The scenario is always the same. There is a party and everything seems to be going according to plan, but then the clock strikes around midnight. Something happens at parties, past a certain time, where people seem to let the alcohol completely take over their body as well as their personality. You think everyone is having a good time, until you look over in the corner and notice a guy, usually by himself, start to play the air guitar.
You think to yourself that he must have suffered something traumatic during his childhood years. The guy is typically thought of as scary, imbalanced, and sad. However, you might want to curb your judgment, and take another look at the guy in the corner. He could just be practicing to enter the next air guitar championship.
As strange as the concept may sound, air guitar is considered an art. There is actually a competition that is held every year with rules and regulations that are taken very seriously. The competition is held in a "final four" like bracket system where there are several tiers that you must win in order to get to the big prize.
First, you must win the regional competition. Regionals will win you a free trip, with airfare and lodging included, and they will allow you to continue on to the US finals where there is a massive competition between all regional finalists. Your next challenge is to win the US finals; from there you will again receive a free trip to the World Championship, which is held in Oulu, Finland. Unfortunately, this is where the party ends because, other than fame and glory, you don't seem to receive any sort of monetary prize.
The rules are straightforward and self-explanatory. Each performer will play a song that they have chosen, and hopefully practiced, for sixty seconds. Then there is the compulsory round, which is where the judges pick a song for you, and you have to play their song for sixty seconds. The tricky part about the compulsory round is that the sixty seconds of the song can start from anywhere within the song.
Therefore, you could be stuck playing the end of a song that you don't even know. The rules say that you must play an invisible instrument, and that instrument must be a guitar (drums are not allowed). Also, air roadies are allowed but they have to clear the stage before the performance can begin.
There is a rule that prohibits back up bands, so if you were thinking of bringing your friends along for the ride, make sure that they stay in the audience and not on the stage. Performances are judged based on your technical ability, stage presence, and the "airness" of your performance.
Playing the air guitar can provide a fun outlet for the person who cannot play a real musical instrument. Whether people look at you like you're crazy or just creative, it can be a silly way to just have some fun.
The Air Guitar World Championship might be taking things a little too far, but there is always somebody willing to compete to be the best at something. Growing up often takes the imagination out of us and stifles our creative energies. Mastering the air guitar can help to bring that imagination back.
About the Author
Mike Selvon owns a number of niche portal. Please visit our guitar portal for more great tips on air guitar world championship.