June 21, 2006

Don't you know you're gonna mock the monkey? Weird Al is a personal favorite of mine, and his version of "You're Beautiful" by James Blunt [W: auto-loading audio] was not approved for release by Blunt's label, so Al's letting you have it for free on his site [mp3]. This reminds me of when Coolio [W: auto-loading audio] got his panties in a wad over how Al treated his very profound "Gangsta's Paradise" with a parody of the Amish lifestyle (which is friggin' genius, if you ask me).

I love how these guys give Weird Al permission to remake their song, and then get all upset (after he goes through the trouble) when he makes a mockery out of it.

  • oh thank you, I'd never seen "Amish Paradise" that is really quite good! and seriously, what sort of treatment did they expect Weird Al to put on their songs????
  • He's supposed to be gentle and respect their artistic integrity. Or some such crap.
  • Amish Paradise was amazing. O'course I also thought that was an ok song when Coolio did it, and just peachy as a Stevie Wonder tune. Ahhhh, that song takes me back. I'm less enthusiastic about much of Weird Al's catalog -- the original tune in this case is more or less dreck.
  • I was a straight-up "Wierd Al" junkie in Jr. High. I can still sing along to nearly everything he ever wrote. I even know to put "Wierd Al" in quotes (he's got a thing about that). Unfortunately, he's gone kind of downhill lately. Or rather, it's just more of the same. Poodle Hat had a few good songs, but he really hasn't done anything truly great since Amish Paradise. And Yoda is still one of the greatest songs ever written.
  • Also, someone did a great WoW version of Amish Paradise.
  • Isn't that "Weird" Al, Weezel?
  • I don't think "Amish Paradise" is terribly good. The humor is kind of facile. I liked his early songs like "Eat It" and "Like a Surgeon", but his humor gets old VERY quickly.
  • I like Yoda a lot too. But some of my favorites are his own stuff. I'm blanking on names, but I think there's "Melanie" and that one about something telling him that you just don't love him any more. Deadly cobra in the underwear drawer.
  • Yeah, I thought Amish was just playing off crude stereotypes - I didn't like Eat it either. This latest is mildly funny, but the music is better than the lyrics, though the star trek reference early on is a nice geek shoutout. Everyone knows you need to have a good star trek uniform, not one of those cheap ones. But Yoda was brilliant - good song, with better lyrics than the original. And "This song is just six words long" taught me a lot about the recording industry.
  • *ahem* Hunny: it's "Weird Al," not "Wierd Al" or "Weird" Al.
  • POLKA POWER!
  • I got pwn3d, and therefore fully retract my statement.
  • *pats chimaera* Izzokay, Hunny.
  • I still have three of his albums on vinyl. Ladies, the line forms to the left.
  • Yeah, listening to Weird Al immediately transports me back to age 12. Or at least my most benign memories of being 12. I remember being so stoked to see UHF. Do pre-teens today listen to Weird Al?
  • I liked him a lot until I realized that his parodies were just about nonsense (usually food). Yoda was an exception which was funny and about something else. With the audience he commanded, he could have tried to do something clever. Heck, he could have even had a political hit. But he just never had anything to say. It is too bad because it is unusual for a musical humorist to have that much exposure.
  • Yes, a million times yes.
  • His polkas fucking rule, though.
  • O. M. F. G. middleclasstool you are now like my hero and shit for the vinyl. That is so awesome /head asplodes
  • After viewing the Amish Paradise video, I checked out the other Weird Al vids on YouTube. Have you seen The Saga Begins? It's his version of American Pie for Star Wars. I'm sort of impressed - he actually has a good voice.
  • ...Weezel, how did they get a night elf that far into Orgrimmar? *realizes her geek is showing, readjusts clothes*
  • One of the best things I did while in California was see "Weird Al" in concert in Santa Cruz. His live "Like a Surgeon" was great. Unfortunately the audience was either stoned (most likely) or asleep, and sat there like stunned mullets throughout. It was very odd.
  • jb, thanks for reminding me of Melanie! I loved that song. As for the other one you're thinking of, was it One More Minute? My all time favorite "Weird Al" song? Nature Trail to Hell (In 3D!) (sorry, it's a high school performance of the song - I couldn't find the original, video or not.) That song played a role in a wonderful little clusterfuck which was the intersection of military high school, debate team road trip, missing rides, getting rides, military base confusion, getting in trouble with sadistic officers, and dengue fever. Considering that I still love it despite everything that happened, favorite it is. I think I can still remember the lyrics, too.
  • "I even think it's cute the way/ you poison my coffee a little each" It's You don't love me any more. But they don't have a video of "Melanie" on youtube, sad.
  • P.S. Nothing says "I love you" like a spatula from Spatula City!
  • But they don't have a video of "Melanie" on youtube, sad. Don't they?
  • James Blunt is such a knob. He also took action against Eclectech and Doghorse for the parody they did which you can still see the animtion for with doghorse's lyrics, but no music.
  • Devo said in some interview they did that they were mad at Wierd Al because he made his parody better than anything they had ever done.
  • I love spatulas so much, I bought the company.
  • This is so weird (har!) -- I've been on an Al kick in the past week or so, since finding In 3D used cheap. Smells Like Nirvana is one my favorite vids from Al; it has some great sight-gags (I'm a sucker for dummies being tossed around). I must also sing Al's praises, since he gave me my first taste of They Might Be Giants. Alas, I don't find his recent stuff very engaging, mostly because I don't follow popular music anymore, so I don't get any of his parodies or polkas. Now, here's the real challenge: Many years ago, when they still had an ounce of artistic integrity, MTV turned over complete control (except for ads) of their station to Weird Al for many hours of ALTV. It was glorious -- I remember the rock 'n' roll olympics, featuring Prince in the 50-yard crawl, and a crude wind-up robot rendition of MTV's title sequence. Several years later, MTV repeated the experiment, but in a supremely lame and toned-down version, which basically amounted to Al showing some of his favorite videos. Now: Who's got a video of the first vintage ALTV? YouTube is useless -- I've checked. (All they have is this solar-powered blender ad.)
  • I'm always put-off by an artist who takes his/her art more seriously than anyone else does. It implies some sort of expectation to experience the "art" with reverence. But this Blunt guy? Whatever. His voice grates on my spinal column, and his lips are inflated. I just can't take him seriously.
  • UHF is still an underappreciated comedic masterpiece. And I'd love to have his early MTV specials ("ALtv") on dvd. I had "The Compleat Al" on VHS back in the day, with all his videos up to that point. My fave was his DEVO parody, Dare to Be Stupid. Just great. I think his best stuff isn't just mocking the songs he's parodying, but when he takes it as a jumping off point to some weird and completely-out-of-left-field idea and riffs on it for 3-5 mins, as in Amish Paradise. And his originals are usually great too--see the above One More Minute. And leave us not forget the wild wonder that was The Weird Al Show.
  • Forgot to mention--every time I hear that Blunt song, I keep thinking "This is a stalker song. This dude is totally going to hunt her down and duct tape her to a chair, then read inane poetry like this to her before the murder/suicide." Am I alone here?
  • The Blunt parody is great, mostly because that song gets on my last nerve. It's the great "make it stop! make it stop!" song of the year. "One More Minute" is an awesome song. The cutest boy in my high school sang that song as part of the senior show one year. Ah, memories. /Has to sing the lyrics to "Like a Surgeon" whenever the Madonna song comes on
  • Am I alone here? Nope. In fact, when I first heard the song (after I managed to get over the voice), I thought to myself, this dumb schmuck is in love with a married woman that he saw for only a moment. Loser. I suppose when one is lonely and desperate, anyone in the immediate vicinity is fair game.
  • Ah yes. The Weird Al contingent. *scans thread, takes names* MCT! Well! I should have known. *tsk* *tsk* I hope you know, that this will go down on your permanent record! "Another One Rides the Bus", "Smells Like Nirvana" and "Fat" to go . . and make it snappy, I think they're coming . .
  • I like the way that he takes songs and makes them new songs with different words about funny things like eating 'it' and needing new ducks.
  • Yep - hilarious.
  • ZOMG, this is totally flashing me back. I fondly remember ALTV. And I still get the "It's like spitting on a fish; it's like barking up a tree" line from "Dare to be Stupid" stuck on an endless loop in my head sometimes. Good times.
  • Well... sometimes you do need a new duck. One that won't try to bite. One that won't chew a hole in my socks. One that won't quack all night.
  • I'd rather clean all of the bathrooms in Grand Central Station With my tongue...
  • Thank you, nunia! I'd forgotton the sheer joy that was Beverly Hillbillies!
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  • Weird Al Jankovic - the American Otto