Ben Folds does Merton. ChatRoulette, Phase 2.

Maybe there’s redeeming value in ChatRoulette after all.

A thus-far unidentified musician/performing artist calling himself Merton is the latest internet sensation — composing on the fly during improv performances for ChatRoulette flybys.

Now, Merton is being lionized in tribute videos on YouTube, and in an “Ode to Merton” during a live concert by Ben Folds.

MoxNews.Com reports:

From Mashable, which landed — via Skype — the first Merton interview:

[Merton] talks about everything from how people now recognize him on Chatroulette to his musical background.

Homeboy is adamant about remaining anonymous as of right now, but we can tell you that he used to serenade his girlfriends with improvisational tunes, and he’s not — we’re pretty sure — Ben Folds (or is he?).

Make sure to watch until the end, when he sings to me.

Here’s Mashable’s video:

Merton’s first YouTube performance, which reportedly racked up around 4 million views in just a few days, was pulled last week “due to terms of use violation”; it was restored after some changes were made, including the blurring of a number of faces. Here it is:

Merton’s second video posted over the weekend:

Finally, here’s a tribute video to Merton by Jonathan Mann, who’s been recording and posting a fresh music video every day (he’s on day 451):

“After seeing his interview on Mashable, I knew I had to make a tribute to him,” said Mann. “He’s really an awesome guy. A lot of what he said there resonated with me, especially the bit about knowing from the start that he didn’t want to be mean.

“Mean” (or sarcastic, ironic, sardonic, etc) is the default position of so many people on the internet; it’s nice to see someone who not only thinks that should change, but seems to be embodying that change himself. That’s what I aspire to in general, and with Song A Day specifically.”

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One response to “Ben Folds does Merton. ChatRoulette, Phase 2.

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