My 10 favorite geeky things of 2014 #5: Weird Al Yankovic’s Mandatory Fun

funA new Weird Al album is always a cause for extreme nerd celebration, especially in my life.  I’ve been following him ever since buying his “Even Worse” cassette that was positioned next to Michael Jackson’s “Bad” album in the store in the 80s.  I’ve seen his movie UHF more times than I can count, I have every single song he’s ever released (or sneak-released) on my MP3 player, I’ve seen him in concert, and I look up to him the way a lot of folks in today’s jaded and cynical world do.  He’s just a nice guy who likes making people laugh through funny, largely inoffensive songs.

And it was both mind-blowing and exciting to me that his 14th album in a career that spans back into the early 80s became his very first Billboard #1 album in the US.  The guy is 55 years old and he’s now at the height of his game.  That was a win for geeks everywhere, I felt.

Weird Al didn’t skimp with Mandatory Fun’s release, either.  He made and released eight music videos over eight days to celebrate the launch, and they were pretty much all great.  My personal favorites were Tacky (with all of the celebs) and the grammar-slamming Word Crimes, although I do like the album as a whole.

Yankovic says that this might be his last traditional studio release, but I’m okay with that if he does go forward with releasing singles here and there.  The wait between albums was too much and the music industry does move too quickly these days.

So out of all of the music I listened to this year, this release was definitely the highlight for me.  I think I didn’t shut up about it to my wife in the days surrounding it.

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