“Weird Al” Yankovic. Underrated, Iconic, Influential

“Weird Al” has been pioneering the music business for decades. Staying truly unique in a time and industry where that is becoming more and more difficult to come across.

 

Twelve Grammy nominations. Four wins. Twelve million albums sold. Gold and platinum plaques everywhere. Drake? No. Adele? Nope. One of the greatest musical minds of all time, “Weird Al” Yankovic. The genius behind hits like “White and Nerdy”, “Amish Paradise”, and “Handy”. All parodies that are better than the originals.

Anyone can rap about having guns and money, but it takes true talent to rap about Dungeons and Dragons, his preference for M.C. Escher over traditional M.C’s, and his Myspace popularity. And Lorde can sing about not being rich, Al is too focused on the many uses of aluminum foil (there are more than you think). Al’s ability to craft quality material is amazing, he spun gold out of an Iggy Azalea song for God’s sake. His creativity is unparalleled, he can make a quality song about anything. Proper grammar, being handy, and The Phantom Menace are just a few examples of “straight fire” as the kids call it.

Al is a lyrical genius, especially when you consider what he’s actually singing/rapping about. “Did you know this junkyard slave/ isn’t even old enough to shave? But he can use the Force they say/ Ah do you see him hitting on the queen?/ though he’s just nine and she’s fourteen/ yeah he’s probably gonna marry her someday.” Sing that to the tune of “American Pie,” think back to Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, and enjoy. And don’t forget “Weird Al’s” parody of Chamillionaire’s “Ridin”, “White and Nerdy” which has better and more creative #BARZ than almost every other rap song released that year. Al drops gems like, “Yo I know pie to a thousand places/ ain’t got no grills but I still wear braces”, “I do vector calculus just for fun/ I ain’t got a gat but I got a soldering gun”, and “I’m nerdy in the extreme and whiter than sour cream/ I was in AV Club and Glee Club and even the Chess Team”.

“Weird Al” isn’t a novelty, he’s extremely successful. He’s released 13 albums since 1983, been nominated for twelve Grammys (four wins), and has 7 gold and 9 platinum certifications. Al’s over 30 year career has outlasted almost every artist he has parodied, Madonna (Like a Surgeon), Iggy Azalea (Handy), Coolio (Amish Paradise), and Robin Thicke (Word Crimes). You know you’ve made it when Weird Al asks to parody your song. Al is everything that’s right with the music industry. Pure, wholesome music that everyone can enjoy despite genre preference. Whether you listen for laughs or you’re apart of the ever growing Weird Al fandom, we can all find enjoyment in Al’s music.

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