Bradley Cooper displays his air guitar skills on 'The Tonight Show'

Bradley Cooper showed off his air guitar skills on 'The Tonight Show' Monday.

Bradley Cooper celebrated his 40th birthday Monday with a visit to "The Tonight Show." And since it's not enough just to come out and chat on Jimmy Fallon's nightly talent showcase, Cooper displayed his limited musical ability through the skill known as air guitar.

Now, air guitar may seem like a cop-out skill. Something to vamp through without any appreciable talent on display. But the way Cooper does it, with Neil Young's 1969 song "Down By the River," you know's he's spent more hours than the average listener working out the intricacies of Young's extended solo.

Why that song? Cooper couldn't say. But he did think it was odd that a boy would spend so much time learning the air guitar instead of just learning the actual guitar performance. What the heck, he's starring in Clint Eastwood's "American Sniper" and on Broadway in "The Elephant Man" now, so who are we to judge?

Luckily, Cooper didn't perform all nine minutes of the song which first appeared on Young's album "Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere." He gave them just the solo bit all while wearing a ridiculous curly wig. And while the whole thing started very small, with just some halfhearted strumming on the stage next to Fallon, Cooper soon displayed a performer's instincts.

This wasn't just any old sloppy air guitar performance. This was a full-on air guitar tour de force. He even worked the audience a bit, much to their seeming bafflement.

While Cooper will probably spend the year filming more movies (that's what an actor does), he might want to consider attending the Air Guitar World Championships this August to be held in Oulu, northern Finland.

There are many air guitarists in the world. But how many of them have been nominated twice for an Academy Award? Current Air Guitar World Champion, Japanese performer Nanami "Seven Seas" Nagura, it's your move.

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