Weird Al Yankovic

Weird Al Yankovic began his career in the late-1970s as a novelty act playing the nerdy fool who thinks accordions and polkas are cool. His shtick was doing bombastic polka remakes of current MTV hits. He appeared briefly in 1977 on the Tom Snyder Show on NBC, who laughingly ushered him off the show with the phrase, "Great performance, Al. Don't quit your day job."

While most other novelty acts would have come and gone with one flavor-of-the-minute song parody on the radio, not Yankovic. He had the phenomenon of MTV waiting for his career. By combining goofy song parodies with over-the-top and very funny music videos, Weird Al Yankovic went from being a novelty act to a bona fide Grammy Award winning music personality. Famously taking on the likes of Madonna ("Like a Surgeon"), Red Hot Chilli Peppers ("Bedrock Anthem"), Robert Palmer ("Addicted to Spuds"), and his personal favorite target, Michael Jackson ("Eat It," "Fat"). While he poked fun at many big egos, amazingly, he was able to enjoy a mostly feud-free career, save a war or words waged by California-based rapper Coolio, who took offense to Yankovic's "Amish Paradise." Weird Al is still active today, and, though he has been making parodies for over thirty years, he continues to have an uncanny ability to write clever lyrics, that are culturally relevant.

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