“Weird Al” Yankovic is to accordions what Jonathan Davis is to bagpipes — the accidental spokesman for awesome in a place most people only count on for kitsch. I wasn’t around for this Californian parodist’s rises and falls, having gotten my official introduction to his catalog somewhere around the time of 1999’s Running With Scissors. “Weird Al” is notable in the music industry for providing multiple decades of laughter beyond any rational measure…and last night he brought the weirdness to Durham, NC without fail.
Much like Trans-Siberian Orchestra, the fall-scheduled Alpocalypse 2011 tour is a true show for all ages; “Weird Al”, Stephen Jay, Jim Kimo West, Rubén Valtierra, and Jon Bermuda Schwartz are all rounding over the hill, yet continuously aim to please a vast gamut of folks in all walks of life. From loyal, much older fans, to Duke alumni rocking definitive “White & Nerdy” pullovers, to those who dressed for church to see a wild-haired parodist with a Hawaiian shirt impersonate Oingo Boingo, Michael Jackson, and Nirvana, none were left wanting.
It even ended shortly after 9:00 p.m. on a Sunday night. Those of you in Raleigh who missed it, you have no excuses.
Most of “Weird Al”‘s current live set caters between the new Alpocalypse material and the man’s back catalogue, facilitating numerous costume changes, which include the “Fat” suit, red-and-black, zebra-striped tux during “Wanna B Ur Lovr”, and some Amish digs for his acclaimed and notorious Coolio parody. Throw in a hefty medley of the old, some extravagant displays of the new, his current polka routine, and a peacock suit during his Lady Gaga effort “Perform This Way”, the star of such classics as “Eat It” absolutely cannot lose; all of this is enhanced by streamers and bubbles, video clips giving a retrospective of Yankovic’s effect on pop culture, segments from Al TV, the works.
Oh, and dancing Storm Troopers. “The Saga Begins” and “Yoda” never had such a lasting impact, and weeks before Halloween, no less. The common saying goes that time will fly by whilst we’re having fun–in two hours of goofing off, “Weird Al” Yankovic and his ever-present bandmates made time jump out of an 80-story window to its cartoonish demise. I think it’s safe to say that laughter is truly the best medicine, and during the season of sniffling noses and Snuggies by the truckload, Durham Performing Arts Center in North Carolina was proof positive, 100%.
Alfred, you are indeed a weird one. Aren’t we all?
You Make Me
Smells Like Nirvana
Party In The CIA
Wanna B Ur Lovr
Medley: Money For Nothing/Beverly Hillbillies/Whatever You Like/Another Tattoo/eBay/I Want A New Duck/Theme From Rocky XIII/Spam/My Bologna/Ode To A Superhero/Lasagna/Eat It
Perform This Way
White & Nerdy
The Saga Begins