Joe DeGeorge of Harry and the Potters Featured by PBS Nova

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Nov 21, 2009

Posted by SueTLC

Harry Potter meets Science meets Wizard Rock…of sort as PBS Nova has a new special online called “Secret Lives of Scientists” and features Joe DeGeorge of Harry and the Potters. Many of you might know that Joe is one half of the popular Wizarding rock group, but he is also a serious Physics student at Clark University, and on the site we can learn more about his passion for both science and music in a great series of videos with this funny, talented and very smart young man. Quotage from PBS:

“We were pretty excited when Joe DeGeorge came to our set. We’d met some other scientists who thought they were rock stars. But Joe really is
one. In his SLoS videos, Joe talks about some similarities between
rocking with his band, Harry and the Potters, and doing his science. In
one of the pieces that got left on the cutting room floor, he also
spoke about one of the differences:

“The sort of satisfaction I get out of music is that there’s almost
this instant gratification of making something”when you play a show,
people are there, and clapping for you, and excited for you. Whereas in
science, if I’m just at my lab, mixing some stuff up, maybe I make a
new compound”but nobody’s there, cheering for me. There aren’t a
hundred people standing outside my lab, going ˜Yeah! Do it again! One
more!’ I mean that would be great if that happened in science. But it’s
hard to imagine a giant laboratory on stage with some guy mixing stuff
together and not knowing what’s going to happen. Most of the time,
people would just be like, ˜Oh”that didn’t work¦.’”

For better and for worse, what Joe says is true. In one of his
videos, you can hear us clapping after he sings his impromptu
composition, “Dick Feynman.” But we didn’t clap at all when Joe was
telling us about growing crystals in the lab. Not even a little.

So if science is short on rock-star adulation, what’s in it for Joe?

“I get a great satisfaction in knowing that we as a species are
looking for new things and exploring the universe we live in, to see
what’s really out there, and trying to understand how it works, and
where it’s going”and where it came from. It’s almost like it fulfills,
that sort of religious nature people have, the need to explain the
universe”that’s what science does for me. So, being able to explore the
unexplored is”I imagine I get the same feeling that an ancient shaman
would, working with magical materials. When I do science, I’m trying to
do something no one’s ever done before.”

Clap. Clap. Clap. Clap.

Dumbledore would be proud.

Hear hear! Thanks for the link Daniel!





27 Responses to Joe DeGeorge of Harry and the Potters Featured by PBS Nova

Avatar ImageMoose_Starr says: Wow, this is such a great article. This interview is awesome and, the comments about Joe DeGeorge are just amazing. Avatar Imagesimos says: cool!Avatar ImageKC Nox says: what a great article!Avatar Imagerealspace says: There are those of us who do applaud the seemingly solitary work of scientists. I recently heard from a college friend who said that she works for a company that is one of the only suppliers of Perchloric Acid (an extermely powerful acid used in industry) in the world. That was an awesomely geeky place to work I thought and I applauded her pride in working there. I never knew the science side of Joe DeGeorge...it makes him all the cooler to me!Avatar ImageGiant Squid says: great article!!Avatar ImageHermione Elizabeth says: I applaud you Joe and Dumbledore certainly does too! Great article!Avatar ImageWON_TWO says: Interesting stuff!Avatar ImageNoble Birth Descending says: This is brilliant! Maybe he will be the guy to make apparition a reality!Avatar Imagegingersnap188 says: Wow. This is great! SQUEE!!!!!!!!!!Avatar Imagecheeserpleaser says: This is such a wonderful and inspirational article. He sets such an example for all of us.Avatar Imagewandmastercalum says: Awesome!!!Avatar Imageccking says: awesome article!Avatar Imagekyramp says: Loved the article!!!Avatar Imagealicia00 says: awesome Avatar ImageFigment says: Very cool!Avatar ImageLady of the Lake says: Nice. Avatar ImageBrosia23 says: Cool...wait, Nova is still on?Avatar ImageLittleLoony says: ha ha this is totally geniousAvatar ImageJane_Potter says: What a great article!!!Avatar ImageMidnightSun321 says: xDAvatar ImagePhlegm De La Coeur says: I like that, he has a technical (science) outlet and a creative (music) outlet. Nice balance! ....and in a way....Bill Nye the science guy is kind of a rock star...in that doesn't-actually-play-in-a-band-but-is-still-awesome-and-makes-science-fun kind of rock star.Avatar Imagenox avis says: GO harry and the potters!!!!!:)Avatar Imagewing says: hahahahaAvatar Imagewing says: hahahahaAvatar Imagewing says: hahahahaAvatar Imagewing says: hahahahaAvatar Imagewing says: hahahaha

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