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One Song to the Tune of Another
October 4, 2010 11:44 AM   Subscribe

One Song to the Tune of Another is just what it sounds like. A selection of greatest hits from BBC Radio's I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue. (SLYT)
posted by CrunchyFrog (45 comments total) 36 users marked this as a favorite

 
Love that programme so hard. Not my favourite round, mind, although it's better than Swanee Kazoo, which should have been strangled at birth.

I still collapse with exploding side syndrome every time I think of the Willie Rushton glory years and, "The Epileptic Bishop, by E.Q. Maniacal-Movements"

Lord. Whatever happened to wit?
posted by Decani at 11:52 AM on October 4, 2010


This is hysterical and I had no idea it existed. Thanks for posting.
posted by wittgenstein at 11:57 AM on October 4, 2010


I like to annoy my mom by singing "Amazing Grace" to the tune of "Yellow Rose of Texas." Just about any song or poem in common meter can be sung to the tune of "Gilligan's Island," "Amazing Grace," or, my favorite, "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing."
posted by MrMoonPie at 11:57 AM on October 4, 2010


"The Epileptic Bishop, by E.Q. Maniacal-Movements"

Ladies and Gentlemen! Will you please welcome Mr. and Mrs. Bee and their son William, the well-known RAF Officer and tramp, The Flight Officer Bum Bill Bee.

Not sure who came up with this originally but I found it again here ...
posted by carter at 12:08 PM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


Marvellous and required listening in the Dundee barracks. RIP Humph.
posted by MajorDundee at 12:09 PM on October 4, 2010


I like to annoy my mom by singing "Amazing Grace" to the tune of "Yellow Rose of Texas." Just about any song or poem in common meter can be sung to the tune of "Gilligan's Island," "Amazing Grace," or, my favorite, "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing."

Once you discover ballad meter, it is hard to undiscover it. Myself, I cannot help but hear most of Emily Dickinson's poems to the Gilligan's Island theme. The Rime of the Ancient Mariner is another one that falls that way.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 12:14 PM on October 4, 2010


This makes it slightly less amazing:

#
CreativeFilmMaker
4 months ago

Do they get lyrics sheets or did they randomly have these songs memorized?
CreativeFilmMaker 4 months ago
#
LuthansaTerminal
4 months ago

@CreativeFilmMaker

They have them written down, they also know which songs they'll be given


It's still funny though. In a, like, british way.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 12:14 PM on October 4, 2010


CrunchyFrog says the round is just what it sounds like, but I feel it might need a little more explanation than that.

Think of a song as a website. Then the words are like the "content" and the music is the "stylesheet". Although the content and stylesheet are linked by the website, it is possible to use a different stylesheet with the existing content to produce a different website altogether.

Now, I know what you're thinking. Where does this leave the "blink" tag, something that can make even the most beautiful website hideously ugly? At the piano is Colin Sell.
posted by Electric Dragon at 12:15 PM on October 4, 2010 [11 favorites]


Samantha tells me she has to nip out now as she's been invited to an exclusive club to meet a group of aristocrats. She's very excited to see where all the big knobs hang out. She says at such a posh function she and the other girls will probably end up trying to speak with plums in their mouths.

Samantha is off on a tour of the Lake District with a naturist gentleman friend who wants to strip off at Keswick and Cockermouth.

Samantha is off on a dinner date with a gentleman friend from Moscow who's brought over a variety of caviars and an array of vodka-based apperitifs. She says he's going to offer her delicious food in his hotel room and then liqour out on the balcony.

BBC Radio 4, ladies and gentlemen. You have to love it.
posted by Decani at 12:24 PM on October 4, 2010 [4 favorites]


About five years ago, I worked part-time for a small recording studio that needed a third pair of hands. The studio made most of its money from working with advertising clients--recording voice-overs and such.

One day, we got a call from one of the local ad agencies, asking for help on a new ad for their client, Christian Children's Fund (now known as Child Fund International.) The client wanted a new version of their usual "Amazing Grace" television spot I'm sure many have you have seen over the years. So it fell to me to find some kids who liked to sing. I called SPARC--the School for Performing Arts in the Richmond Community--and asked for a list of names and numbers of kids in their program who had great voices. Over the next two days, I called up various families, got parental permission over the phone and listened to about 20 kids of all ages do a little singing. In the end, we picked a great 9-year-old girl as the voice we thought the client would want to hear. My piano playing even got to stay in the finished ad on TV, too.

But the best part, and the reason I'm sharing this story here: The youngest of the kids I called was about 6, and her audition was adorable. I explained to her mother that her daughter would need to sing "Amazing Grace" if she were selected for the in-studio audition, but for me she could sing anything she wanted. The mother said, "Oh, she knows Amazing Grace."

The little girl got on the phone and we chatted about singing and being on TV and she was really excited about the whole thing. Then she started singing:

A-a-ma-a-zing Grace
Ho-ow swe-et the sound...

To the tune of The Star-Spangled Banner. Damnedest thing.
posted by emelenjr at 12:24 PM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


It's still funny though. In a, like, british way.
So.......there's another way?
posted by MajorDundee at 12:32 PM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


The first example, the Procol Harum/Muppet mashup, was impossible to top (at least for me, they are two of my lifelong influences), but the Talking Heads/Gilbert & Sullivan one was semi-awesome. It helps when the songs' lyrics have similar meter but totally different styles.

There are other OSTTTOA examples on YouTube: the best, IMO, includes one of the best explanations I've heard.

Of course, "Stairway to Gilligan's Island" and "A Day in the Life of Green Acres" are also fine examples in the same milieu.
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:33 PM on October 4, 2010


It's still funny though. In a, like, british way.
So.......there's another way?


For "funny NOT in a British way", see: Jeff Foxworthy, one joke out of seven.
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:36 PM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


I love I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue so hard. I have nearly all of the episodes in mp3 form thanks to the Internet Archive.

However: do not fall asleep listening to it. I now have random songs to the tunes of other random songs in my head. Especially House of The Rising Sun.... that tune goes to everything now.
posted by strixus at 12:36 PM on October 4, 2010


People on the internet here and there will tell you that this or that thing is, quote, "the best thing ever".

But, in fact, this is the best thing ever.
posted by Wolfdog at 12:37 PM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]




I really wish that I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue was available via podcast. I'd guess that it isn't available primarily because of this segment, which is too bad.
posted by Johnny Assay at 12:41 PM on October 4, 2010


Did you know that Emily Dickenson goes just about perfectly to the theme to Pokemon?

Now you know. And you can never forget it. Never ever ever.

I'm going to go to my crying corner, now.
posted by KChasm at 12:42 PM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


BBC Radio 4, ladies and gentlemen. You have to love it.

Radio 4 is why I pay my licence fee/ broadcasting tax whatever you want to call it. It is a multi-faceted gem which pleasures me daily.
posted by dash_slot- at 12:44 PM on October 4, 2010


Around the holidays, I like to sing William Blake's "The Tyger" to the tune of "Angels We Have Heard on High." But that's not really the same thing.
posted by Shohn at 12:46 PM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


Johnny Assay - Here you go.
posted by strixus at 12:47 PM on October 4, 2010 [2 favorites]


Oh! I wish I was British so that I would have always known about this and accepted it as a part of day to day life. This is grand!
posted by ChuraChura at 12:54 PM on October 4, 2010


Rob Brydon singing "Delilah" in a round of Pick-Up Song was brilliant. Humph was lost for words afterwards.
posted by John Shaft at 12:54 PM on October 4, 2010


That was marvelous. Thank you for posting it.
posted by Scattercat at 12:56 PM on October 4, 2010


KChasm: "Did you know that Emily Dickenson goes just about perfectly to the theme to Pokemon?

Now you know. And you can never forget it. Never ever ever.

I'm going to go to my crying corner, now
"

If there's video for this, I will love you in the most nonthreatening to my wife way possible.
posted by theichibun at 1:01 PM on October 4, 2010


Johnny Assay - Here you go.

Oh sweet mother of God! strixus, i want to have your babies NOW!!! You found the motherlode!
Now someone show me how to get all that goodness off the screen and onto my iphone and that'll be the last metafilter will see of me for the next year!!
posted by ramix at 1:41 PM on October 4, 2010


You can stream or download more than 315 episodes of "I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue" (spanning 1972-2002) on Archive.org. The archive is part of the Old Time Radio collection.
posted by prinado at 1:41 PM on October 4, 2010 [5 favorites]


Right click, save as, download. Then add folder you downloaded to into iTunes, and then synch to phone.

I have 73-84 on my phone right now.

There are some really glorious REALLY young sounding Stephen Fry appearances.
posted by strixus at 1:54 PM on October 4, 2010


Samantha went along to the gramophone library earlier to collect the teams' records. It's pitch black down there, so Samantha and the elderly archivist have taken to searching the shelves by candlelight, which can be messy, so while Samantha passes down the discs, the nice man holds the ladder while he cleans the dust and wax off in the dark.
posted by Grangousier at 2:10 PM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


"Degradation" by Gorilla Biscuits to the tune of "Glycerine" by Bush.
posted by 23skidoo at 2:11 PM on October 4, 2010


Around the holidays, I like to sing William Blake's "The Tyger" to the tune of "Angels We Have Heard on High."

Damn you.

Wait. Thank you.
posted by sourwookie at 2:11 PM on October 4, 2010


Around the holidays, I like to sing William Blake's "The Tyger" to the tune of "Angels We Have Heard on High."

So wait, what do you use for the chorus?
posted by nebulawindphone at 2:19 PM on October 4, 2010


I grew up listening to this and the nearly equally delicious Just A Minute. The family would be eating our evening meal with Radio 4 on for these programmes which, despite the Samantha jokes, were on at 6.30.
posted by i_cola at 2:22 PM on October 4, 2010


You can stream or download more than 315 episodes of "I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue" (spanning 1972-2002) on Archive.org. The archive is part of the Old Time Radio collection.

Oh thank you thank you! I have a huge number of episodes from a bittorrent archive, but it didn't have the one I wanted, which was "Bat Out Of Hell" sung to the tune of "Postman Pat", and I found it through your link here.
posted by daveje at 2:39 PM on October 4, 2010


Rob Brydon doing Delilah
posted by vbfg at 3:22 PM on October 4, 2010 [2 favorites]


prinado and I apparently function on the same wavelength. Good to see another person out there who knows Archive.org's wonderful work
posted by strixus at 7:36 PM on October 4, 2010


> Did you know that Emily Dickenson goes just about perfectly to the theme to Pokemon?

Oh, thank god. That'll be much better than the theme song of Gilligan's Island, which is what I hear every Emily Dickenson poem to now.

I hope that someone reads this post and knows how irritated I still am at them for singing "Because I Could Not Stop For Death" to the tune of Gilligan's Island.
posted by Made of Star Stuff at 8:09 PM on October 4, 2010 [2 favorites]


Well, crap. Now I've got the lyrics of the Pokemon theme to the tune of Gilligan's Island stuck in my head. This is pretty much the worst thing ever.
posted by NMcCoy at 2:46 AM on October 5, 2010 [1 favorite]


So wait, what do you use for the chorus?

You got me. The whole thing comes crashing down when the chorus comes along. I usually just fill with something like:

"Wi-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-i-iliam Blake. Wrote about a tyger." Or something equally stupid.
posted by Shohn at 5:28 AM on October 5, 2010 [2 favorites]


I love it.
posted by nebulawindphone at 6:13 AM on October 5, 2010


My sole contribution to this genre appears to be (sorry for the purely local appeal) the discovery that "The Owl and the Pussycat" can be sung to the tune of the Minnesota Wild's official anthem, "The State of Hockey". Which works for me, because I can't ever remember the words to the State of Hockey but I've had The Owl and the Pussycat memorized since I was 6 and my mom would award cash prizes for memorizing various poems, speeches, and psalms.
posted by norm at 8:37 AM on October 5, 2010


So wait, what do you use for the chorus?

Oh trust me, after having this stuck in my head all of last night: it stills works, with a little fudging around.

(a bit run together) Innnnnnn what-distant-deeps-or-skies-burnt-the-fire-in-thine-eyes
(beat) on what wings dare he as-pire
(to the inexcelsis Deo bit) what the hand dare seize the fire?

I may or may not have been singing along to this.
posted by Solon and Thanks at 9:33 AM on October 5, 2010 [1 favorite]


And who could forget Lionel Blair and Una Stubbs doing all kinds of everything against the clock?
posted by Grangousier at 2:01 PM on October 5, 2010


Sorry, I'm listening through them all now. A limerick from a Mrs Trellis of North Wales:
There was a young lady from Slough
Who last year developed a cough
She wasn't to know
It would last until now
Let's hope the poor girl will pull through.
posted by Grangousier at 3:12 PM on October 5, 2010 [2 favorites]


Strixus, I don't know whether to damn you to hell or to thank you. I've been listening to these things now for the last three days, and they're ruining my productivity something fierce. I now realize that there are many things that I like that owe a debt of gratitude to this silly show, including 'Wait Wait Don't Tell Me', which seems like a pale shade of this now, to 'Whose Line Is It Anyway' which appears to be a straight spinoff/knockoff. Which I'd probably know already had I bothered to go google it.
posted by norm at 9:53 AM on October 7, 2010


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