By Brandon Wetherbee
Brandon Wetherbee hosts the talk show/podcast You, Me, Them, Everybody the first two Friday’s of the month at the Wonderland Ballroom and in Brooklyn and Chicago once a month. Subscribe to it online at youmethemeverybody.com. He’ll be at Hostelling International for a special show on September 20 (TONIGHT!) with guests Evan Keeling from D.C. Conspiracy, stand up comedian Haywood Turnipseed Jr, a special set from Ugly Purple Sweater.
I’ve had Paula Abdul’s “Vibeology” in my head for the last five days.
Writer’s block manifests itself in different ways for different people. For me, I get a song I remember from when I was 9 years old stuck in my head, on a loop, night and day, until something good happens. More good needs to happen.
“Vibeology” was the fourth single released from Paula Abdul’s 1992 album, “Spellbound.” I did not own “Spellbound” in CD, tape or vinyl. I did not own the single “Vibeology” in CD, tape or vinyl. I think I might have owned the cassingle for “Promise of a New Day.”
The last show was 6 days ago. It feels like 6 months. It did not go well. It wasn’t my fault or the guests or the producer or the venue or the crowd. The room was full, which is great, but about half of the room didn’t really know a talk show was going to take place. Note to show producers: do not ambush the crowd. Let them know why they’re there. Fliers, posters, a sandwich board, announcements, anything that you can do to make the show seem like a show is about to happen is for the best.
Paula Abdul was a Laker Girl. Michael Jordan had a line of fruit snacks in the late 1980s. Shapes included basketball players doing layups, running, a basketball, a hoop and a cheerleader. My friends and I would all eat Michael Jordan fruit snacks at lunch. We would collect and hoard the red, cheerleader fruit snack and refer to them as ‘Paula Abduls’ because when you’re 8 and 9 years old, a four foot eleven inch dancer lady that always smiles seems super fuckable.
I put off editing the last show for two days. I didn’t want to sit through and relive mistakes over and over again. Once the process began, I realized I had blown things out of proportion. It’s not a bad show. It’s far from great but not awful. The guests were very good and the comedic portions did get laughs. Though this should have made me feel better, I just went further into my Paula Abdul scored hatred of self.
There are 18 official mixes of “Vibeology” but only 10 for her much bigger hit “Opposites Attract,” made famous because of a dance Abdul performs with MC Skat Kat. Isn’t that funny and cute? A dancing cat! Who would have thought! Also, it’s the first number #1 single in America to feature a rap verse by an African American. That’s right, the first chart topper to have rap by an African American was only #1 because it was a cartoon cat.
The next show is in five days. It’ll be at the hostel at 11th and K NW in Shaw. An odd venue and an odd location. It’s going to be a good show. It has to be a good show if we want to have any more there and I already want to do more there. There’s no reason the talk show can only exists in bars. I’ve been worrying about this for weeks. Then Paula snuck in.
The part of “Vibeology” that has been stuck on loop is the pre-chorus, the part where she spells out the name of the song. The weird thing is what’s in my head sounds nothing like the actual song. I’ve been able to completely omit the cringe inducing music and replace it with cringe inducing music that sounds like Prince made it that same year. I didn’t remember the weird opera type thing until today. The point is, this song is the audio equivalent of “The Arsenio Hall Show.”
“Vibeology” will soon leave my head. The show will have come and gone from a new venue. Everything will be fine. It’s either that or I get stuck in a 1990 time warp and become a karaoke devotee, loyal to “Straight Up” and drinking until I shake like Ms. Abdul.
Thanks for reading and have a wonderful night.