The 10 Best Weird Al Original Songs

Tonight I see @alyankovic in concert for the first time. A lifelong dream is coming true. To commemorate this event, I'm going to point out some of Al's greatest accomplishments - his original songs. Songs the parody the style of famous musicians, rather than specific songs. The songs that prove the man is a musical genius.
  1. 10.
    Trigger Happy
    This awfully prescient ode to America's obsession with firearms feels like it could have been written yesterday. It's more sad than funny - I imagine it was funny once, but, y'know. Still, it's a great piece of satire, and the Beach Boys sound is a perfect cheery counterpoint to the dark subject matter. https://youtu.be/rN6avab0fIY
  2. 9.
    Truck Drivin' Song
    In the '70s, America romanticized the trucker. We got trucker movies, trucker merchandise, and even trucker songs. This is just like one of those songs, except in this one, the trucker is a cross-dresser. The song doesn't poke fun or judge - it's a celebration of cross-dressing, if anything. It's also awfully catchy. https://youtu.be/uCno1HSNUnE
  3. 8.
    Ringtone
    If you look at the single artwork, "Ringtone" is, presumably, a style parody of Queen. And it is, especially during the intro, chorus, and instrumental portions. But there's a hefty dose of ELO in the verses as well. The subject matter has aged a bit - when was the last time you heard a cell phone ring, apart from in a movie theater? - but there's some really great musical stuff going on here. https://youtu.be/a_c4aeVmND0
  4. 7.
    Everything You Know is Wrong
    Weird Al takes on They Might Be Giants. Truly, the "Scary Movie"-parodying-"Scream" of its day. "Everything You Know is Wrong" is pure absurdism from start to finish, which is what TMBG traffics in best. More than any other song on this list, "EYKIW" could easily pass for the thing it's parodying with zero changes. https://youtu.be/KThlYHfIVa8
  5. 6.
    Good Old Days
    My mother's favorite singer is James Taylor. Growing up, she played his music constantly. He was my first rock concert, if you'd venture to call it such a thing. This is why I'm so impressed with the details in "Good Old Days," Al's take on the Walking Man. There's a chord transition - you know it when you hear it - that says everything you'll ever need to know about James Taylor's music. It's genius, is what it is. And so, so funny. https://youtu.be/ceVXIs7Ihyw
  6. 5.
    One More Minute
    One of the rare Weird Al originals released as a single, "One More Minute" is more a genre parody, tackling doo-wop and its conventions in one fell swoop. The comedic take is pretty simple - instead of singing about how much he loves someone, he sings about how much he can't stand them - but it's executed perfectly. Plus, it includes Al's one-and-only masturbation joke! https://youtu.be/yWhpk-8QLFQ
  7. 4.
    CNR
    In 2011, Weird Al released a music video for "CNR," a White Stripes pastiche that was an ode to America's #1 badass - Charles Nelson Reilly. Now, I'm not sure how much of Weird Al's presumably young audience knows who Charles Nelson Reilly is, nor do I care. This song is pure silliness, and I adore it. https://youtu.be/xLnapb-30hA
  8. 3.
    Skipper Dan
    The all-knowing Internet swears "Skipper Dan" is a Weezer style parody. And I guess I kind of hear it (in the intro especially), but then, I also think it's better than any song Weezer has ever released? Regardless of its origins, "Skipper Dan" is a perfect song, balancing cheer and existential darkness perfectly. And the hook is FANTASTIC. https://youtu.be/a0cCRRFi1aA
  9. 2.
    Pancreas
    Easily the most musically complex and impressive entry on the list, "Pancreas" is a pitch-perfect Brian Wilson parody. It's also a factually accurate ode to the pancreas. And, as someone who wrote his own pancreas song in the fifth grade to help study for a science test, it holds a special place in my...let's say gallbladder. https://youtu.be/tqDBB0no6dQ
  10. 1.
    Frank's 2000-Inch TV
    I'll just go right ahead and say it - this song is gorgeous. There are production choices here that are truly beautiful. Meant to sound like R.E.M.'s output at the time, "Frank's 2000-Inch TV" tops this list by being just a great fucking song. The breakdown near the end is chill-inducing. I love it so much. https://youtu.be/glFVXpz_abQ