I like an eclectic assortment of music. On a daily basis, my playlist can range from country to classical to classic rock. I’ve seen shock rock legend Alice Cooper live, caught the eye of Def Leppard drummer Rick Allen and got a thumbs (well, thumb) up from him, and was just three rows back from country dreamboat Kenny Chesney. But for as many different types of music as I like, there is one that really speaks to my heart: geektastic music.
That’s right, geektastic music. Everything from traditional filk to nerdcore to parodies, if it’s full of geek culture references, I’m bound to listen to it over and over. The songs are catchy, usually light and fun (though there are some tear-jerkers), and are another way to get all fan-girly over the things I love.
Geektastic music is nothing new – Dr. Demento’s Star Trekkin’, Buckner & Garcia’s Pac-Man Fever, Leonard Nemoy’s “classic” The Ballad of Bilbo Baggins, and hello, Weird Al, anyone?! – but thanks to the internet, it’s had an explosive expansion, even including some really well done videos. Here are some of my favorites – some you may have already heard of, some that might be new to you. (All links are to videos, and not all are SFW.)
Hey There Cthulhu by Eben Brooks
Eben Brooks was my introduction to true filk, and I’ve been lucky enough to be serenaded by him at the past two MisCons (alright, alright, he wasn’t serenading me specifically, but let me dream a little, kthanx?). It was at MisCon in 2009 when I first heard Hey There Cthulhu (to the tune of The Plain White T’s’ Hey There Delilah), a sweet ode to the great tentacle monster. If the cultists of Cthulhu had a theme song, this would be it.
Nerdy Girls Need Love Too by Amy Lee Radigan
“If I was a time lord, both my hearts would beat for you…” A nerdy girl, her guitar, and her quest to find love. This beautiful acoustic number rings so true for any geek girl who’s ever searched for a geek guy to share her life with. I found my geek guy years ago, and this song reminds me how lucky I am.
G33k & G4M3R Girls by Team Unicorn (Probably NSFW)
Odds are you’ve heard of or already seen this parody of Katy Perry’s California Girls, but the eye candy may distract you slightly from the lyrics. (Those girls are hot. Hard not to be distracted.) But that song is such a tribute to girls who love comics, sci-fi, manga, and games, I feel frakking empowered when I listen to it. Plus there are Stan Lee and Katee Sackhoff cameos, and Seth Green rapping. What’s not to like? “Browncoats represent, we aim to misbehave!” Indeed. (Note: my link is to the director’s cut.)
Fett’s Vette by mc chris (NSFW)
mc chris (who you might also know as the voice of MC Pee Pants on Aqua Teen Hunger Force) wrote this awesome rap in honor of everyone’s favorite bounty hunter, Boba Fett. This is an example of what some call nerdcore hip-hop, and though mc chris doesn’t care for that term himself, I think it’s an accurate descriptor. (Note: not an official video.)
Do You Wanna Date My Avatar by the cast of The Guild
Joss Whedon is my master now, and Felicia Day is my mistress (not that way, you pervs!). I adore everything that geekgirl does, and even though I’m not a MMORPG player, The Guild resonates with me. I absolutely adore the video she and the rest of the cast did for Do You Wanna Date My Avatar. The song’s fantastic, and it’s great to see the cast in their avatar costumes. After seeing this video, the guy in the weird red and blue cosplay outfit at Valley Con finally made sense.
Tonight I’m Frakking You featuring Kunal Nayyar and Matthew Brian Brown (Probably NSFW)
I’m not exactly a dance music girl, but I can’t get this Break Originals single out of my head. The song references everything from Big Bang Theory (no surprise with Kunal Nayyar involved) to Dr. Who, and the video features Caprica’s Alessandra Torresani in a Slave Leia bikini, Richard Hatch as a bartender, and Chad Vader. It’s a whole lot of awesome.
It’s the End of the Verse as We Know It (and I Feel Fine) by Eben Brooks
Another shout-out to Eben for his wonderful Firefly filk. Imagine condensing the entire Firefly/Serenity story into about three and a half minutes – that’s what this fast-paced R.E.M. parody does. You haven’t lived until you’ve heard a hundred con-goers belt out, “What the hell, Joss?!” in unison.
F**k Me, Ray Bradbury by Rachel Bloom (Absolutely NSFW!)
Sometimes, there’s nothing better than a good book. Nothing. And apparently Rachel Bloom is even more passionate about reading than I am. I don’t know what Ray Bradbury thinks about this song in his honor – for his 90th birthday, even – but I think it’s pretty damn cool. (But I like Kurt Vonnegut, too. Hope I don’t get bitch-slapped.)
Neutra Face (A Bearded Poker Face Parody) by DD40
OK, if you haven’t worked with typesetting or graphic design before, this one might not be your cup of tea. But if you’ve ever ripped your hair out over seeing yet another newsletter/blog/whatever in Papyrus or Comic Sans, you’ll love Neutra Face. Even if it’s bold italic. (This is so not what Lady Gaga ever intended.)
But Wait, There’s More!
Beyond the filk/nerdcore/parody genres, let’s not forget the world of geeky soundtracks! From theme songs to background music, the soundtracks of geektastic movies and TV shows are in constant rotation at my house, and probably at yours, too. My husband, who normally hates musicals, can’t get enough of the soundtrack to Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog. We own all the Star Wars tracks (ladies and gentlemen , the John Williams Orchestra!), as well as those for the old and new Battlestar Galacticas. And there’s a reason The Hero of Canton has taken on a life of its own.
Naturally there are many great geektastic songs out there I’ve never heard of, and I’d be glad to take a listen to any recommendations you all might have! I hope you like the ones I’ve listed here!
What’s your favorite geektastic song?