Gump (song)

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"Gump"
Weirdalgump.jpg
Single by "Weird Al" Yankovic
from the album Bad Hair Day
B-side "Spy Hard (Theme from the Motion Picture Spy Hard)", "Since You've Been Gone"
Released May 7, 1996
Format CD, cassette
Recorded January 3, 1996 at Santa Monica Sound Recorders, Santa Monica, California[1]
Length 2:10
Label Scotti Brothers
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s) "Weird Al" Yankovic
"Weird Al" Yankovic singles chronology
"Amish Paradise"
(1996)
"Gump"
(1996)
"Spy Hard"
(1996)

"Amish Paradise"
(1996)
"Gump"
(1996)
"Spy Hard"
(1996)
Alternative cover
Promo CD single cover
Promo CD single cover
Bad Hair Day track listing
  1. "Amish Paradise"
  2. "Everything You Know Is Wrong"
  3. "Cavity Search"
  4. "Callin' in Sick"
  5. "The Alternative Polka"
  6. "Since You've Been Gone"
  7. "Gump"
  8. "I'm So Sick of You"
  9. "Syndicated Inc."
  10. "I Remember Larry"
  11. "Phony Calls"
  12. "The Night Santa Went Crazy"

"Gump" is a song by American musical parodist "Weird Al" Yankovic. It is a parody of "Lump" by alternative rock group The Presidents of the United States of America and also parodies the 1994 movie Forrest Gump. It is one of several Yankovic songs describing the events of a movie, such as "Jurassic Park" and "The Saga Begins" (and currently the only one parodied from a then-recent song).

The cover for the single is itself a parody of the Presidents of the United States of America's logo. This is one of Yankovic's shortest album parodies, second only to his remade version of "My Bologna" (a parody of The Knack's "My Sharona"). In the video for this song, Yankovic dons a bald cap. The Presidents of the United States of America themselves praised the parody and has since often referred to the "Weird Al" song during live performances.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Gump" – 2:10
  2. "Spy Hard" – 2:49
  3. "Since You've Been Gone" – 1:22
  4. "Since You've Been Gone" (Karaoke Version) – 1:22
  5. "Callin' in Sick" (Instrumental) – 3:40
  6. "Spy Hard" (Instrumental) – 2:49
  7. "Spy Hard" (Orchestral Mix) – 2:49

Production[edit]

The song was recorded on January 3, 1996 at Santa Monica Sound Recorders, in Santa Monica, California. Before "Gump" was officially released, Yankovic played a rough version of the song for the Presidents of the United States of America on their tour bus. This marks the first time that Al was able to "see a band's reaction when they heard their parody for the first time."[1] PUSA frontman Chris Ballew said he first heard Yankovic was doing his song on television, and later became friends with the parodist. Yankovic even directed a music video for the band's song "Mixed Up S.O.B." in 2008, and has joined them on stage a few times.[2]

Music video[edit]

The music video for "Gump" is a double parody of both the movie Forrest Gump and the Presidents of the United States of America's music video for "Lump". The single's cover art is directly taken from the video shoot.

  • The video begins with a feather blowing through the air, much like the beginning of the original movie.
  • Andy Comeau appears as the titular character, Forrest Gump.
  • Yankovic appears as Chris Ballew, complete with bald head.
  • Jon "Bermuda" Schwartz appears as Jason Finn, and Steve Jay appears as Dave Dederer. Yankovic has stated that originally his guitarist, Jim West, was supposed to play the part of Dederer, but his hair was too long. Jay later filled in.[3]
  • Throughout the video Forrest offers different people chocolates. He first offers Gladys Ormphby (Ruth Buzzi's Laugh-In character) some chocolates and she hits him with her purse. The second offer is to large, strong man Henry Reichenbach which results in Gump being spun around by his head. He then offers Pat Boone some chocolates. Boone greedily devours most of the box.[4]
  • The instruments used in the song are over-simplified as a parody of the Presidents of the United States of America's actual instruments (a basitar, or 2 stringed guitar for bass, and a guitbass, which is a 3 stringed guitar). Al uses a one stringed bass in the video, while the guitarist uses a two stringed "guitar".
  • In the instrumential break of the song, it shows Forrest running (a parody of the scene where Forrest runs all around the country) across the street, in a horse race, and outer space. As he runs in the street again, he suddenly bumps into a pole and falls down to the ground, as the song says, "Run...stop!"
  • As mentioned before, half of the music video is also a parody of the "Lump" music video: Instead of singing in a bog/marsh, Al and his band are dancing in the water fountain in the middle of the park. The silhouette scene in the "Lump" music video is also parodied, with Al and his band making hand shadows against the background.
  • At 1:04, during the silhouette scenes, Yankovic can be seen bending his guitar. This is similar to the videos for "Smells Like Nirvana" and "Money for Nothing/Beverly Hillbillies*."
  • Gump is digitally edited into existing footage tapping John F. Kennedy on the shoulder, standing behind Richard Nixon and waving to the camera, and roasting hot dogs at an atomic bomb drop, just like the movie which edited Gump into several newsreels so he appeared to be interacting with historical figures.
  • The song ends with, "And that's all I have to say about that", which is the way Forrest Gump often ends his stories. Afterwards, the Presidents of the United States of America followed Weird Al's example and ended performances of "Lump" with that quote and they still continue to do so.

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1996) Peak
Position
U.S. Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles 2

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Yankovic, Alfred (2013), "Gump", 'Weird Al' Yankovic Official Limited Edition Trading Cards, Volcano Records (58) 
  2. ^ Ballew, Chris (April 9, 2013). "Interview with Chris Ballew of The Presidents of the United States of America". NoiseTrade (Interview). Interviewed by Will Hodge. Retrieved May 26, 2018. NT: In my personal opinion, one of the coolest “made it” moments a musician can experience is having Weird Al Yankovic parody one of your songs. Can you describe what it was like when you first learned he was going to transform “Lump” into “Gump”? Chris: I think I learned about it when I saw it on the actual television! I don’t remember being aware of it before it happened. But it is an incredible experience to see Weird Al pretend to be me! The best thing that’s come out of that is that we are still friends. He’s a great guy and a really good listener and storyteller. He actually ended up directing a video for us from our 2008 album These Are The Good Times People. We also have had him as a guest in Los Angeles a few times at our live shows. He’s a sweet guy and an incredibly talented human. 
  3. ^ Ask Al: Sept/Oct 1996 Archived 2001-06-26 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ "Video Facts". WeirdAl.com. Retrieved May 25, 2018. 

External links[edit]