Jimmy Grippo

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Postby George Olson » 01/09/02 08:06 PM

I am looking for a copy of Jimmy Grippo's book written a number of years ago...
Anybody want to let go of one?
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Postby Pete Biro » 01/09/02 10:14 PM

Geno Munari may have some for sale...
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/09/02 10:34 PM

George, I think you would be extremely disappointed in the book. It contains none of the original material everyone was hoping for. Jon Racherbaumer is currently writing a book on that stuff for Geno Munari.
The old book contains other people's material, a lot of standard stuff. I'm really not sure what went one with it, and why it came out so poorly.
The book itself is attractively produced.
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Postby John Pezzullo » 01/10/02 02:13 AM

George,

Jeff Busby published a detailed review of this book back in the early 1980s. The overall gist of Busby's review supports Richard's comment about the book.

Let me know if you're interested and I'll have the review scanned and then forward it to you by e-mail.
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Postby Geno Munari » 01/10/02 06:06 AM

Hi George:

This was indeed a tough and also a wonderful experience for me. I met Jimmy in late 1969 or 1970. He was a friend of some of the owners at the Dunes Hotel where I was working. He would come into the Hotel and perform for the guys after his regular gig at Caesars Palace. Before that job he worked at the Desert Inn. In my opinion of magicians, there was NO one who could come close to Jimmy's close-up work. He was UNBELEIVABLE! No one like him.

Anyway I asked Jimmy in 1981 if he would be interested in doing a book. He said yes and
that I could assist him in writing it etc.

I was looking forward to this and he initially gave me a manuscript that he had previously put together. He suggested to me that he was going to give me more material, which he did, but he did not give me any of his signature pieces. In the mean time, we were typesetting etc. These were the days before computer typesetting and everything was done on a IBM Typesetter and was costly.

Before you knew it, I was at the point of no return and had to keep my word to Jimmy Grippo about putting the book out. He wanted this book, as I found out in due time, not to have his good material in it. For whatever reason? Maybe he felt that it would lead to an early retirement at Caesars, or that other magicians would be using his material while he was still an exclusive act at the hotel. Or maybe he just changed his mind about putting out the material.

In any event I financed the entire project. I was so impressed by Jimmy's real work and Jimmy kept suggesting that he would give me more material. I kept going. Alas, no real work.
Jimmy did not tell his wife and daughter about the project until the last possible minute, which caused more problems.

Currently Jon Racherbaumer is working on a book about Jimmy and I will finish a companion documentary/instructional video with actual footage of Jimmy Grippo performing with explanations of his work. If this work is not completed and available to magicians it will be a great loss to magic and magicians.

An interesting note: When Jimmy died, I was in Japan performing for a Japanese industrialist. I did not hear about his passing until I returned. His maid called me and I expressed my deep sorrow. I asked if I could have a bow tie to keep as a memory of Jimmy. She said that everything was taken to the Hadassah ( a Jewish type thrift store)the day before. I immediately went to the store and found three of Jimmy's jackets. I reached inside and found a 5 of Clubs with a Caesars Palace back. I said and looked to the heavens...Thank you God.

If I had not have found these jackets, many of his secrets would be lost forever.
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Postby Jon Racherbaumer » 01/10/02 10:41 AM

There was much more to Grippo's persona than his magical presentations. The book I'm writing will try to capture the whole person. His presentations were loaded with subtle bits of timing and misdirection. He also knew what was REALLY GOOD in terms of MEMORABLE magic. His management of spectators was the "best in the business."

The Grippo book will focus on these aspects more than the tricks.

Onward...
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Postby Philippe Noël » 01/10/02 11:47 AM

What were his signature pieces?
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Postby Guest » 01/10/02 01:29 PM

Here is another question in a book they said that somebody clocked the speed of his hands, how do you clock the speed of sombody's hands?

Noah Levine
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Postby Brad Jeffers » 01/10/02 03:06 PM

Geno, I look forward to the Grippo book and video. The last line of your post was, "If I had not found these jackets, many of his secrets would be lost forever." Could you elaborate on this? I'm not sure I get the connection. Thanks.
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Postby George Olson » 01/10/02 07:42 PM

Thanks Pete!

See ya at Stan's Jamboree

GO
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Postby George Olson » 01/10/02 07:50 PM

Your comments are appreciated Richard.

Mike Rogers made similar comments about the Daniel Cros book. I wanted to add it to my collection because I had the pleasure of watching him perform back in the 70's.

Same deal with Jimmy.

In my other life, I attended a conferance at Caesers Palace. It began the day after a Jerry Lewis telethon (as a side bar, a guy from Sony lost a couple of million at the Blackjack tables right next to us.) At a fantastic dinner I requested that they ask Jimmy to perform his unique unbelievable "stuff"

In addition to Jimmy were a few young ladies going around the tables and giving back rubs! Oh my God...
Back to Jimmy. He was ever so gracious and did his very best work for us (about 150) over the course of the evenig. It was around the time he had gotten mugged on his way home from work. He explained his confrontation.

That's a long way around the horn to say I want to add even the most meager offerings of a bit of his material to my collection.

Thanks Richard

GO
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Postby George Olson » 01/10/02 07:52 PM

John:

Thanks for the offer, but check my note to Richard.

Regards,

GO
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Postby George Olson » 01/10/02 07:56 PM

Geno:

What a great saga!

The God's were on your side with regard to the jackets. As I recall he was not a giant of a man, but if one of those is a "44 Fat"
would you sell it to the little old fat guy with stubby fingers that does some magic???? :rolleyes:

Can I send you the money now for the tape??

Regards,

GO
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Postby George Olson » 01/10/02 07:59 PM

Jon:

Two things, the money for the Premier Membership is winging it's way to you.

Am I first in line for the Jimmy book? If not I feel like a sled dog, the view is always the same if you ain't the lead dog!
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Postby George Olson » 01/10/02 08:02 PM

Philipe:

Can you think card index?

Mind blowing work!
GO
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Postby Pete Biro » 01/10/02 08:02 PM

I was working at Caesars Palace (I can lie, it wasn't magic, but a photo assignment for the Casino) and one morning, in the coffee shop, Grippo was sitting there, alone. I went over to say hello and he came over to my table (a client was with me) and proceeded to do almost an hour of incredible card magic.

Signature piece?

Heheheh... Geno will, hopefully, tip, based on the "coat" -- it was his ability to "get" almost with no moves, pauses, nuttin' honey... any named card out of his pocket.

Probably an index, but mainly 40 years of doing it.

This is what most magicians fail to understand. Someone like Grippo will have a KILLER item, a move, a trick, something... and the magician finds out what it is, and practices an hour or so and hasns't a clue.

They don't realize many of the greats have practiced, and or/done an item 10,000 times.

Probably were lousy at it for a couple of years.

My dad had a trick (acrobatic skater) that he practiced every day for a year before he showed it...
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Postby George Olson » 01/10/02 08:03 PM

Brad:

See my reply to Philipe!

GO
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Postby Geno Munari » 01/10/02 08:12 PM

Grippo's work was not so simple, and his gimmick(s) are perfect. No one has had the slightest clue on his index and it took me almost 5 years to figure it out. And when I did, I was still wrong. Close but wrong.

This effect is a mind blower and that is why it still is a secret. Any pocket index you have seen on the market is basically useless compared to Jimmy's.

The secrets I saved.......the index and its XXXXXXX, the envelope and its xxxxxxx are equivical to getting a new bike at Christmas.
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Postby Pete Biro » 01/10/02 09:24 PM

Geno. A Schwinn or a Harley?

See you next week!
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Postby George Olson » 01/11/02 04:54 PM

Now that we've run the course, does anyone have a copy??? :confused:

Thanks,

George
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Postby Guest » 06/29/02 08:14 AM

Just an update. In a private e-mail, Geno tells me that the Grippo book is nearing completion. And, that they will be making and selling Jimmy's style of card index timed to be released with the book. Many are anxiously awaiting this... right George?
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Postby Guest » 06/29/02 10:16 AM

When the Grippo Book first was announced, 12 of us who who used to meet in a magic shop in Rockville Centre, LI, ordered immediately.

A couple of weeks after they arrived - the owner returned all for refund - no problem.

I don't remember that ever happening again.

I'm looking forward to the new one - and video
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Postby Matthew Field » 06/30/02 07:54 AM

Geno Munari is one of the best and most upright people I've ever encountered in magic. The Grippo book and Card Index are on my "must have" list.

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