|Born||Jeffrey William Busby|
February 23, 1954
Arvida, Quebec, Canada
|Died||February 10, 2014 (age 59) |
Born on February 23, 1954 in Arvida, Quebec, Canada to Colin “Buzz” and Mary (Halasz) Busby, he borrowed a library book on stage magic at age seven and was astonished to discover "I could lie and cheat honestly." Busby contributed his first article to a magic publication in 1969 (??), a new technique that won the prize for "Best Card Trick of the Year." By age 17, his sleight-of-hand performances earned him a reputation as a "magician's magician," baffling well-known experts with his creations.
Busby attended and graduated from Oakland High School of Oakland, Calif. in 1972. He then attended Merritt College, Laney College and the University of California, Berkeley.
He formed his own company in 1974, initially selling antiquarian books. He wrote and published more than 500 articles, 50 plus books and monographs; receiving many prestigious awards for his work. One of magic's foremost historians, his writings are woven with history, giving the reader a full understanding of how the technique or theory is intertwined with the past.
Busby was a security consultant to numerous casinos in California and Nevada, teaching how to detect cheating methods. He also lectured on Counter Deception and the Detection of Deception at Navel Postgraduate School, Monterey, Calif. and in the Washington, D.C. area.
He married Victoria "Vicki" Grismer, , the daughter of Ray Grismer, on Oct. 15, 1988 in Guasti, Calif. They moved to the Silver Valley in 1991 from Oakland, Calif.
He owned and operated Jeff Busby Magic of Wallace -- an international mail order business for professional magicians all over the world.
The first black mark on Busby's career came from his abuse of his access to Lloyd Jones magic library in the 1970s. His career deteriorated when he was able to deliver only 8 of the 15 promised installments of the The Braue Notebooks (re-edited versions of portions of Fred Braue's notebooks), which had been published without the knowledge of Braue's descendents. No money was ever refunded.
While he was originally located in the Bay area of California, and partners with Matt Corin (who fled the United States while awaiting trial on a drug charge, and who later died in a car accident) he moved to Wallace, Idaho, where irate customers would find it difficult to locate him. He had been blind in one eye for many years, thus the "sparkle" in the eye of his caricature done by Don Albrecht has a hidden meaning. In recent years he has listed his supposed ailments in a series of paranoiac and bizarre ranting e-mails in which he claims to have had a stroke and now be confined to a wheelchair. He claims that a sinister cabal of other magic publishers and dealers conspired to ruin his business, something he actually managed quite capably on his own.
At his home in Wallace, Idaho, Busby, passed away Feb. 10, 2014 at the age of 59. He was survived by his wife Vicki of ; his parents Colin “Buzz” and Mary Busby of Oakland, Calif.; his brothers and sister Colin Busby and (Melody Tannam) of San Leandro, Calif., Margaret Lianne (Rick) Murray of Missassauga, Ontario, Canada and Stuart (Patricia) Busby of Rancho Cordova, Calif.; He is also survived by several nieces and nephews and his beloved hedgehog Pokey.