Five Foot Shelf of Card Magic???

A place where beginners can participate, ask questions, and post their views. However, beginners typically ask a lot of questions about sources, tricks, books, and so on. In fact, all magicians are interested (or should be) in the provenance of tricks, ideas, and related matters. This department will service these needs.

Postby Tabman » 07/11/04 04:12 PM

a question to card men and book men???

im wondering what the best card books to fill the five foot shelf are?? what books are essential including dvd, e-books, cd-rom??? this might end up being about 100 books at aveage about 3/4 inch per book. id like to put this library together here at the studio. there are a lot of great magic minds on here. thanks for your help.

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Postby Pete Biro » 07/11/04 06:36 PM

Ya wan'em stacked, standing or layin' down?
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Postby Tabman » 07/11/04 06:52 PM

Originally posted by Pete Biro:
Ya wan'em stacked, standing or layin' down?
good question! im 58 now. how many books can i safely enjoy. at least 50 i hope. anyway its 60 inches of books. i think the five foot shelf is something annemann came up with in the jinx.

what do you think of the elmsley books??? ive been working my way through vol 1 and have been surprised at how much good magic ive found. when i think of him i only think of the count. some of it seems a little dreamy though. ive never seen anyone show four as one that looked right. im going to start getting out and seeing some magic. maybe ill see one yet.
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Postby Pete Biro » 07/11/04 07:02 PM

I've got about 60 feet of books and want to KO down to 6 - maybe next week will start listing 'em fo' sale.
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Postby Tabman » 07/11/04 07:21 PM

id like to hear the list of the books you keep, and why if you ever get around to it!!!
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Postby Steve Vaught » 07/11/04 08:54 PM

I am surprised no one else except Mr. Biro has responded. You know...those "great magic minds" need a lot of sleep...they have such big brains!!
If we all be really quite, maybe one will wake up and talk to us...

...just kidding...

I will only list the obvious, and only because maybe you have not heard...
1)Royal Road to Card Magic
2)Giobbi Course
3)Expert Card Technique
4)Expert At The Card Table
Mainly your reference material. Then after that, it depends on MANY things.
Every magician will have different influences. For instance, I really like ONE, only ONE card trick out of the LePaul book. But, it's great!! I use it, it gets the response.
Eugene Burgers new book...ONE card trick...but, I love it. It's great!! It was open enough to fit my personality. But don't listen to me!!!! and don't listen to many of the comments here! Why? You have to find what intrigues you. After being in RRC for a while I asked someone to recommend a card book. They recommended Harry Lorayne's book "close-up card magic". Now I may get thrown out of the magic faternity for saying this, but...I really didn't enjoy the book. Sure, there was wonderful magic in the book, but nothing that I!!!! could use in the venue I was and still am working. Nothing really stuck with me. So my thought is buy the right reference material then just jump in and start buying the books people suggest or just something that looks cool...eventually you will find that ...ONE.

Steve V (the other one)
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Postby Guest » 07/11/04 08:59 PM

Here's some books minus Steve's excellent suggestions:
-The Classic Magic of Larry Jennings
-21st Century Card Magic
-Miracles with Cards
-The Complete Works of Derek Dingle
-Jennings 67
-Stars of Magic
-Vernon Inner Card Trilogy
-Vernon's Ultimate Secrets of Card Magic
-By Forces Unseen
-Card Fictions
-Paul Curry World's Beyond
-The Card classics of Ken Krenzel
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Postby Jeff Haas » 07/11/04 09:31 PM

You already got Jim Swain, so I'd add everything by Ortiz, Cummins, and Bannon.

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Postby BlueEyed Videot » 07/11/04 09:36 PM

Oh good grief, here we go again...add the following:

Hilliard's Greater Magic
Goldstein's Focus
Magician Nightly, the Magic of Eddie Fechter by Jerry Mentzer
The Magic of Matt Schulien by Phillip Reed Willmarth
Bannon's Impossibilia and Smoke and Mirrors
Close's Workers series and Closely Guarded Secrets
Kaufman's Cardmagic
Englund's Gaffed to the Hilt
ALL of Simon Aronson's books & pamphlets
The Card Magic of Edward G. Brown by Trevor Hall
Simon Says and Son of Simon Says by Simon Lovell
Buckley's Card Control
Revolutionary Card Technique by Ed Marlo
Close Up Card Magic by Harry Lorayne
Any by Racherbaumer
Any by Fulves (Chronicles, Pallbearer's, etc.)

argh...
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Postby Chris Aguilar » 07/11/04 09:59 PM

Why not just jump over the magic cafe and search for "Favorite books" "Desert island book", etc.

You'll find enough lists to last you a lifetime.
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Postby Pete Biro » 07/11/04 09:59 PM

KEEPERS :)

Any with Dai Vernon in the Title
Any with Slydini in the Title
Any with Ken Brooke in the Title
Any with Robert Harbin in the Title
Any with Billy McComb in the the Title
Any with Karrell Fox in the Title
Most written by Lewis Ganson
Tarbell Course
Greater Magic
Complete Mike Rogers
Workers series

You will notice I don't care that much for Expert Card Technique, Erdnase, etc. as I am more interested in performing magic not knuckle busting technical stuff.

PROBABLY KEEP :cool:

Bro. Hamman stuff
Anything on Linking Rings, cups and balls
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Postby CHRIS » 07/11/04 11:59 PM

Since you include ebooks and CDROMs in your 'five foot shelf', you could have thousands of books on this shelf. A CD can hold dozens if not hundreds of ebooks, a DVD about 10x more.

This of course would be counter the intention of the 'five foot shelf'. Alternatively you could place the complete 'five foot shelf' on one disc and have the 'five foot shelf' only take about 1/4" actual shelf space.

A great write up of the best books can be found in Jamy Ian Swiss's Millenium article in Genii.

Chris....
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Postby Guest » 07/12/04 01:24 AM

Why not just jump over the magic cafe and search for "Favorite books" "Desert island book", etc.

You'll find enough lists to last you a lifetime.
Hmm...

Jump to these sites...
Glean the information you want by listing the names of all the books you find...
Determine which titles appear the most often...
Toss the junk you doesn't like...
Presto...quite possibly the strongest, most respectable shelf of magic books ever as the list exists as a concensus(sp?)
Tons of work, yes, yes...
The DVD idea is hi-tech and neo. You could probably get darn near most of everything on them. Alas, even more work...scanning, burning to disc, more scanning, more burning...getting sleepy... :sleep: Sorry...computer drudgery bores me to tears... almost got carried away...in a strait jacket...
The Elmsley books are astounding. Dreamy...yes. But the concepts are there...given a bit of tweaking and a bit of context, there's enough in them to be a part of the five foot shelf.
If you made the shelf deep, you could get two rows of books on it...but again...even more work...
Have you thought of shelving them chronologicaly? (sp??)

Patrick
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Postby Tabman » 07/12/04 07:06 AM

id like to thank you all for your thoughtful comments to my question. i was out of the mainstream for ten years and ive missed a lot. now im getting back to my true loves of magic which is building magic tables and reading, watching and doing card magic. the discussion about larry jennings books a while back got me thinking about all this. any more comments, please!!! if not, this is a lot to go on and i appreciate it.
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Postby Dave Shepherd » 07/12/04 08:32 AM

Hi Tabman. Since you mention that you were out of the loop for ten years or so, I presume you've got a lot of the classic stuff people have mentioned.

I'll mostly be re-iterating what others have said here, but to my mind, the most important "new" publications in card magic in the past ten to fifteen years include the following:

The five Card College volumes by Roberto Giobbi (far and away the most significant new card publication)
The Workers books by Michael Close
The new CD ROM by M. Close, Closely Guarded Secrets
Carneycopia and The Book of Secrets, both by John Carney
Jennings '67 by Richard Kaufman (a book I am selfishly glad that many have overlooked)

There are also great reprints of Fechter, Al Baker, and Lorayne/Kaufman's Apocalypse.

My two cents...
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Postby Guest » 07/12/04 08:39 AM

Mr. Biro, with all due respect; if you truly believe that Erdnase and Expert Card Technique are merely "Knuckle busting technical stuff", I would humbly suggest that you read them again.

Noah Levine
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Postby Jim Maloney_dup1 » 07/12/04 09:09 AM

I should also point out that "knuckle busting technical stuff" and "entertaining magic" are not mutually exclusive categories.

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Postby Tabman » 07/12/04 09:25 AM

Dave Shepherd Said:

The five Card College volumes by Roberto Giobbi (far and away the most significant new card publication)
The new CD ROM by M. Close, Closely Guarded Secrets
Carneycopia and The Book of Secrets, both by John Carney
Jennings '67 by Richard Kaufman ...
I think I'll use these as a starting point. Could be these represent some of the best of the east, mid-west, and west coasts and i think richard kaufman in a way represents the south (hand over heart) since his digs are just south of the line. if you could choose just one of the carney books do you have an opinion on this????

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Postby Pete Biro » 07/12/04 09:45 AM

Taberooo... you've been out of the stream for 10 years.

Guess what?

There hasn't been a good book written in that span. NOthing but re-hashing of the real stuff.

(GR&D)
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Postby Guest » 07/12/04 11:19 AM

Nobody has mentioned The Commercial Magic of J.C. Wagner, my first serious magic book. And it's seriously commercial and usable.
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Postby Dave Shepherd » 07/12/04 11:39 AM

Originally posted by -=tabman:
if you could choose just one of the carney books do you have an opinion on this????
That's a tough one; they're both good. Carneycopia is written by Stephen Minch and has not only some good card stuff, but also some other material that's great.

However, I think Secrets, which John wrote himself, probably digs a bit deeper into theory and presentation, and has some very good card chapters. These are not just great new tricks, but also very helpful insights into magic with cards.

I would have to humbly and respectfully disagree with Mr. Biro, who asserts that nothing decent has been written in the past ten years. Card College is widely regarded a very important series, as important in its way as Expert Card Technique and Erdnase. Just the appendix to book 2, in which Mr. Giobbi presents a series of theoretical essays, makes Card College a groundbreaking publication.
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Postby Tabman » 07/12/04 12:36 PM

yes it must contain some dai vernon. he is to magic what miles davis is to music. i met him only once. it was at the magic castle around 1980. it was my first visit. he seemed interested in the female with me. he kept trying to talk her into pulling up her skirt and holding his hand but she did him one better and bent over and pulled down her top. he invited us to sit with him which we did for a while. there was a deck of cards on the table. i think he touched it once with a finger, lightly on top of the deck like miles davis picking up his horn and clearing the spit valve but never playing a note because he didnt have to.
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 07/12/04 12:44 PM

I was hoping to see the Hofzinser books on the list. It seems folks are happier doing card tricks than magic with cards.
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Postby mark » 07/12/04 02:09 PM

Jonathan, thank you so much for including the Hofzinser books, I have received so much enjoyment from his elegant effects. Also, -=Tabman, please don't turn your back on the Al Baker book. While it will take up more than one book's share on the five foot shelf, it is space well used. You are no doubt familiar with much of what is included, but to have all of his genius between two covers! It is a miniature version of your five foot shelf, and well worth the money.
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Postby Pete Biro » 07/12/04 02:20 PM

The new Hofzinser is ready (in German) and the translation is underway. Christian Stelzel told me Hermetic will publish the English version.

To me the food chain, or is it CARD CHAIN looks like this:

Hofzinser -> Vernon -> Diaconis -> Jennings

Then an Army of followers.

Your thoughts?
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Postby Guest » 07/12/04 02:24 PM

Hate to put a pin in that balloon Pete, but can you tell me what Diaconis has contributed? Unless part of the "food chain" includes swallowing things whole and never regurgitating...

Best, PSC
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Postby Guest » 07/12/04 02:29 PM

Tabman,

Give up about six inches of that bookshelf and buy all the Ron Bauer Private Studies. They are the best performance material to appear in the last decade, bar none...

Best, PSC
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Postby Jon Racherbaumer » 07/12/04 02:30 PM

I would single out Karl Fulves for promulgating the Hofzinser name with articles and tricksd in his magazines, the reprint of the Sharpe-Fischer book, and other pubs.
In Vernon's ULTIMATE CARD SECRETS were some allusions to Hofzinser (Jennings), but I give Fulves his due on this one...particularly the interest generated by the so-called "Lost" Hofzinser Card Problems.

Onward...
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Postby Ryan Matney » 07/12/04 04:42 PM

Surely Jennings has been more influential than Diaconis if only because LJ's work is widely available, read, and used. I couldn't tell you the first thing about Diaconis; his performing style or his contributions to magic.

Maybe he looms much larger to those with access to the castle?
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Postby Pete Biro » 07/12/04 05:18 PM

Persi contributed a lot of stuff one on one to people and published material under assumed names. That's when he was laying low playing cards. He maybe didn't GIVE a lot to a lot of people but he certainly influenced many, including yours truly.
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Postby Bob Kentner » 07/12/04 06:13 PM

We can always kill a few inches of shelf space with Hartman's Cardcraft, Aftercraft and Trickery Treats.
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Postby Bill McFadden » 07/12/04 07:00 PM

Seems we've been down this road, but make room for:

- More Ed Marlo (i.e. The Cardician, MINT Vol.1)
As Aaron Fisher & Lee Asher would say, "Real cardmen buy their Marlo by the pound."
- The Complete Walton
- The Collected Almanac, Kaufman ed.

2 of my own personal favorites:
- Secrets Draun From Underground, Kaufman
- Solomon's Mind, Burger
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Postby Jim Maloney_dup1 » 07/12/04 07:09 PM

Originally posted by Pete Biro:
Taberooo... you've been out of the stream for 10 years.

Guess what?

There hasn't been a good book written in that span. NOthing but re-hashing of the real stuff.

(GR&D)
Have ya seen Pit Hartling's "Card Fictions"? FANTASTIC new book, and not just a re-hash. Seven effects, and two essays -- some of the most well constructed magic out there.

-Jim
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Postby Bill McFadden » 07/12/04 07:23 PM

. . . and how the hell could I forget:

- Variations, Earl Nelson
- Versatile Card Magic, Frank Simon

??? :whack:
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Postby BlueEyed Videot » 07/12/04 08:05 PM

Well Tabster, with those last two, your five-foot shelf is now 23 feet four inches.

BTW, I certainly DO agree with Mr. Chosse, the Ron Bauer series are an exceptional value!
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Postby Tabman » 07/12/04 08:10 PM

holey smoley!!!!!yall are very kind to respond with so much information. i didnt realize that there was so much good, currently available card magic. im looking forward to beginning to add these books to my 5' bookshelf.

id like to add two books from my era:

frank garcia's red book, million dollar
and
frank garcia's green book, super subtle

i already have these two books both well worn from years on the road. i bought them in houston at a frank garcia lecture around 1972 or 73. he was probably the first real professional i had ever seen lecture and i thought he was about as smooth as dean martin. very impressive. a very good teacher.
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Postby Tabman » 07/12/04 08:20 PM

Richard Hart said:
Well Tabster, with those last two, your five-foot shelf is now 23 feet four inches.
haha!!! funny how that always happens!!!! and i was wondering how long it was getting and you've done the cypherin' for me. thanks!!!!!
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Postby Jim Maloney_dup1 » 07/13/04 04:55 AM

Wesley James's "Enchantments, Vol. 1" is a great new card book as well.

"Drawing Room Deceptions" by Guy Hollingworth is also a good book for this list.

-Jim
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Postby Lisa Cousins » 07/13/04 11:04 AM

I actually have the Harvard Classics "Five Foot Shelf of Books" which appeared in 1909 and 1910 to cater to the "intellectually ambitious" American family whose "opportunities of education had been scanty." The series gathers and presents all the significant thoughts and writings of humans, from ancient times to the then-present. It's fifty volumes, the last one being a guide and index to the rest of it.

You do get Plato and Shakespeare and Confucious and Ben Franklin, but alas, no card tricks.
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Postby Tabman » 07/13/04 11:54 AM

Lisa Cousins said:
I actually have the Harvard Classics "Five Foot Shelf of Books" which appeared in 1909 and 1910 .....
Is this the origin of the "Five Foot Shelf" then? this certainly predates ted annemann. could you look and see if in the preface its the original idea of harvard classics or some idea they maybe borrowed???

thanks.....

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