June, June, June
June 1, 2015 8:19 AM   Subscribe

Leslie Uggams on the viral video that appears on your social media feeds every June 1st.
posted by roomthreeseventeen (35 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
That was incredibly awesome.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 8:28 AM on June 1, 2015

I just came here to make this post!!!

This video is a June 1 tradition and everyone should watch it. It is the very definition of perseverance.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:32 AM on June 1, 2015 [2 favorites]

So wonderful.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 8:39 AM on June 1, 2015

She has an excellent sense of humor about it. Much admiration for her.
posted by Joey Michaels at 8:49 AM on June 1, 2015 [1 favorite]

This is a tradition?
Where? When? How?
The first video explains the second video, but nothing explains how I missed the virality of the video. Is this something I'd have to have real human interactions to understand?

The first video is pretty good.
posted by Seamus at 8:50 AM on June 1, 2015 [2 favorites]

I've never seen or heard of this video before (non US person). It's a horrible cold, windy, rainy June 1st here and this cheered me right up, thanks! She's really funny and gracious about being asked basically "what happened that day you fucked up on live TV?"
posted by billiebee at 8:51 AM on June 1, 2015 [2 favorites]

There may be a subset effect here where if you have friends who are into musical theater it's totally ubiquitous genre lore, and if you don't it's like what's this now with the what what
posted by cortex at 8:54 AM on June 1, 2015 [8 favorites]

U.S. person here who knows almost no musical theater types, and I'd never seen nor heard of this video. I'm glad that just got rectified though. This video is amazing, a golden example of hmmph grfgmfmf mrururrr.
posted by Itaxpica at 8:58 AM on June 1, 2015 [2 favorites]

I've never seen the viral video before, but that is the very definition of "the show must go on"; if you don't know the words, make some up, hit the big line as many times as you can, and finish up with a big voice and a big smile like you've just knocked it out of the park even if you've fucked up. What a trouper.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 9:14 AM on June 1, 2015 [5 favorites]

It is always interesting to see how distinctly sharded experiences like this can be. I have never heard of the video, the tradition, or the song, and aside from the way the singer appears to be sort of shaking oddly as she walks, I really don't get what is remarkable about it. And yet clearly there is a completely different experience of this video out there.... Makes me wonder about things like Benny Lava, All Your Base, or Bulbous Bouffant, which are more or less universally known among my acquaintances and are frequently quoted, but are undoubtedly just weird and incomprehensible references to most of the world.
posted by Mars Saxman at 9:17 AM on June 1, 2015 [2 favorites]

I think there's also a large percentage of people who may have seen this thanks to the part of Ms. Uggams story where her friend told her "you're in every gay bar in America." While that's (obviously) an exaggeration, and though this obviously gets an even wider audience because of YouTube, this is something I saw years before YouTube.

Even if you're not super knowledgeable about show tunes like me (relative to other gay men in my demographic), this is a video you remember seeing in a bar, especially if people are super-excited to explain to you why this video with poor tracking and Stacey Keach is showing up and double-especially if you grew up loving Fantasy and therefore Leslie Uggams.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 9:26 AM on June 1, 2015 [2 favorites]

Bulbous Bouffant

posted by Faint of Butt at 9:27 AM on June 1, 2015 [4 favorites]

I've never seen it before and i have a million musical theater types on my social media. Hm.
posted by sweetkid at 9:28 AM on June 1, 2015 [2 favorites]

after reading the actual lyrics to "June is Busting Out All Over", I think that you could show a video of someone singing the correct lyrics to the first part of the song and it would still sound 85% made-up

Just read them. Someone was on the good stuff when they wrote that I tell you what.
posted by billiebee at 9:42 AM on June 1, 2015

I play in a band, and like every musician, I know the feeling of "fucking up" (missing a note, or forgetting the lyrics) and feeling mortified for the rest of the evening. But then I remember that most of the time, nobody in the audience, and sometimes not even my fellow band members, will have noticed anything amiss. It's not that people don't pay attention; it's that what seems like a huge blunder to me is usually barely noticeable to people less familiar with the material.

It helps of course if stuff like that doesn't end up on video.

(I watched the second video first, and I didn't notice anything wrong until the second pass with the subtitles.)
posted by monospace at 9:59 AM on June 1, 2015 [6 favorites]

Most of the time, I don't think my attention span has suffered because of Internet usage, but then something like this gets posted and 1. I'm like "no way I'm watching a three minute video with no description or context," and 2. spend at least twice that amount of time clicking around the video, increasingly annoyed, trying to find the viral part.
posted by Ian A.T. at 10:42 AM on June 1, 2015 [9 favorites]

I've never been able to watch that video for more that thirty seconds because it makes me so intensely uncomfortable, but the interview is just so great. I still had to skip through the clips, though.
posted by eamondaly at 11:34 AM on June 1, 2015 [3 favorites]

So I totally didn't notice that she was flubbing the words rather than me just failing to understand them until the last time through when I was listening carefully, trying to figure out why this would be viral at all...

She sold it pretty darn well.
posted by Zalzidrax at 11:41 AM on June 1, 2015 [4 favorites]

We should probably work on codifying the steps necessary to break 'meme' news to someone. Navigating the intricacies of notifying your friend that they've "gone viral" shouldn't be stressful for either party. Having an example or suggestions just like we have a set of tropes/standards in place for baby announcements and marital engagements and challenging duels would help immensely. Right now all I've got is:

1. Lead with just exactly how popular the meme is.
Nathan, about 17 million YouTubers have seen a video of you online!

2. Compliment your friends eminent likability.
You are so! popular! right now!

3. Put off answering any questions as to what exactly has gone viral for as long as possible.
Let's see, oh sure you can find it anywhere with a little goosjxeling but I want to find the place where I saw it first. Hold on...

4. Give up finding it and offer to email them later.
I'll send it to you! Bye!

5. Run, hide. This has not be a successful strategy so far.
posted by carsonb at 11:47 AM on June 1, 2015 [6 favorites]

Myself and most of my friends are into musical theatre pretty deeply and I'd never seen or heard of this until just now.
posted by Navelgazer at 12:01 PM on June 1, 2015

Every time I perform, I think about this video and feel so much better because I figure "Well, if Leslie Uggams can fuck up on a massive scale and not die of shame, so can I, especially because I'm not doing it on TV."
posted by holborne at 12:11 PM on June 1, 2015

Today I learned that I get the same visceral "Oh god please don't interact with me I came here to be passively entertained!" reaction from video as I do in real life.
posted by usonian at 12:26 PM on June 1, 2015 [2 favorites]

My first reaction was to the awful patter they gave Stacy Keach to read, and then I wondered who replaced his head with a balloon with his face painted on it, and then JUNE JUNE JUNE JUNE JUUUUUUUUUNNNNNNEEEE!
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 1:00 PM on June 1, 2015 [3 favorites]

So what is this from? Did they end up having to do the Tony awards out in somebody's field one year or something?
posted by Naberius at 1:20 PM on June 1, 2015 [2 favorites]

It's really rather fascinating to see thousands of people sitting there watching Leslie Uggams sing and there not being a field full of iPhones recording the event. Those people are PAYING ATTENTION TO THE WOMAN SINGING!
posted by chavenet at 1:34 PM on June 1, 2015 [2 favorites]

Naberius, it's from a concert she was doing on the mall in DC.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:58 PM on June 1, 2015 [1 favorite]

A viral video with 219,000 views! That is, indeed, a rare find.

I watched it in morbid fascination, the same way I react to all musical theater I find myself watching, as if in a nightmare. Of course I didn't notice the word-flubbing the first time through. If I'm going to have to suffer through one of those damn songs, hell if I'm going to torture myself further with listening to the idiotic lyrics.

But I have to admit, I was suckered into believing she was singing words in English the first time through. The subtitles were a revelation. This is almost like one of those auditory illusions...
posted by kozad at 2:05 PM on June 1, 2015 [1 favorite]

And leading the way still by about 30,000 in numbers of views, one of my favorite movie scenes, the performance of the song in Carousel.

Though I also admire the way Uggams pulled out the delivery of her version.
posted by bearwife at 2:11 PM on June 1, 2015

Oh, also, just to make sure we've covered all the bases, does anyone have a link to the Pseudo Echo cover?
posted by Naberius at 3:39 PM on June 1, 2015

Never seen any of this before, but now that I have, I love Leslie Uggams.
posted by freakazoid at 6:44 PM on June 1, 2015

It's a lot easier in choral groups when you're lost or forgot your part- just mouth the words "watermelon" and "strawberry" over and over, no one on the other side of the stage will need know of your shame.
posted by mcrandello at 12:04 AM on June 2, 2015

I'm mostly surprised that the vocals were live in a venue like that. I've always assumed that outdoor performances like the ones during the Macy's Day Parade, were just lip-synced to recordings.
posted by octothorpe at 4:21 AM on June 2, 2015

This reminds me:
So, you've heard it, yes, we've swung it
And we tried to, yes, we sung it
You won't recognize it, it's a surprise hit
This tune, called Mack the Knife
... Not only did she come up with words, they rhyme. Tom Lehrer couldn't have beaten "recognize it / surprise hit" with a typewriter, two days, and 750ml of bourbon.
posted by fritley at 1:55 PM on June 10, 2015

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