Keyboard Cat is an Internet meme. It consists of a video from 1984 of a cat called “Fatso” wearing a blue shirt and “playing” an upbeat rhythm on an electronic keyboard. The video was posted to YouTube under the title “charlie schmidt’s cool cats” in June 2007. Schmidt later changed the title to “Charlie Schmidt’s Keyboard Cat (THE ORIGINAL)”.
Fatso (who died in 1987) was owned (and manipulated in the video) by Charlie Schmidt of Spokane, Washington, United States and the blue shirt still belonged to Schmidt’s cat Fatso Later, Brad O’Farrell obtained Schmidt’s permission to reuse the footage, appending it to the end of a blooper video to “play” that person offstage after the mistake or gaffe in a similar manner as getting the hook in the days of vaudeville. The appending of Schmidt’s video to other blooper and other viral videos became popular, with such videos usually accompanied with the title Play Him Off, Keyboard Cat or a variant. “Keyboard Cat” was ranked No. 2 on Current TV’s list of 50 Greatest Viral Videos.