatles routine because audiences like it and he can get the $$$ for it. As you know, it's hard enough to get bucks for any sort of performing art, so I guess I really don't have a problem with him or his routine.
As for your responses to him, you and the cause of juggling might be better served by simply showing people how more proficient juggling looks, and not dissing him so much. I think most non-jugglers would just resent your diatribes and think it was "sour grapes" because so many people are watching the Bliss video.
For what it's worth, the Bliss video did help me find some far more enlightening and technically proficient websites and videos (this site and the WJF Fatboy Slim video for instance), and now that my business (bicycle shop) is slowing down for the winter, I may be able to improve my juggling technique, including buying some new and improved equipment!
Let me begin by stating that I know little to nothing about juggling. I also feel odd about writing this e-mail but heck, that's the price one pays for being online, right?
I do not understand why you went so far out of your way to insult Chris Bliss. You say he is not a good juggler? I beg to differ! "Good" is relative. Anyone who can properly throw around three balls, to a routine, to music, for that long, without dropping anything, is good. Whether he is the best or whether he is simply doing simple manoeuvres is of no importance.
Is Chris Bliss the best juggler in the world? Well, no. Obviously, most people are aware that there are folks who juggle with more than three balls. Or who juggle with other objects. Or who juggle while walking on a cable between two buildings. Whatever.
Chris Bliss' perforance is so amazing because of all the factors involved. The music, the juggling, the way he moves, his snappy dressing. His performance isn't one of advanced juggling. No one claimed it to be, did they? It was just an awesome performance.
It does, unfortunately, make you seem quite petty and jealous to have your "bliss diss" video on your webpage. Anything anyone can do, someone else can do better. Chris Bliss is not claiming to be the best. If someone sends you his video by e-mail and says "this guy is an amazing juggler!" then you beef should be with the guy who e-mailed it to you.
Allow me to illustrate my point. I love horses, and I've been riding since my childhood. In my selected discipline, I would be considered a very good rider. Now, if someone else comes along and does a lovely but basic performance on horseback, and I witness someone saying "well, that was an amazing show!", how silly would it be for me to march up to them and say "Oh YEAH, well I can it better, just watch! I'll ride a taller, faster horse, and I'll do the same routine a million times better, then I'll post the video on the internet!" Doesn't that seem childish?
If you want to come up with your own routine, be my guest! I loved watching Chris Bliss' video performance and I would not be aversed to watching other such performances.
But then, there is a reason that I've watched the Chris Bliss video several times, but I stopped your "Bliss Diss" video a few minutes in. There's a also a reason that I'd heard of Chris Bliss long before anyone pointed out your little video to me. Chris Bliss is just a better, more classic, more graceful performer, who came up with a great routine that he can perform. That's all. He's not the best juggler in the world, but man, can he ever impress an audience.
Frankly, I hope you grow up and take that video down. You are doing yourself a great disservice, which is a shame, because you are a very good juggler. Your petty, childish attitude is all that is stopping me from enjoying your video.
I stumbled across your bliss diss, and I'd love to see the high res copy of your video. I've been emailed that Chris Bliss video by a number of people. I know next to nothing about juggling, so I was initially impressed with the bliss performance, though I thought his expressions were a bit crazy. Your video puts it in quite a different perspective.
I don't know much about juggling, but watching a video of Bliss, and then watching "Bliss Diss" and reading your comments gave me some insights into what a truly talented juggler looks like. I saved your video, send it to my friends and play it anytime I need a smile. Thank you - - great job!
Holy smokes...I saw a Chris Bliss video and thought he was great.....then I saw yours and realized he was a hack. Wow! Gotta get more of your stuff.
Very cool. I agree that his routine was not hard, with 3 balls, I can do everything he did. My brother showed me his link and showed the rest of the family as if it was the 2nd coming of Christ. I quickly put them in their place, glad you did too. I can't wait to show him your video.
It's kind of like those idiots in popular urban hot-spots that hit a pickle bucket with 2 drum sticks, and hundreds of people throw money at them. They give a bad name to actual drummers
Wow, this is awesome, I was one of the uneducated impressed by the chris bliss video until i saw this.
Your videos are inspiring to this old guy with carpal tunnel from 35 years of computer consulting. So much so, I ordered the book, 4 balls (right, can barely do 1 :-) and DVD. No, I don't juggle, but I hope to someday - all because of you. I'd like to thank you for all you have done to make juggling and the WJF what it is today.
Well, I know little about juggling, but now I know a bit more. I thought the Bliss juggle was amazing... until I saw the Jason juggle. So please, yes, send the link to the high quality video? I need to forward it to everyone I forwarded Bliss to (blush). And thanks for the education.
Wow, I'm not a juggler but I thought the Bliss video was lacking something. Then when I read the article "bliss Diss" and saw your video, I realized that I was right. You have to be the best I've ever seen. I was truly impressed. If you have time, I would like to have the link for the video. Thanks.
I watched both videos from the Internet. Not being a juggler I found the Bliss act entertaining but your demonstration was, for a lack of better words, impressive. I first thought it had to be a CGI trick until I looked around some more and found your website. The video I saw of your performance was just damn impressive from my non-juggling view even in the low quality mode I was able to find.
My name is Bradley and I have to start by saying thank you for making this video. I have had a countless number of people tell me how amazing Chris Bliss is at juggling and now when they tell me that I say "check out Jason Garfield...he's a real juggler". That usually shuts them up. Your routine was incredible...I almost missed you kicking the ball into the pattern. Anyway, I would like to get the link to the high quality version.
Thanks for your insight, I totally agree. The Chris Bliss video is exactly what you say...a performance to entertain an audience. That may have been his goal and if so, IMHO, he did achieve it. Not ever having been exposed to expert jugglers, I, like I suppose most who have seen his routine, was amazed and thought he was a good juggler. Now I know better and thank you for showing us what talent and skill "real" jugglers such as yourself command. You have to agree though that his performance had a laudable effect to both entertain and expose the general populace to the juggling world. BTW, your parody is exquisite, capturing some of Chris's nuances and amplifying them to hilarity and your skill is awe inspiring. Thank you again and if you'd send me the HQ link, I'll enjoy it.
Your superb skill would never have come to my attention unless someone had sent me the Chris Bliss, and I had forwarded it to my daughter (a juggler of modest accomplishment), and she sent me the link to yours. Pretty much just like you said. So the ironies go.
I'd love a high-quality copy of your routine. Juggling's been a hobby of mine for some time now (though I'm not as active lately) and seeing a good routine like yours is great for inspiring me to get back into it!
Indeed, I hadn't heard of Chris Bliss before and, after watching about 30 seconds of his routine, I don't care if I ever hear of him again!
i'd love a high-res version of this video. what you said on your site was the exact same thing i said to myself the second one of my non-juggling friends showed me the video and was like "hey man, how nuts is that!!! have youe ever seen a guy juggle like that?!?". needless to say... i just linked him up to your site and watched his jaw drop.
You rock! Thanks for opening my eyes . please send me the high quality version .
Thanks for educating us on what good juggling looks like. I have to admit, I at first thought the Bliss video was good juggling, then I saw your video. I have watched both many times and now I really wonder what it was that I saw in the Bliss video in the first place.
I've had numerous people send me the Chris Bliss Video. Please send me the link to your Parady. I'd love to pass it on and show All these people what Real Juggling looks like !!
Thanks , Mark
Well I'm not used to sending opinions around by e-mail, but I make this one an exception. Just a few days ago, I came across your website and that of the WJF and I must say WOOWWW ! I have no background in juggling and know it (unfortunately) only from the very rare 'clown-type' appearances. Then (again very traditional) someone sent me the Bliss video (how many times have you heard that one ?) and indeed I thought "that is amazing juggling". When I wanted to show it to some friends, I looked it up over google and found the 'Bliss Diss'... Now that was a whole other story and from the small note "Juggler : Jason Garfield", well I found ya.
Like I said, I have no juggling background, it never appealed to me, but this last week, I have been looking over almost all the videos on your website and quite a lot on the WJF site and I'm hooked. This is indeed REAL juggling. On your profile I heard that to show the world real juggling is your mission in life and I quite understand. It IS true that without seeing it people think of certain 'stunts' as great juggling. And clearly it is NOT. What a concentration and physical demanding sport it is. And it is beautifull to look at too. Sometimes it just looks too easy, until you try to throw a single ball repeatetly at the same point...
It's true that I have picked up a few balls these last days and started to throw them around. I used the short 3-ball clip on your site which was very instructif. I have never read any books on learning to juggle and I now think that's a good idea. I just sent a request to the WJF to see how much it would cost to send the book and DVD to Europe. I release (with some regret) that I will never get to do the things I watched many times over this week. Years and years of practice for that. I do hope however to get to master some good technique to do a fluent 3 ball and maybe reach a 5 ball in the far future.
One thing that I was curious about is what topics you cover in your book and DVD. And does the DVD compliment the book or is it a stand-alone ? And by the way, I AM interested in the link to the high resolution video of the Bliss Diss. From now on I will send that one around !
Finally, I would like to congratulate you on your achievements, on the creation of the WJF and on the mission you are on.
With best regards,
Please send me the link. I'm getting sick of getting Bliss's video sent to me. Nice rebuttal. Thanks!
I have to confess that I liked the Chris Bliss video but after I saw yours I wasn't able to watch it again with the original amazement. It's true, ignorance is the fortune of many.
I just wanted to let you know that watching your bliss diss video (and then subsequently all the other videos on your site) inspired me to start learning how to juggle. I was hoping that I could get that link for the high quality version of the diss video. Thanks and take care!
I am a teacher presenting a leadership unit to my 9th graders. They are easily impressed and often find it hard to discern between talents. It doesn't take much for them to attract to someone who may not be all that. Thanks for helping my students understand that being impressed by big stages, lights and good music (Beatles) isn't always what it appears. I showed your comparisons of Chris Bliss and the fantastic jugglers in your videos as an object lesson on the fact that first impressions often need to be reevaluated. They were impressed. A clearer version of your video would be appreciated.
S St. Andre