10 Albums, 10 Days: Silly Songs with Larry

I got tagged on Facebook to do this project – share ten albums that greatly influenced my taste in music. One album per day for ten consecutive days. In theory for the Facebook version this is supposed to be without explanation… but I want to explain! So I’m going to blog the explanations here.

I started writing today’s post thinking I was going to write about a classic jazz album. One that everybody would recognize, and that is a favorite of mine for the same reason it’s a favorite of many, many people. But then I got to thinking – was it really formative for me? Probably not. And then this album sprang to mind and insisted that it be added to the list. Bear with me.

And now it’s time for Silly Songs with Larry, the part of the show where Larry comes out and sings a silly song. So, without further ado, Silly Songs with Larry.

Veggie Tales were just becoming a thing in my late high school years, and I didn’t have any familiarity with them until I hit college. Then one night I was with a church group at someone’s home and they had a Veggie Tales video on for the kids and I heard a (non-silly-song) rhyme that stopped me in my tracks. The king’s advisers are trying to figure out how to get rid of Daniel, and they include these lines:

We could use him as a footstool or a table to play Scrabble on
Then tie him up and beat him up and throw him out of Babylon

Wait, what’s that? Somebody with the nerve to rhyme “Scrabble on” with “Babylon” without blatantly winking at the camera while doing so? This is someone I needed to pay more attention to. So then I bought the Silly Songs with Larry CD, and it was all downhill from there.

This CD got dozens of plays at our house before we had kids old enough to listen to it. Heck, before we even had kids. I am a sucker for wordplay. This love would take me later to Weird Al Yankovic, and then to quickly embrace Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton. But before that was Phil Vischer and his silly songs.

Over the years the phrases have become engrained in our family’s vocabulary. “Oh where is my hairbrush?” “Where’s my water buffalo? Why don’t I have a water buffalo? Are you prepared to deal with that? I don’t think so!” “Now the moral of the story, (it’s the point we hope we’ve made): if you go a little loopy, better keep your nurse well paid.” I led a sing-along of The Cheeseburger Song at the end of a church hymn sing one time. It was awesome.

I am overly proud of the fact that my children now display the same predilection to altering lyrics to songs. My oldest once sang original funny lyrics to Rewrite The Stars from The Greatest Showman at a karaoke night. (All my kids sang Weird Al at karaoke night.) I am always quick to make up a funny lyric when I can. And one of these days I’m gonna memorize all the Spanish so I can sing Larry’s part in Dance of the Cucumber.

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