Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Rhapsody In Bohemia, Take 20

One of the weirder bits of trivia I picked up in college was the fact that the single most parodied song in existence is The Streets of Laredo.

I can believe this. I personally have heard any number of versions of that song and may well have contributed to the total number of parodies, though I have no distinct memory of having done so. Things like that happen in college.

But that was a long time ago, and my guess is that with the advent of YouTube and the fact that The Streets of Laredo was an old song even when I was young, things have changed. If I had to guess, I’d say that the current reigning champion for parodied songs is probably Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen.

Or maybe it’s just the “Most Covered Song.” Sometimes it’s an awfully thin line between the two.

So I did a bit of digging around on YouTube, which is a site dedicated to the proposition that there are a great many people on this planet upon whose hands time weighs very heavily, and sure enough, I found more than my share of versions of that song.

These need to be shared with the wider world, or at least that portion of it that reads this blog. And since Nathan wants me to demonstrate that I have in fact internalized his helpful instructions on how to create links on this blog, I figured that this would be a good way to do that.

So here are twenty more versions of Bohemian Rhapsody, many of which appear to have been produced by people who were actively sober during the process.


Four Finns in a Volkswagen

On a ukulele (and a marvelously peaceful rendition it is)

On two ukuleles and a drum set (not peaceful, just weird)


25 of the Most Annoying Voices in Music

An Austrian brass band

Financial humor

Everything sounds better in bluegrass

Or as a polka

Maybe a symphony?


One guy, four violins

Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppet Theater

Classical guitar

For your newborn, here it is as a lullaby

A bassoon quartet

Violin rock and roll

Calculus humor

One guy, one guitar, and a whole lot of dreadlocks

Hungary’s Got Talent!


Eric said...

Or maybe it’s just the “Most Covered Song.” Sometimes it’s an awfully thin line between the two.

Officially, the most-covered song is still "Yesterday" by Messrs. Lennon & McCartney (a quick Google search suggests it hasn't been dethroned since Guinness decreed it so, though one article bizarrely gives first place to "Eleanor Rigby" before acknowledging "Yesterday" has been done more--supposedly).

I'm always inclined to think the most-covered song is more likely to be "Blowin' In The Wind" or "This Land Is Your Land", but what do I know? And how do we define "cover", actually? I mean, various National Anthems (including our own) get performed live at thousands of sporting events a day worldwide.

Anyway, I'm not sure any of this was the point. I just wanted to chime in. Hello.

Tom said...

Yay! You are the Linkmeister!

Nathan said...

I just loathe people who fill their posts with umpty-bazillion links. Whaddaya think...we've got all day to roam around everywhere you send us?!

:) :) :) :)

P.S. a link to Streets of Laredo would have come in handy. I drew a total blank on what that one sounds like.

P.P.S. Am I getting anywhere near being banned here yet?

David said...

Hi Eric!

The Linkmeister - I like that. :)

And Nathan: The Original

vince said...

My favorites were The Muppets version and Calculus Rhapsody. Mmmm..... Muppets and math.

Nathan said...


Nathan said...

Now that I've had a chance to watch some of them, the bluegrass version is surprisingly good.

Rufus Dogg said...

This is just cool... I got lost in some of them, especially the Bluegrass one... would it be wrong to say I replayed it and jammed along with it with my banjo? Yeah, it probably would, so let's just say I didn't do that... :-)

David said...

I'm always amazed at how well other genres translate into bluegrass.

When I was in a band in college, we used to do bluegrass versions of Bruce Springsteen's "Hungry Heart" and AC/DC's "Highway to Hell."

Nathan said...


I didn't know you played an instrument. What do you play? I've got a friend from college who could still play banjo professionally...if he hadn't decided to be a grip. :)

David said...

Mostly I sing (I'm actually a pretty good singer), but I also play keyboards. And in the band I was the rhythm section, which meant bongos and Jew's harp.

The band was called Not the Catfish

I think I'm enjoying this linking skill. :)

KimK said...

And look at you: linking like you were born to it! :) The kids have also enjoyed the "research" that went into collecting the very best of Bohemian Rhapsody. Me, not so much: it's a brain worm infesting my every quiet moment. Although maybe now it will be displaced by Streets of Laredo.

timb111 said...

I ran across this on Boing-Boing. Pretty good, all things considered:

Drunkard's serenade: "Bohemian Rhapsody" from the back of a police car

"Here is a man who has apparently been arrested for intoxication in an unknown jurisdiction, disputing the charge from the back of a police cruiser by belting out a genuinely soulful rendition of Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody." Skip to 3:40 for "Scaramouche! Scaramouche!" "

David said...

My brother sent that one to me just the other day!

I tell you, I feel like such the cultural trendsetter these days. :)