we're crowded, roll over
Last Thursday’s episode of The Office (Sex Ed) hilariously incorporated all of Michael Scott’s exes over the past 6 seasons into one convenient plot about herpes. However, one of my favorite moments from the episode was from the B story, which was when Andy took it upon himself to hold a sex education seminar for the rest of the employees in order to learn more about Erin and Gabe’s relationship. The Nard Dog bribed the staff with pizza, and as he arrived with it, he beautifully illustrated the concept of songspeak by altering the lyrics to Hot Blooded by Foreigner and singing:
Hot pizza, check it and see…
Got a whole buncha pepperoni!
Classic. These are my favorite moments of the show. The ones where the characters do dorky things that real people do all the time. Which is exactly what songspeak is.
Maybe Andy should replace Michael Scott when he leaves the show at the end of the season…
I left work promptly at 5pm and made it to Mohegan Sun in an hour and 40 minutes. Not too shabby. My friend arrived shortly thereafter and we went to the ticket window to get the tickets about a half hour before the start of the show. No offense to the first opener, Angel Taylor, but our first priority was getting dinner rather than catching the opening act. Luckily, we were able to get an immediate seat at Big Bubba’s BBQ and had a nice meal (I opted for the chicken and ribs combo, and she had meatloaf. Because two out of three ain’t bad.).
After dinner, we headed into the arena in the middle of Ben Kweller’s set. He was pretty darn good. I especially enjoyed Sawdust Man. After Ben Kweller, though, it was the moment of truth. Barenaked Ladies were going to take the stage and this was my first time seeing them without Steven Page.
And you know what? I didn’t miss him at all. They opened their set with Who Needs Sleep? (an always odd choice, in my opinion), and then broke into The Old Apartment. It was as it always is with them. They rocked the house. It wasn’t long before Ed Robertson was freestyle-rapping about playing at Mohegan Sun, and then him and the band started talking about how he’d gotten schooled at poker that day. It appears he played a $200 buy-in tournament and learned a couple lessons along the way. Lesson 1: Trip 9′s aren’t worth a damn (“I was outkicked!”), and lesson 2: Queens full of 10′s? Fold ‘em! (“He slowplayed me!”). All was right with the world. I’m not familiar with much of the new stuff, but Angel Taylor did come out to sing with Ed on one of the songs I DO know, Every Subway Car, and it sounded really good. They even played a song called Eraser from their kid’s CD Snack Time, which was great fun. The other band members (mainly Kevin Hearn) took over a lot of Steven Page’s vocals, and his absence was barely felt. In fact, the only time I really thought about him was when they played You Run Away, off their new All in Good Time album, which is clearly about him.
And as always, as I was hoping, they did their famous medley finale. It started with Kevin Hearn playing the piano and singing Magic by Pilot. This led into the band doing a song and dance routine that included Empire State of Mind by Jay Z, I Gotta Feeling by Black Eyed Peas (who were coincidentally playing the XL Center in Hartford the very same night), Baby by Justin Bieber, and California Gurls by Katy Perry, topped off by “Mohegan Sun, won’t you come” at the very end to the tune of Black Hole Sun by Soundgarden (which they’ve done at their previous Mohegan Sun shows). The crowd, of course, clamored for an encore, and BNL gladly obliged. They played 3 songs for their encore, and for the first, Ed Robertson played drums while Tyler Stewart stumbled across the stage belting out Alcohol (that song was made for him to perform), and they finished the night with Brian Wilson (the song, not the Beach Boys singer).
We left thoroughly satisfied with the show, and continued to do a little gambling on the penny slots. And even though it only took me an hour and twenty minutes to get home, it was still 2:15am. But who needs sleep, right?
Tags: 10s music, 70s music, 80s music, 90s music, alcohol, all in good time, angel taylor, baby, barenaked ladies, beach boys, ben kweller, big bubba's bbq, black eyed peas, black hole sun, bnl, brian wilson, california gurls, ed robertson, empire state of mind, eraser, every subway car, hartford, i gotta feeling, jay z, jim creegan, justin bieber, katy perry, kevin hearn, life in a nutshell, meat loaf, mohegan sun, pilot, poker, sawdust man, snack time, soundgarden, steven page, the old apartment, two out of three ain't bad, tyler stewart, who needs sleep, xl center, you run away
Thanks to Tosh.0 for bringing my attention to the Epic Beard Man viral video. It’s pretty disturbing, so I won’t embed it here, but you can view it at this link. Basically, a drunk black dude and a racist bearded white idiot exchange words on a transit bus in Oakland, CA, which then escalates into the white guy beating the tar out of the black guy, leaving blood all over the seats and the black guy asking for an ambulance, only he pronounces it “amberlamps”. Apparently this video has created quite a stir, the men involved in the fight have done interviews, and people have done a ton of video mash-ups using it. My favorite by far is this one, which incorporates the video into the video for Ram Jam’s Black Betty. It makes me laugh every time.
As disturbing as it is that this has become such a phenomenon (I mean, can you imagine being on the bus on the way home from work and witnessing something like this?), at least we’re getting some fine entertainment out of it.
Thanks to Bill for sending me this link earlier today. It seems that the soundtrack for Iron Man 2 will consist of solely AC/DC songs, and the soundtrack, available April 19, 2010, will be called AC/DC: Iron Man 2. One would think that AC/DC recorded a new track or two for the soundtrack, like Big Gun from Last Action Hero or Who Made Who for Maximum Overdrive, but nope, no new songs…just old stuff. So really, it’s kind of a “greatest hits” package of sorts. Which is fine, I’m sure the music in the movie will be rockin’, but would it have killed them to record a new song for the movie? (As I mentioned to Bill earlier, given their age, it just might). And didn’t Black Sabbath have a song titled Iron Man? Maybe it was in the first movie, who knows…I still haven’t gotten around to watching it yet. It appears as though Jon Favreau is a big AC/DC fan, and that was one of the factors that contributed to this whole scenario. Very reminiscent of how Stephen King wanted AC/DC exclusively for the soundtrack of Maximum Overdrive (based on his short story Trucks) because he’s a fan. Oh, Maximum Overdrive. Emilio Estevez. And remember when that other dude got clobbered by that truck that came to life? That was awesome. Anyway, enough reminiscing.
It looks like the soundtrack does a good job encompassing AC/DC’s whole career with some classic old Bon Scott songs right up to a song off their most recent CD Black Ice. You can see the track listing at the link above, but here it is anyway:
1. Shoot to Thrill
2. Rock ‘N’ Roll Damnation
3. Guns for Hire
4. Cold Hearted Man
5. Back in Black
7. If You Want Blood (You’ve Got It)
8. Evil Walks
10. Hell Ain’t a Bad Place to Be
11. Have a Drink on Me
12. The Razor’s Edge
13. Let There Be Rock
14. War Machine
15. Highway to Hell
And here’s the first video for Shoot to Thrill from the movie:
Keep your eyes on Brian Johnson. There’s something about a 62 year old grinding his hips that isn’t disturbing at all.
Tags: 00s music, 10s movies, 70s music, 80s music, 90s music, ac/dc, AC/DC: Iron Man 2, angus young, back in black, big gun, bill, black ice, black sabbath, bon scott, brian johnson, cold hearted man, emilio estevez, evil walks, greatest hits, guns for hire, have a drink on me, hell ain't a bad place to be, if you want blood (you've got it), iron man, iron man 2, jon favreau, last action hero, let there be rock, maximum overdrive, rock 'n' roll damnation, shoot to thrill, stephen king, t.n.t., that was awesome, the razor's edge, thunderstruck, trucks, who made who
The year was 1996, and it was our then-annual Lake George camping trip. I believe this trip took place not long after a group of us had gone to see Kingpin (the Farrelly Brothers movie starring Woody Harrelson, Randy Quaid, and Bill Murray). Disco Inferno by the Trammps was featured in the film, and must have remained in our friend Kevin’s head for quite some time afterward, because we would be singing it quite often. Then this songspeak moment occurred: A group of us were playing games at the campsite picnic table (probably Scattergories or some other such party game) while a citronella candle burned at the end of the table to keep the bugs away. Then, the unthinkable happened. One of us tossed a towel aside, and it landed in a most inopportune place. Smack dab on top of the candle. The towel, of course, caught fire, and we immediately threw it onto the ground and stomped it out. Kevin, meanwhile, started singing “Burn, baby, burn…” What we all expected him to sing next was, “It’s a towel inferno!”, but no. Instead, he sang, “It’s a disco towel!”. This made no sense, and due to the tensions being high and our near brush with death*, we all laughed more than we should have. It’s been over 13 years since that fateful day, but Matt and I still remember that songspeak quite fondly.
*And by “death”, I mean “charred towel”.
Tags: 70s music, 90s movies, bill murray, camping, campsite, citronella candle, disco, disco inferno, disco towel, farrelly brothers, kevin, kingpin, lake george, randy quaid, scattergories, the trammps, towel, towel inferno, woody harrelson
Back in high school, I worked part time at Stop and Shop. I worked there in the summers through college, as well. I’ve made a couple friends along the way as a result, and worked with quite a variety of people there over the years. Unfortunately, I don’t remember the name of the woman who is the origin of this story, but we’ll call her Barbara, because that might be right. But probably not. Anyway, we were talking about music or whatever, and for some reason we started talking about Lay Down Sally by Eric Clapton. Perhaps it was playing in the store at the time. Anyway, she told me how her young daughter thought the lyrics were “way down cellar”, and I thought this was funny, because it kind of sounds like that’s what he’s saying.
Given all the death and despair lately, I think it’s time to get back to songspeak basics. Which is why I’ve decided to tell y’all about an old songstory courtesy of our friend Kevin. You may remember his misheard No Doubt lyrics. Anyway, Kevin is a big classic rock fan, and him and I spent many a night listening to the Dazed and Confused soundtracks in his jeep as we drove around. Kevin also liked the Steve Miller Band, and had many alternate lyrics to various Steve Miller songs. One particular one that I remember was his alternate lyrics for Swingtown. The song starts, “Come on and dance, come on and dance, let’s make some romance…”, but whenever Kevin would hear it, without fail he would sing, “Take off your pants, take off your pants, let’s make some romance…”. Personally, I think Kevin’s lyrics are much more fitting than the original ones. And so should you.
Tags: 70s music, 90s movies, classic rock, come on and dance, dazed and confused, death and despair, kevin, let's make some romance, no doubt, steve miller, steve miller band, swingtown, take off your pants
There’s a new commercial for Taco Bell, featuring their new Pina Colada Fruitista Freeze, that showcases the very essence of songspeak. The commercial utilizes the 70′s classic Escape (The Pina Colada Song) by Rupert Holmes. The pure genius of this commercial is that it features regular people singing about their day to the tune of the song.
I think my favorite part is when the douchebag boss sings “ba ba bow ba ba bow”, fistbumps his employee, then blows it up.
After McDonald’s and Burger King’s latest efforts, the fast food commercial has become a whole new bag of potatoes. Congrats, Taco Bell, on stepping up your game and bringing the commercial songspeak to a whole new level.
There’s nothing I hate more than tennis. More specifically, watching tennis on TV. So imagine my dismay my sophomore year of college at WPI when my roommates were obsessed with watching Wimbledon. Or the U.S. Open. Or one of those queer tournaments where the guys in little white shorts slap a ball back and forth over a net.
They would take over the TV and watch it all day long. Rather than stab my eyes out with a fork, I decided to try to make the most of it. Lenny Kravitz had just released his cover of KISS‘ song Deuce, so it had been getting a lot of airplay back then. I know nothing of the rules of tennis, but I know every now and then something would happen with the score and the commentators would announce a deuce. So whenever that happened, I belted out my Lenny Kravitz impression, singing, “You know your man is workin’ hard…he’s worth a deuce!” I did this to be funny the first couple times, but then I did it mainly to annoy them into never wanting to watch tennis on TV with me in the room ever again. It didn’t work, as they would still watch it whenever there was a big event.
Tennis fuckin’ blows goats.
This past Friday night was a night 17 years in the making. Matt and I attended One Night of Queen at Springfield Symphony Hall in Springfield, Massachusetts. The ticket stub can be seen on the right. Would we play games with you?
You see, our relationship blossomed 17 years ago in high school, where we would talk about music on the bus ride home. Wayne’s World had just come out and repopularized Bohemian Rhapsody. This was my first real exposure to Queen, but Matt would tell me about all the quirky songs in their vast library of work, like Fat Bottomed Girls and Bicycle Race. This prompted me to get Classic Queen and Queen’s Greatest Hits on cassette. So when we found out that One Night of Queen was coming to Springfield, we realized that a bromantic evening of dinner and music must be had.
Before the show, we went to Theodore’s Booze Blues and BBQ. We started with a heaping plate of nachos, and we each got a ribs combo dinner. I opted for the popcorn shrimp, while Matt went with the brisket. Don’t we look thrilled?
After dinner, we arrived at Springfield Symphony Hall. The smokers were stinking up the front steps as we saw the huge banner for One Night Of Queen. We took our seats (after a quick trip to restroom to drain our bladders of the 3 or 4 soda refills we had at Theodore’s) and anxiously awaited the start of the show. We had been curious about what kind of crowd this show would attract, and it was surprisingly diverse. The audience was comprised of a few middle-aged folks dragging their kids to the show (and most of these kids couldn’t look less enthused to be there, and likely have no idea who Queen was), quite a few people our age, lots of other guys out for a bromantic evening themselves, and quite a few older folks who were probably our age when Queen was in their prime. Matt even spotted a celebrity in attendance; the guy from the local Bertera Chevrolet commercials. We found it odd that they were playing Queen songs over the speakers before Gary Mullen and The Works took the stage.
And speaking of Gary Mullen, he really channelled his inner Freddie Mercury. He must have really studied old Queen concert footage in preparing for this role. He leapt fabulously, pranced flamingly, slapped his ass, spit water, used the mic stand as a guitar, swung it like a golf club, drop-kicked his bottled water (Matt was slightly mad that he was drinking bottled water, as it didn’t exist in the 70′s and ruined the illusion of the era we were supposed to be in), supplied plenty of innuendo, and walked through the crowd, looking to have sex with anything that moved. At one point, he left the stage for an extended period of time while the band played. We assumed it was a costume change, but the only change we noticed when he came back on stage was that he had no shirt on.
The setlist was as follows:
And here, my best friends, is choppy cellphone video for ya… (with annotations!)…
We were disappointed that Radio Ga Ga wasn’t performed. This was especially shocking considering Gary Mullen’s affinity for having the crowd put their arms in the air and clap to the beat. Of course, there’s Matt’s disdain for the presence of bottled water. We also weren’t thrilled that Gary Mullen forced us to stand for most of the show as he maintained that the seats were “redundant” and that we should be off of our asses dancing. We were also convinced that Gary Mullen was putting on a fake British accent to stay true to his Freddie Mercury character, only to find out that he’s actually British! And one of my personal favorite moments was near the beginning of the show, when he said, “How are you doing Springfield?” *crowd cheers* “Where’s Homer Simpson?” Who doesn’t love an antiquated Simpsons joke? It’s like having your grandmother forward you an email about how Bill Gates is going to pay everyone a bunch of money for forwarding said email. In other words, topical.
All in all, we had a great time, and it was much better than we thought it would be. Gary Mullen and The Works have been doing this for a number of years and are currently on tour. If you’re a Queen fan, you would be stone cold crazy to miss this show.
Tags: 70s music, 80s music, 90s music, bbq, bertera chevrolet, bicycle race, bill gates, booze blues and bbq, bottled water, brisket, bromance, bromantic, classic queen, dave mustaine, david bowie, davie brockett, elvis presley, freddie mercury, gary mullen, homer simpson, i'm going slightly mad, innuendo, massachusetts, megadeth, nachos, northampton high school, one night of queen, play the game, popcorn shrimp, queen, queen's greatest hits, radio ga ga, rapper's delight, ribs, simpsons, springfield, stone cold crazy, sugar hill gang, symphony hall, the works, theodore's, wayne's world, you're my best friend