Wednesday, March 30, 2016

A They Might Be Giants Top 10 Factual Countdown

1. Both John's have released their own non-TMBG albums; and they're pretty good: They Might Be Giant's (TMBG) two original members are John Flansburgh and John Linnell. Their side projects have included an album called "State Songs" (John L. - here's a fan video of "Maine"). Mono Puff is John F.'s (Flans, Flansy) band - check out the album "Unsupervised,"  including the song "I hit my head".
2. John Linnell was voted the 9th most beautiful person by People Magazine online voters: This is on his Wikipedia page but bears noting: in a People magazine online poll "The Most Beautiful People of 1998" – John Linnell finished ninth. He used this incident as a chance to write an opp ed about online voting in which he notes, "(i)f my experience is any guide, though, it appears there are still a few bugs to be worked out before you'll be able to elect the next President while sitting at home in your underwear."

3. Prolific and with staying power: TMBG has created 19 studio albums in the past 34 years, but the full discography is over 40.
4. Opening bands: Some of the more famous opening bands for TMBG have included OK Go and Jonathan Coulton.
5. Fun for the whole family: They Might Be Giant released "No!" in 2002, an album aimed at kids. After that, they played a number of all-ages concerts and released a "Here Come..." series over the next few years:
- "Here Come the ABCs"
- "Here Come the 123s"
- "Here Comes Science"
On the "Here Come's Science" album, there is a cover song from the 1950s called "Why Does The Sun Shine" - which it turned out contained a number of inaccuracies. They released a follow-up correction song and called it "Why does the sun really shine?"
They released another family friendly album in late 2015 called "Why?".
6. But some of their stuff is not suitable for children: The album after "Here Come's Science" was a decidedly adult affair. "Join Us" featured a monster truck style hearse on the cover and had songs with names like "Old Pine Box" and "When Will You Die". In a countdown of top 10 They Might Be Giants songs on StereoGum, the first track, "Can't Keep Johnny Down", was noted as “... fucking grim. It shouldn’t work as a fast power-pop song.”

7. They collapsed a stage in 1992 while playing polka music in Wisconsin: Here is audio of the event. And here is an article about the theater it happened at which just went through a multi-year renovation:
Modjeska Theatre in Milwaukee, WI.
8. They covered "Bills, Bills, Bills": They have participated twice in the AV Club’s Underground concert series, where bands come in and must choose from a list of songs to cover. Here are links to their versions of Destiny's Child's "Bills, Bills, Bills" and Chumbawumba's "Tubthumping".
And here is a link to another band covering them.
9. Did you know The Daily Show W/ John Steward theme song is called “Dog on Fire”: and oh yea, was performed by TMBG (written by Bob Mould).
10. You can download their March 2016 album Phone Power for free: Totally. Go here and “pay what you want” - It is set up for “pay what we want” ($9) but $0 is completely acceptable amount of dollars to pay for the download.
BONUS! The end of the tour?? In 2016 during what was said to be their final tour for a while (possibly until 2018), they sold out most if not all of their venues. In Denver, CO, they sold out their first venue and moved to a second larger location, before having to cancel due to a March snowstorm. That concert was rescheduled for July.
Here they are playing their first of two encores in Milwaukee:


And the band handing out stickers after the concert:


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