US Air Guitarists come from all walks of life. Lawyers, bartenders, engineers, and dudes that still sleep in the basement at Mom’s house. OK, most of them are the dudes that are still snoozin’ on mom’s couch. Some of them are young, some old, some parents, some not. But no matter their walk of like, they share a passion. A passion to entertain, to create and tell their own stories of adventure, and to be a part of a community that supports something bigger than themselves (in USAG’s case, world peace). They may wear spandex and wield unseen wind hammers, but when these geniuses of flight-propelled guitar mastery put their mind to it, they can create magic.
One such super-suited son of Air Guitar is Chris Harden, better known to the world as The Fro. Though he retired a few years ago, The Fro took away a valuable lesson that changed his life forever. “I have shared the stage with some of the most amazing Air Guitarists in history. I watched them build an emotional connection with the audience so powerful, that the audience would erupt in applause to the display of magic just given to them. They took that emotion home. They told their friends, and some of them who are bold enough, came back to reach for the stars themselves,” said The Fro. “Emotional connections are far reaching, and they create some of our strongest memories.” Just think back to your first kiss, first car accident, or first teacher that inspired you to learn more about a subject. The best Air Guitarists are the ones who can tell a story.
The Fro now has a 2 year old son, miniFro (uhm, well, Asher), who changed his life. “I began thinking about everything from the perspective of how everything will affect Asher,” said Chris. Last year Chris set out with his business partner, Jeremy Scheinberg, to create a toy to fill an early education gap for their children, who are 2, 2, and 5. They’re Engineers, and they realized there were no toys that promoted a love of learning science, engineering, or math at early ages. “Some people think it’s easy to Air Guitar; I think it’s the second hardest thing I’ve done, after trying to get miniFro to trade in his Youtube obsession with USAG for a fun app about the challenges of gravity,” said The Fro. He reminisces a moment about playing upside down while hanging from the rafters in Ashville one year.
Chris and Jeremy created TROBO, The Storytelling Robot, a huggable talking robot that reads digital storybooks about science and technology to kids age 2-5. “Education changed the entire direction of my life. I want to give that gift to my son and other children around the world,” said Chris. When not creating stories for TROBO, Jeremy and Chris regularly perform air guitar duets in the wide open privacy of their downtown CANVS office in Orlando. Passersby immediately understand that Air Guitar is a critical part of the creative process for stories. “It’s ok, we’re just working,” says Jeremy. The duo are striving to create something as bold as USAG’s quest for world peace; they are striving for a better STEM* education in America, starting with a foundation at the youngest ages possible.
Have you ever asked yourself, “How much kinetic energy is being burned when HottLixx and Bjorne leap 20ft off the stage?” “Does the lightning that Nordic Thunder calls contain more electricity than lightning that comes with natural rainstorms” or “If your face really did get melted by the Lieutenant, what does the chemistry behind that look like?” …yeah, they don’t either. But NOW you might ask those questions. You might be inspired to ask your friends, or talk with your own little Air Guitarists about how the world around them works.
If you like to inspire, whether it’s the crowd that’s watching you perform your heart out on stage or a little kiddo who you want to have all the best opportunities a good education can give them, create a great story and the inspiration will follow. Once the inspiration comes, the learning will be next.
TROBO, The Storytelling Robot is now available on KICKSTARTER. Check it out & spread the word. Special thank you and respect to US Air Guitar. The US Air Guitar Logo is copyrighted by the US Air Guitar organization and not sewn or printed on a TROBO. :]
*STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math