"For 35 years, “Weird Al” Yankovic has been music’s most reliable satirist, sending up the biggest pop hits and the most iconic artists for the sake of belly laughs. He’s about to release a brand new album called Mandatory Fun on July 15, so to prepare for a fresh batch of tunes we caught up with Yankovic to get the stories behind hits both big and small... “Eat It” (1984) “It was pretty obvious back then that Michael Jackson was the biggest star in the universe. Everything revolved around him. ‘Eat It’ is not that clever a variation on ‘Beat It.’ It’s probably the most obvious pun. If YouTube had existed in 1984, there would have been a million ‘Eat It’ parodies. I just gravitated toward the most obvious parody, and it seemed to work. This really was a bona fide hit. That was number one in Australia, number 12 in the States. If it hadn’t been for Michael Jackson, I don’t know that I would have a career to this day, because getting permission from him in 1984 opened a whole lot of doors for me. Prior to that, we were getting a lot of resistance and reluctance from people who were like, ‘I don’t know about this Weird Al guy and if I should let him do a parody.’ But after we were able to tell them, ‘Well, Michael Jackson didn’t seem to have a problem with it,’ they were like, ‘Well, sure! If it’s OK with Michael, it certainly should be OK with me.’ That logic seems to work."
Thursday, July 3, 2014
'Weird Al' Yankovic: The Stories Behind The Songs; Entertainment Weekly, 7/3/14
Kyle Anderson, Entertainment Weekly; 'Weird Al' Yankovic: The Stories Behind The Songs: