O Canada!

My favorite band in the galaxy—as most readers know—is Walk Off The Earth, an alt-rock band from Burlington, Ontario.

Below is a moving performance I just came across of WOTE singing “O Canada” at the World Hockey Finals last year. (It should not shock anyone that many Americans have been thinking fondly of Canada in recent weeks.)

This short clip captures the musical magic of the band. I often post WOTE's own videos to illustrate their madcap creativity, but this more solemn rendition of the Canadian anthem demonstrates the vocal mastery (understated but poignant) of their three lead singers—Sarah Blackwood, Ryan Marshall, and Gianni Luminati. They do their country proud here.

I’ve written about Walk Off The Earth at least 20 times since they became an internet phenomenon a half decade ago and I've featured two of my favorite WOTE clips here and here which show off their innovative quirkiness. (Be warned: their vids are seriously addictive. And there are dozens of them.) My interview with the charismatic Sarah Blackwood—who is even more beautiful in person—is here.

I should also mention, as I’ve been saying for five years, that this group epitomizes many of the attributes that I look for in business teams and organizations, especially creativity and exuberance. They personify the notion of "serious play" (a concept I wrote about here, with an example of one business team that took play seriously.) It's been proven scientifically that playful fun stimulates creativity.

Walk Off The Earth has always taken their craft seriously, which is obvious if you watch their videos or catch their live shows. But there's also a sense of unbridled joy in everything they do. When I see them in clubs I watch band members dancing in the audience, guitars and ukuleles flying back and forth across the stage, and beach balls bouncing everywhere. It's crazy, wacky, and wonderful.

I often leave their performances wondering why this is so unusual.


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4 Comments

  1. Some companies get it about innovation and play ... most don't. The ones who do are mostly tech firms. They wind up with a more creative workforce. And they score high in employee engagement.

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