Looking Glass Language

a word bird reflects on life & language

Jimmy Fallon mondegreen

Courtesy of the Tonight Show

Courtesy of Late Night Live

I like Jimmy Fallon, I really do, and I think Late Night Live has flashes of brilliance, but as far as mondegreens go, he ain’t no Peter Kay…

Jimmy references some really funny mondegreens, such as the lyrics of Elton John’s Tiny Dancer misheard as “Hold me close and tie me down, sir,” and Michael Jackson’s Wanna be startin’ something misheard as “I’m ashamed of the side of my moccasins; I’m ashamed of the side of my moccasins,” (try singing it). But at times it was hard to know which song he was referring to, even though he had the benefit of a twitter storm to pull his mondegreens from and a criminally under-used house band in the studio (what were they there for, if not to help us work out which song the misheard lyrics came from?). One fail, for me at least, was “Hit me with your pet shark,” – does anyone know what song that’s supposed to be from? Anyone?

Peter Kay, however, uses his ungainly bulk, his broad Manchester accent and some fabulous lip-synching to such great effect that I guarantee half a dozen of your favourite songs will never sound the same again…

(WARNING: please don’t watch the video if you, your Grandma and your 10-year old niece Brittany like to sing along to Sister Sledge’s We are family at family get togethers: it could get embarrassing.)

If you still haven’t had your fill of mondegreens, check out this video, which features 30 mondegreens in four minutes: it contains a few fails but it’s worth hanging on in there if only to find out who sings ‘My little early birdie gave my anus curly-wurly’…

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