Dr. Ari Greenwald’s Pandemic Warning Goes Viral
Musicians add underlying music score to speech and the resulting YouTube video is becoming a viral sensation.
By External Source
The COVID-19 warning from the Toronto ER physician, which has garnered media coverage around the world, has now been transformed into an intoxicating educational music video by a local musician, hoping to send the message of the importance of self-isolation even further.
Toronto artist Terence Donnelly (keyboard player with R&B band Community Soul Project, and the Van Morrison tribute act Caravan) was struck by the urgency of Greenwald’s message, which was originally presented as a 10-minute YouTube video directed at the Orthodox Jewish community. As Donnelly listened to the good doctor’s warning based on what he was seeing “on the front lines” of the outbreak hitting our hospitals, he noted two things:
The message was truly universal, and it had an inherent cadence to it in the way the doctor spoke.
Firing up equipment in his home studio – including a synthesizer formerly owned by Oscar Peterson – Donnelly created a music bed inspired by and adapted from the rhythms and inflections of Greenwald’s speaking style. He then edited the core sections of the doctor’s speech down to a little over five minutes and put it over the track.
Donnelly sent a mix to guitarist Carl Harvey (Toots & The Maytals, Messenjah, Crack of Dawn) who had already independently seen Greenwald’s video, and later to drummer John Finkelstein and both added their parts to the project.
The last piece came from video creator Dennis Nieves – who had already been assembling images for the purpose of creating something about the COVID-19 crisis. When Harvey called and told him what he was looking for, Nieves said, “your video’s already halfway done.”
Donnelly is asking people everywhere to watch the video and share it with three friends or family members, with the hope that the message will travel as fast and as far as the virus itself.
On his YouTube page, he has also posted a link to support coronavirus research at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and hopes people will consider donating.