I am in no way a music buff. I hear a song and think, “Oh, that’s nice,” and then file it away in the back of my mind in a box labeled, “Don’t turn the station when this comes on the radio” and then move on with my life. I had done this exact thing when I heard Gotye’s popular song, “Somebody That I Used to Know,” which has become one of the most digitally downloaded songs of all time, selling more than 10 million copies, topping charts and is on the radio all the time. So, for probably one of the previously mentioned reasons, I remembered this song, and somehow discovered Walk Off the Earth’s cover version.
And, I’m not going to lie, Walk Off the Earth’s version is so much better (sorry Gotye).
Watch the music video on YouTube. The band of five gathers around one guitar and plays it. There is no bass or drums. It’s just one guitar. The genius (or cheapness, depending on how you look at it) of this act has garnered 148 million views on YouTube.
This band has had no management and has built its fan base completely independently. The band uses social media networks such as YouTube and Facebook to promote itself. Only recently has it signed a contract with Columbia Records.
The indie band started in Burlington, Ont., in 2006. Since then, its has been noted for using unusual instruments such as the ukelele and the theremin.
“Somebody That I Used to Know” is the song that put the band in the spotlight, but it has performed dozens of other cover songs with some unusual spins, including “Party Rock Anthem” by LMFAO and “Payphone” by Maroon 5. The band has also written other songs, including “Summer Vibe,” and “Gang of Rhythm” from its album, “R.E.V.O.”
The group is currently on a world tour, which included a stop in Buffalo.
If you want to be in the know, take a look at and listen to Walk Off the Earth at www.youtube.com/user/walkofftheearth.
Alissa Roy is a senior at Springville-Griffith Institute.