Mark Steyn, the transcontinental humorist and social critic, found the electrified nature of the “Live Earth” puzzling. Amplifying on the theme, he asked, “Why couldn’t Snoop Dogg demonstrate his commitment to the environment by having the entire sound system removed and announcing he’ll perform ‘Gangsta Walk’ accompained only by himself on the ukulele?”
Which prompted a reader to send Steyn this link, a video of the Wellington (N.Z.) International Ukulele Orchestra performing Outkast’s “Hey Ya.” Now, any ukulele performance is by its nature a folly, so the International Ukes hereby qualify for today’s Friday Follies.
But a bonus to boot, space boot more precisely, another version of “Hey Ya,” Napoleon Dynamite dancing to a cover version by the raucous Arizona band, the Supersuckers. It’s OK, especially since rock ‘n roll records aren’t selling this year. Plus an angry accordion version by Jason Wembly. And since we’re doing accordions, might as well pay tribute to the great North Dakotan, Angie Dickinson, set to Outkast. (As it happens, there are lots of Ukes in North Dakota, indeed, many are out near Dickinson. But not the stringed-instrument kind.)
Which brings us back to “Hey Ya Charlie Brown,” the first and best of the Peanuts tributes. Shake it like a Polaroid picture, Lucy.
All of this? Pure folly. But it’s Friday. The 13th.
UPDATE (12:10 p.m.): Happy 60th birthday, Roky Erickson.
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