An ode to Weird Al
Alfred "Weird Al" Yankovic is known in particular for his humorous songs that make light of popular culture and that often parody specific songs by contemporary musical acts. Since his first-aired song parody in 1979, he has sold more than 12 million albums—more than any other comedy act in history, recorded more than 150 parody and original songs, and has performed more than 1,000 live shows.
Al's first accordion lesson, which sparked his career in music, was on October 22, 1966, a day before his seventh birthday. A door-to-door salesman traveling through Lynwood offered the Yankovic parents a choice of accordion or guitar lessons at a local music school. Yankovic claims the reason his parents chose accordion over guitar was "They figured there should be at least one more accordion-playing Yankovic in the world", referring to Frankie Yankovic, to whom he is no relation.
Yankovic began kindergarten a year earlier than most children, and he skipped the second grade. "My classmates seemed to think I was some kind of rocket scientist so I was labeled a nerd early on", he recalls. He claims to have been a straight-A student throughout high school, which earned him the honor of becoming valedictorian of his senior class and he was fairly active in his school's extracurricular programs.
Yankovic claims he has no intention of writing "serious music". In his reasoning, "There's enough people that do unfunny music. I'll leave the serious stuff to Paris Hilton and Kevin Federline."
Yankovic is the sole writer for all his songs, and for "legal and personal reasons" does not accept parody submissions or ideas from fans. There exists, however, one exception to this rule in the case of "Like a Surgeon". Madonna was reportedly talking with a friend and happened to wonder aloud when Yankovic was going to turn her "Like a Virgin" into "Like a Surgeon."
Yankovic and his band essentially play the original song with new lyrics. Instead of using instrumental versions of the original songs, Yankovic and his band transcribe the original song by ear and re-record the song for Yankovic's parody version.
While Yankovic's music generally does not parody the song or the artist of the original song, Yankovic's music videos will sometimes incorporate parodies of many elements of the original song's music video, or otherwise spoof the general style of the music. Most notably, the video for "Smells Like Nirvana" uses an extremely similar set to Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit", including using several of the same actors.
Under the "fair use" provision of U.S. copyright law, affirmed by the United States Supreme Court, one does not need permission to record a parody. However, as a personal rule, and as a means of maintaining good relationships within the music community, Yankovic has always requested permission from the original artist before recording his parodies.
The song "The Saga Begins" (a parody of Don McLean's "American Pie") accurately states the entire plot of The Phantom Menace, despite being written before the film's release. Yankovic got the plot details from rumor websites.
One of Yankovic's most controversial parodies was 1996's "Amish Paradise", based on "Gangsta's Paradise" by hip-hop artist Coolio, which, in turn, was based on "Pastime Paradise" by Stevie Wonder. Reportedly, Coolio's label gave Yankovic the impression that Coolio had granted permission to record the parody, but Coolio maintains that he never did.
Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page is a self-proclaimed Yankovic fan, but when Yankovic wished to create a polka medley of Led Zeppelin songs, Page refused. Yankovic was, however, allowed the very rare opportunity to re-record a sample of "Black Dog" for a segment of "Trapped in the Drive-Thru".
In 1989, Yankovic starred in a full-length feature film, co-written by himself and manager Jay Levey, and filmed in Tulsa, Oklahoma called UHF. The film has since become a cult classic, with out-of-print copies of the VHS version selling for up to $100 on eBay until the release of the DVD in 2002. UHF shows the creation of Yankovic's signature food—the Twinkie Wiener Sandwich. The snack consists of an overturned Twinkie split open as a makeshift bun, a hot dog, and Easy Cheese. Yankovic has stated that he has switched to using tofu hot dogs since becoming a vegetarian, but still enjoys the occasional Twinkie Wiener Sandwich.
Credits: All of the above text is from Wikipedia.org. All videos are hosted on YouTube.
N 44 AB.CDE W 088 FG.HIJ
- 1A pancreases are dancing in a circle while you hear woo woo woo woo.
- The young junkyard slave is just N years old.
- Celebrity Mud Wrestling is on at P:30pm. B = P - N
- C fingers are pointing at the smoking convict.
- Al's drive-thru order total is $K.LM. D = L
- There were E kids in Al's Glee Club.
- Al would rather get F00,000 papercuts on his face then spend one more minute with you.
- Tonight we're gonna party like it's 1G99
- The heart beats H times before it slips out of Dr. Al's hands.
- 7.I is the lowest score the ice skater receives.
- J girl scouts are selling cookies.
Each video will provide you with a clue to solving the puzzle. Cache is a small camoflaged tin with room for small items. BYOP.
Winter Friendliness Rating: Will get buried in the snow.
Congratulations ImDutch on the FTF!