Weird Al Yankovic: 15 Things You Didn’t Know (Part 1)

GQ
GQ

Weird Al Yankovic is probably the world’s most famous parody artist. The 56-year-old has made a living of making fun of other people without being overtly or aggressively mean, and he has earned a lot of positive recognition because of it. However, though Yankovic has spent a considerable amount of time in the spotlight, there are still some things that many people don’t know about him. With that in mind, here we present our list of 15 things you probably didn’t know about Weird Al Yankovic. Check out part one below, and stay tuned for part two, coming soon!

Number Fifteen: He Has Been Playing the Accordion Since He Was Seven Years Old. Yankovic began playing the accordion on October 22, 1966 – one day before his seventh birthday! It looks like he was blessed with the gift of music from a very young age.

Number Fourteen: He Is Exceptionally Smart. In fact, Yankovic was his high school class’ valedictorian! Which makes sense, considering all of the hilariously clever and parodic songs he has written.

Number Thirteen: He Got His Nickname of “Weird Al” in College. Yankovic attended college at California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo, and that’s where he earned the iconic nickname of “Weird Al.” It was there that he hosted a radio show under the name of “Weird Al.”

Number Twelve: He Released His First Single in College. Yankovic’s first single was “My Bologna,” and he released it while he was in college at Cal Poly. The song was a parody of The Knack’s “My Sharona,” and he recorded it in a bathroom.

Number Eleven: His First Song to Get Into the Top 100 Was “Ricky.” The song was a parody of Toni Basil’s “Mickey,” and he wrote the lyrics about the show I Love Lucy. The song cracked the Top 100 in 1983, and since then he has had 11 more Top 100 hits.

Number Ten: He Got Permission to Parody From Everybody Except Coolio. Though Yankovic found a hit in “Amish Paradise” – his parody of “Gangsta’s Paradise” – there was a communication issue that led to him never getting Coolio’s permission to parody it. Yankovic ended up sending Coolio a personal apology.

Number Nine: He Was Rejected From McDonald’s. After college, Yankovic applied to McDonald’s. However, McDonald’s actually rejected him, stating that he was overqualified.

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