Hearing Oscar Peterson moved Charles Cornell to learn piano, but his own original compositions set to viral videos have now brought him Internet fame.
Based in Denver, Colo., Cornell, a professional musician, has been posting his quirky videos—which feature him seated at a keyboard and the video he’s lampooning superimposed to his right—for the past few months. The videos come from different corners of the Internet, like an old Orson Welles wine commercial, a Terry Crews Old Spice commercial, and others. It all started with him setting select tweets from Donald Trump’s Twitter accounts to music.
Eventually he stumbled across a video that rapper Cardi B had posted to her Instagram account. He saw the comedic potential, made a recording, and then Cardi B shared it on her Twitter. He’s been producing similar videos ever since.
Before his viral fame Cornell had just independently released his album Tales, featuring his work as a musician, minus the comedy.
According to Cornell’s website, Oscar Peterson’s music was what set him on the jazz path. He had taken piano lessons starting as a child, but after hearing Peterson, which Cornell describes as “the most important factor in my musical trajectory,” he set out to find a new teacher. That involved a local PBS telethon auction, an assist from his grandmother, and eventually two lessons that led to a five-year stint with his instructor Lee Shaw.
“She taught me about improvisation, harmony and, most importantly, that music is a language,” says Cornell. Check out the full story on his website.
To watch Cornell’s videos, check out the compilation below, or click here for his YouTube channel.