Two Croatian guys have made the cello very cool, with a little help from YouTube and Michael Jackson.
When Luka Sulic, 27, and Stjepan Hauser, 28, got together four years ago and created a video for their version of Jackson’s Smooth Criminal, a phenomenon was born.
While the video only cost them $1000, it launched 2Cellos to the world and changed Sulic and Hauser’s lives.
“None of our videos are big budget. They’re done really cheaply. It’s funny how much they cost. For such a little investment they have such an impact,” Hauser told AAP in Sydney.
And this impact translates into millions of clicks on YouTube, from their first video of Smooth Criminal, which has now been viewed more than eight million times, to a recent clip of their version of AC/DC’s Thunderstruck which has over 31 million views.
“I think, to make a video that people will share and love, it doesn’t have to be a big budget video, it just has to have a cool idea and a great arrangement, and something that will make people share it and love it,” Sulic said.
“We’re lucky we’re from Croatia because you can get away with many things cheaper there,” he said.
The 2Cellos have been Down Under playing a series of concerts to packed out crowds who feed off their energetic performances, and nearly every single person sitting in the audience is there because of these videos.
“We don’t focus any more on making albums as much as we are on putting out singles and putting out cool videos. On the new album (Celloverse) we put out a music video for every single track on the album because that’s how we started,” Sulic said.
“YouTube is actually our radio because we are an instrumental act and we don’t get played on the radio like pop music.”
These two young men are bravely taking the cello to previously unknown places, tackling Metallica, U2 and even Aussie rock Gods, AC/DC in a way that sounds just as vital and energetic as the original.
Thinking outside the music box helps their career, and it’s what they advise any musician who wants to emulate their success to do.
“It’s important for young musicians that they don’t follow anyone’s path,” Sulic said.
“Everyone should try to find their own way and don’t follow the rules; rules are there to be broken. Only by breaking the rules can you make something exceptional in life,” he said.
It’s easy to wonder what could be next for these two. They’ve conquered YouTube, sold out large venues and have even appeared on TV shows such as Glee and The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
But they still have grand goals.
“We want to make a total revolution in the world of music, fill up stadiums and arenas with just two cellos, and we are already doing it so, well, we will just keep growing … every time it gets bigger,” Hauser said.
“It’s a miracle.”
*2Cellos play Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre on Wednesday January 14 and the Palais Theatre in Melbourne on Friday January 16. Celloverse is available via Sony Music Entertainment Australia.
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Sources: Daily Mail | All Things Michael