Wednesday 29 July 2020

Book ~ "Weird Al: Seriously" (2020) Lily E. Hirsch

From Goodreads ~ From his love of accordions and Hawaiian print shirts to his popular puns and trademark dance moves, "Weird Al" Yankovic has made a career out of making us laugh.

Funny music is often dismissed as light and irrelevant, but Yankovic's fourteen successful studio albums prove there is more going on than comedic music's reputation suggests. In this book, for the first time, the parodies, original compositions, and polka medleys of the Weird Al universe finally receive their due respect. Lily Hirsch weaves together original interviews with the prince of parody himself, creating a fresh take on comedy and music's complicated romance. She reveals that Yankovic's jests have always had a deeper meaning, addressing such topics as bullying, celebrity, and racial and gender stereotypes.

Weird Al is undeterred by those who say funny music is nothing but a low-brow pastime. And thank goodness. With his good-guy grace still intact, Yankovic remains unapologetically and unmistakably himself. Reveling in the mischief and wisdom of Yankovic's forty-year career, this book is an Al-expense-paid tour of a true comedic and musical genius. 

"Weird Al" Yankovic is an American singer and songwriter, who is known for his humorous songs and often parodies songs.  I was/am a fan and had bought his first eight albums ... the last one I bought was Alapalooza (1993) and went to that concert.  Then for some reason I didn't buy any more.

Me and Weird Al during his Alapalooza tour

Gord and I went to his Alpocalypse concert in 2011.  There were cameras throughout the theatre as they were taping the concert and he seemed to be playing more to the cameras than the audience so it's wasn't great.

I've see his movie UHF a few times.

So when I came across this book I thought it would be an interesting read.  It was okay but I didn't find I got to know Al, though.  The book is more like a text book analyzing his songs.  I never realized they were so deep ... I just thought they were silly and funny.  There were numerous discussions about bullying, being a nerd, Trump and more.  I guess I was expecting something more light and humorous given the subject. And I found it got repetitive at times ... as much as I like Amish Paradise and White & Nerdy, they were covered many times with what seemed to be the same information.

But one thing I did as I was reading the book that was fun was stopping and watching his videos on YouTube.  And I've listened to his first couple of albums on Spotify and will listen to the rest.

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