I don’t attend rock concerts — as a general rule. But I did attend one Sunday Night.
Weird Al Yankovic was in concert at Starlight Theatre in Kansas City, so I went, equipped with ear plugs, and had a good time.
My cultural references aren’t that good, so I only recognized parts of the parodies, and enjoyed most them just the same.
There were people of my generation there, but there were also a lot of teens and twenty-somethings there, rooting and cheering on a 56-year old playing an accordion, as my wife so aptly noted.
Weird Al was current when he started out, and he has remained more current than many of the people and things he has parodied over the years.
Sunday was part of his Mandatory Fun World Tour, named after his album Mandatory Fun.
I’ll admit I had some help, from my younger generation, to put together the list below from the concert. But as you peruse the songs and title, you will see the absolute breadth of cultural references that Weird Al draws from:
- – Means the song is on the album “Mandatory Fun”
~ + Tacky – Parody of “Happy” by Pharrell Williams; walked live through the lot to get to the stage
~ + Lame Claim to Fame – Style parody of Southern Culture on the Skids
~ Perform This Way – Parody of “Born This Way” by Lady Gaga
~ + Foil – Parody of “Royals” by Lorde
~ + Word Crimes – Parody of “Blurred Lines” by Robin Thicke, T.I., and Pharrell Williams
~ + Now That’s What I Call Polka! – Polka medley
A polka medley of:
- “Too Fat Polka” by Arthur Godfrey
- “Wrecking Ball” by Miley Cyrus
- “Pumped Up Kicks” by Foster the People
- “Best Song Ever” by One Direction
- “Gangnam Style” by Psy
- “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jepsen
- “Scream & Shout” by will.i.am featuring Britney Spears
- “Somebody That I Used to Know” by Gotye featuring Kimbra
- “Timber” by Pitbull featuring Kesha
- “Sexy and I Know It” by LMFAO
- “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring Wanz
- “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk featuring Pharrell Williams
- with new music by “Weird Al” Yankovic
Weird Al Medley –
- Party in the CIA – Parody of “Party in the USA” by Miley Cyrus
- It’s All About the Pentiums – Parody of “It’s All About the Benjamins (Rock Remix)” by Sean “Puff Daddy” Combs
- + Handy – Parody of “Fancy” by Iggy Azalea
- Bedrock Anthem – Parody of “Under the Bridge” and “Give It Away” by Red Hot Chili Peppers
- Another One Rides the Bus – Parody of “Another One Bites the Dust” by Queen
- Ode to a Superhero – Parody of “Piano Man” by Billy Joel
- Gump – Parody of “Lump” by the band The Presidents of the United States of America
- + Inactive – Parody of “Radioactive” by Imagine Dragons
- eBay – Parody of “I Want It That Way” by Backstreet Boys
- Canadian Idiot – Parody of “American Idiot” by Green Day
+ First World Problems – Original, in the style of the band Pixies
~ White and Nerdy – Parody of “Ridin’” by Chamillionaire feat. Krayzie Bone
~ Amish Paradise – Parody of “Gangsta’s Paradise” by Coolio feat. LV
~ Smells Like Nirvana – Parody of “Smells Like Teen Spirit” by Nirvana
~ Fat – Parody of “Bad” by Michael Jackson
~ Dare to Be Stupid – Original, in the style of Devo
Weird Al (Acoustic) Medley –
- Eat It – Parody of “Beat It” by Michael Jackson
- I Lost on Jeopardy – Parody of “Jeopardy” by the Greg Kihn Band
- I Love Rocky Road – Parody of “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll” as performed by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, originally by Arrows
- Like a Surgeon – Parody of “Like a Virgin” by Madonna
~ Wanna B Ur Lovr – Original, in the style of Midnite Vultures-era Beck and Prince.
- We All Have Cell Phones – Original, based on a fake 1999 AL-TV interview with Michael Stipe of R.E.M.
- The Saga Begins – Parody of “American Pie” by Don McLean
- Yoda -Parody of “Lola” by The Kinks
When the screens first came up at the beginning, we wondered where it was being broadcast from, and then we figured it was live from backstage, until we saw him come out of the side door into the open seating area and then across the stage to start.
I really enjoyed “Word Crimes” — a rock song about correct grammar, how much better can you get than that?
The songs required a lot of costume changes, but all the video vignettes between scenes nicely covered each and every one. He has been doing videos for so long that he has a lot to choose from, and each one fit the upcoming subject nicely.
When he got to the end, it didn’t feel like the end, which of course it wasn’t, because we got the encore, which really felt like an end.
But it is nice to know that someone of my generation can still be relevant to other generations — even if one has to be “weird” to be so.