Forbes magazine isn’t usually known for sensationalizing (unless perhaps James Taylor is on the byline — ooh snarky elitist burn), but their recent gusher on MysteryGuitarMan, aka Joe Penna caught me by surprise. The writer of the piece, John Greathouse, a contributor, declares “I have seen the future of YouTube And It’s Name is Joe Penna. Haven’t heard of him? You will …” He then uses his opening line to predict that Joe Penna will one day win an Oscar … he doesn’t really make it clear what that Oscar is related to, as Joe wears many … let’s say … pairs of sunglasses. Joe’s an on-screen personality, a filmmaker, a musician, an actor and a writer, so I guess one could say he is a safe bet amongst YouTubers to win an Oscar in any category.
But that got me thinking — who are the YouTubers out there that have that sort of range and versatility? They can act, they can sing, they can do most anything. I left Joe off the list because we all already know about him. But because we need a few eggs to make an omelet, here is my list of the “5 YouTubers that Can Do It All.”
5. Chester See
Chester is the perfect person to start off this list because he has that combination that a lot of YouTubers have. He’s got a dynamite voice, plays the piano, writes his own songs and can do comedy and drama with the best of them. Only he seems to do it a little bit better than most. Also, for the ladies, he’s easy on the eyes. And that is the very definition of someone who can “do it all.”
4. Alex Day
I marvelled at Alex Day’s versatility before his latest album beat Justin Timberlake’s on the pop charts. Now I am, rightly, in awe of him. He sings, he does comedy, hosts a podcast, writes music, is in a band and is stylishly progressive in fashion. I get the vibe that anything he hasn’t done is only because there aren’t enough hours in the day.
3. DeStorm Power
DeStorm, with a few other YouTubers, was on a panel at a conference I recently attended. Now most of the audience didn’t know squat about YouTube and its potential, but when DeStorm’s video, in which he raps movie titles, played, the entire audience knew they had seen something special. And I had too, because while I knew he rapped and did music as well, I knew him primarily as a comedian. But he’s also a thoughtful writer. There are serious, legit long-term entertainer skills at play here. Yeah, I know people will be like “Ooh, racism” but I see Sammy Davis Jr. when I watch Destorm at play. And believe me, Sammy was the most versatile and talented member of the Rat Pack — and that includes Oscar-winner Frank Sinatra.