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Difference between revisions of "Jon Racherbaumer"

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   Magic For Dummies (1999)
   Magic For Dummies (1999)
===External Links===
* [ Jon Racherbaumer's Website]

Revision as of 19:19, 4 October 2007


Jon Racherbaumer was born January 22, 1940, in Oak Park, Illinois. His early years were spent in Elmhurst, Illinois, a western suburb of Chicago. His interest in magic was sparked by seeing Dr. Harlan Tarbell, another resident of Elmhurst, perform in 1950. Tarbell’s daughter, Marian, was involved in community theater with Racherbaumer’s mother at the time. Soon thereafter, he received his first magic book, Tarbell Course in Magic –Volume 1, on his eleventh birthday. After discovering that Tarbell had donated his entire course to the local library, Racherbaumer studied each volume along with other magic books in the library.

Racherbaumer joined the Mazda Mystics Club (Juniors) in 1953, in Oak Park, Illinois. Meetings were held in the basement of the Mazda Magic Shop. Racherbaumer maintained his interest throughout his schooling and thereafter when he moved to New Orleans in 1963. From 1957 to 1965, Racherbaumer appears to have led a somewhat itinerant lifestyle attending four universities and working at a range of jobs before finally working for Eastern Airlines from 1965-1990 as an airlines business person. Racherbaumer is a member of various magical organizations, including the IBM.

Racherbaumer has primarily distinguished himself as an author in periodicals and of several well known texts. He worked as an Associate Editor at Richard Kaufman’s GENII magazine and currently writes "On the Slant," a monthly column. He was a columnist and contributing editor to Stan Allen’s MAGIC magazine for six years and has been the Parade Editor for the LINKING RING since 1991. He writes a regular column ("The Artful Ledger") in Antimony magazine, a quarterly. Additionally, he was an active columnist for Joe Steven’s Gemini Magic Network. He has contributed columns to M-U-M (“At The Table”) and scores of tricks and articles to various magazines: Genii, The New Tops, M-U-M, Linking Ring, The New Pentagram, Blue Print, Precursor, The Looking Glass, The Conjuror, and Apocalypse. He has published over 60 books and is a recipient of a Literary Fellowship from the Academy of Magical Arts and Sciences and the Milbourne Christopher Literary Award.

Racherbaumer’s mentors were Edward Marlo and Eddie Fields; with Racherbaumer being primarily associated with the former. Racherbaumer has defended Marlo against the widely-held accusations of non-crediting on a number of occasions and was aligned with controversy surrounding Marlo's undermining of the Zarrow concept in championing the so-called Shank shuffle. Racherbaumer claims also to have been influenced at different times by Channing Pollock, Cardini, Don Alan, Albert Goshman, Chan Canasta, Tony Slydini, Finn Jon, Lennert Green, Tommy Wonder and Juan Tamariz; however these influences are not usually evident in his published material. Racherbaumer has identified his literary influences in magic as Martin Gardner, John Northern Hilliard, Walter Gibson, Ted Annemann, Bruce Elliott, P. Howard Lyons, and Victor Farelli. These influences appear to be more inspirational in nature, as their stylistic idiosyncrasies are rarely apparent in Racherbaumer's own writing. Racherbaumer's own writing style is characterised by an ornate and colourful use of wordplay, and the frequent use of obscure, arcane and sometimes anachronistic terminology. The influence of Ed Marlo's machine like imperative to explore endless variations of theme and method is at times evident, but in Racherbaumer's case it is not accurate to say that he has the same messianic obsession with variation towards published credit but, rather, a possible fascination with variation as a creative process. Racherbaumer is thus focussed on the process itself, rather than the objective. Aligned to this, his writings also show an obvious (and perhaps overarching) fascination with the craft of writing itself as a creative and communicative process. Racherbaumer's 'creative process' has at times led to accusations that he has transgressed some of the conventions of magic publication, with Jamy Ian Swiss notably criticising his revisionist approach to hardcover reprints of periodicals he had published in the 70's and 80's. Regardless of the controversy, there is no question that Racherbaumer has been an enduring presence in magical publishing for the last three decades, with several valued and even influential works to his credit.



  1. The Artful Dodges of Eddie Fields (1968)
  2. On the Clock Effect (1971)
  3. The Universal Card (1972)
  4. Further Flight (1973)
  5. Hyper-Twist (1975)
  6. Kabbala Three (Lou Tannen)
    1. Suppressed edition (1975)
    2. Printed edition (June - 1976)
  7. Lecture Notes 1 (1976)
  8. The Mandarin Mystery Coin (1976)
  9. The Ascanio Spread (1976)
  10. Card-Coins (1977)
  11. Good Turns (1977)
  12. Arch Triumphs (1978)
  13. Kabbala - Volume 1 (October - 1980)
  14. Kabbala - Volume 2 (March - 1981) This includes the missing issues 9-10-11-12.
  15. The Lost Pages of Kabbala (May - 1981)
  16. Card Finesse (1982)
  17. Lecture Notes 2 - IBM Convention (1982)
  18. The Card Puzzle (1983)
  19. Marlo Without Tears (1983)
  20. Facsimile I
  21. At The Table (1984)
  22. Gaffed To The Hilt (1985)
    1. A collaboration with Don England and Richard Kaufman
  23. Card Fixes (1990)
  24. Lecture Notes 3 - European Lecture Tour (July - 1991)
  25. Synergistic Sandwiches (1991)
  26. Cavorting Ladies (1991)
  27. The Wild Card Kit - First Edition (1991) spiral-bound
  28. Cabbages & Kings (1991)
  29. Lecture Notes 4 - Another Roadside Attraction (1991)
  30. Racherbaumer Papers (September - 1991)
  31. Wild Card Kit (1992) - hard-bound edition
  32. Back To The Future Classic (1992)
  33. Vintage Marlo - Volume One (1992)
  34. Pastiche (1992)
  35. Full Tilt (1992)
  36. Big-Easy Card-Cunning (1992)
  37. Chronopoly (1992)
  38. Card Finesse II (1992) hard-bound
  39. Inside Tracks - Lecture 5 (1992)
  40. Psi-Clones (1992)
  41. Compleat K.M. Move (1992)
  42. Compleat Devilish Miracle (1992)
  43. Flashpoints (1992)
  44. Imitations, Intimations (1993)
  45. Pastiche II (1994)
  46. Recycle (1994)
  47. Magie Duvivier (1996)
  48. Arcade Dreams (1997)
  49. Greater Artful Dodges of Eddie Fields (1997)
  50. The Amazing Cigar (1998)
  51. The Legendary Hierophant (1998)
  52. The Legendary Kabbala (1998)
  53. In A Class by Himself: The Legacy of Don Alan (2000)
  54. No Pipe Dreams: Trade Secrets of Mike Rogers (2002 - unpublished)
  55. Prime Moves (2002)
  56. Counthesarus - Volume One (2005)
  57. Sankey Unleashed (2004)
  58. Art and Ardor at the Card Table (2004)
  59. Marlo on Erdnase (2007) (soon to be released)


THE HIEROPHANT (1969-1980)

 1 - September - 1969
 2 - Winter - 1969
 3 - March - 1970
 4 - June - 1970
 5-6 - (Fall/Spring 1970-71)
 7 - Resurrection Issue (1975)
 8 - The Last Hierophant (June-1980)


 Volume 1 (1-12) September 1971 - August 1972
 Volume 2 (1-8) September 1972 - April 1973 (four issues missing)

AVATAR (2 issues) 1973


  50 Xerox copies


1-12  (1976)
13-24 (1977)
  This leaflet was part of Son of Bat Jr. (Lloyd Jones)
  96 pages, complete


 1-7 (1991-93)


 Volume 1 (1-12) December 1990 - June 1992
 Number 13 (September-1992)
 Numbers 14-16 (1993)



THE LOOKING GLASS (with Richard Kaufman and Stephen Hobbs)



 (September - 1983)

OBITER DICTA: Dust-Motes in the Grid

 27 installments (available through Joe Steven’s Gemini Network)


 The Very Best of Kabbala (Richard Vollmer) 1981
 The Very Best of Hierophant (Richard Vollmer) 1985
   These are translated into French


 Hauntiques (Christian Chelman)
 Vis-a-Vis (Jack Avis)

Technical Editor (with Mark Levy):

 Magic For Dummies (1999)

External Links