From a Mind of Eternal Chaos

A place where I post whatever happens to strike my fancy

List #1: Top 10 favorite Weird Al parodies — April 4, 2016

List #1: Top 10 favorite Weird Al parodies

Now it’s time for something a bit different. (Insert your own Monty Python joke.) This time, rather than a straight article, we’re doing a list, which is exactly what it sounds like: I write a list of things (favorites, least favorites, noteworthy examples, etc.), and you read them…or ignore them, or whatever. In this case, in honor of me finally finishing my Weird Al binge and listening to all 14 of his albums for the first time, I have decided to make my first list on here about my favorite Weird Al songs. Well…close to that, anyway; specifically, this list is about my favorite parodies of his. In case you were not aware, he actually has quite a number of songs that do not parody any specific song, some of which are completely original and many of which are pastiches based on the music style of a particular other artist. Those we will save for another day, but for now, may I present to you…my top 10 favorite Weird Al song parodies.

10) “Fat”

Listen to the song here.

It’s catchy enough, and the lyrics are a lot more memorable than the original, though that might just be because I’m more familiar with the parody version (even after having siblings in dance performances that included one to this song). It’s also funny without being overly dark, creepy, or awkward.

9) “I Lost on Jeopardy”

Listen to the song here.

I think I actually did hear the original version of this song first, even if again, I don’t remember it as well. This song tells more of a story than the last one, and it’s just as catchy, with a nice beat and whatnot.

8) “White and Nerdy”

Listen to the song here.

Okay, so the music for this one isn’t nearly as good as the last two. One thing I’ve noticed about Weird Al (even if it doesn’t hold true all the time) is that he can make crappy songs a lot more tolerable, and since I don’t like rap, I doubt I’d like the original version of this. The lyrics are good, though; the song could be used an an anthem of sorts for celebrating nerdiness in its entirety, given how many different facets of it he covers in the song (computer programming, math, theater, tabletop gaming, general awkwardness…no doubt I’ve missed some).

7) “Amish Paradise”

Listen to the song here.

This is basically the same situation as the previous song. Listening to any song with “gangsta” in the title is roughly at the same tier in my scale of enjoyment as drinking my own urine, but the “Amish version” is decent enough. Between this and White and Nerdy, I’m not entirely sure which I like better, but I might give a slight edge to this for having better music.

6) “Inactive”

Listen to the song here.

Now here’s a song that was actually good in its original form turned into something that’s kind of disgusting and kind of hilarious at the same time. Okay, so he rhymes “show” with “control” and considers “inertia” to be a 4-syllable word, but come on, “This couch is part of me; I’m growing cobwebs on my knee”? Seriously now. It’s not as upbeat as some of the others on here, but it can get stuck in your head nevertheless (which I actually mentioned in one of my earliest blog posts on here).

5) “eBay”

Listen to the song here.

Here’s a song consisting of essentially little but a list, as a number of Al’s songs are. But it’s well-done, and it makes an interesting combo with the music. The thing about this one is that I actually know some of the original lyrics, having heard and liked the original song quite a bit before the parody because I got a Backstreet Boys cassette tape for Christmas once. (What? What?! I was 11 at the time, okay? And then they came up again when we were going through our old tapes and my sister, who likes One Direction, found this, upon which I had to explain to her about the Backstreet Boys being more or less a ’90s version of One Direction…but I digress.)

4) “Tacky”

Listen to the song here.

Here’s a song that is catchy and funny, with a lot of good lines (I especially liked the Comic Sans one), and the original song wasn’t half bad either. I could have done without the boob-shaking and awkward dancing for sure, but still, this is a good parody with a good (and apparently tricky to film) music video to boot.

3) “The Saga Begins”

Listen to the song here.

Okay, I’m not even much of a Star Wars fan, but I’ve at least seen enough of the movies to know some of the major plot points, and this song was really pretty clever. And it’s a parody of a song that was already pretty good, not to mention a bit nostalgic for me because it’s one of those that my dad used to play on the guitar. Another well-done music video, too.

2) “Ode to a Superhero”

Listen to the song here.

Remember what I said in my description of “White and Nerdy”? Well, this song’s relationship to the previous one on the list is much like that one, and not only can he make bad songs okay with copious application of whimsical lyrics, he can take songs that are already good and make them somehow even better. “Piano Man” was already not too shabby of a song on its own (another one I kind of grew up listening to, and I even considered learning the piano part to it at one time), but who else could turn it into a song about Spider-Man?

1) “Word Crimes”

Listen to the song here.

Well, the original version of this song was apparently pretty bad (never heard it myself, but I guess it was pretty misogynistic), but the parody is pretty great. I’m a dyed-in-the-wool word nerd, so it has that appeal from the getgo, and beyond that, it strikes just about all the right chords. Catchy music? Oh yes; that rhythm will stick with you for while. Nice lyrics? Yeah, instead of being absurd and crazy like some of Weird Al’s other songs, it is instead very grounded in reality (and describes a pretty relevant phenomenon in this day and age) while also being both smart-alecky and amusing. Good music video? Well, I’ve always liked kinetic typography, and this one, at least, uses that splendidly, so I’d say it’s definitely worth listening to the song in video form at least once. And that is why “Word Crimes” is my favorite Weird Al parody.

With that, that’s the end of the first list on this site. Expect more such lists about a variety of topics to come in the future.

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