Shame That Tune

Here’s my first attempt at writing a theme song for my new game show, “Shame That Tune“, which debuts on Friday June 11th, at the Hideout, here in Chicago USA.  The concept of the show, which will be co-hosted by the irrepressible Brian Costello, is as follows: Three contestants, one by one, tell a quick, embarrassing story from their past.  Before telling the story, they spin the Shame That Tune wheel, which looks like the Wheel of Fortune wheel, except that its various “slices” are made up of musical sub-genres (e.g., Lady Gaga, Dylan in the 80’s, U2 as interpreted by Gwar, etc.).  After they tell their tale, Brian conducts a brief interview with them — exactly five minutes in length, counted down by a real LED clock — while I write a song about their story, in the style indicated by their spin of the wheel.  When the timer gets to zero, I have to perform whatever it is that I’ve got.  At the end of the show, after all three contestants have run the gauntlet, and after a few other assorted skits and bits of mayhem have occurred, the audience votes, via applause, as to which story/song collaboration proved most successful.

With this theme song, I was trying to explain the rules of the game, while also tipping my hat to a few of my favorite theme songs (All in the Family, the Muppet Show, etc.).  I also wanted to limit myself to piano and two vocals (Brian’s and mine), since that’s how we may very well perform it at the show’s debut.  Which, by the way, is Friday, June 11th, at the Hideout.

Let me know what you think.  Did I overdo it on the square/vanilla side?  Or is this just what the doctor ordered?

7 Responses to “Shame That Tune”
  1. You can never overdo the corniness on a game show theme song, I don’t think. Plus, it succinctly recounts the format of the show. Pretty slick. Me, I’m reminded of “Denmark Street” by the Kinks. I think your theme song here could definitely use some strummy-style banjo.

  2. Abraham says:

    Thanks P M S. Haven’t heard “Denmark Street” but will check it out. The banjo idea is awesome.

  3. Pearl Man says:

    It is JUST what the doctor ordered! It is already a tune that I want permanently in my head!!

  4. Will says:

    Overdo the squareness? YESSS!!! But, that’s the point isn’t it? This is the PERFECT theme song!!! (think the Perfect Strangers intro—I see you catching the contestants in yer arms) As for the vanilla aspect, well, that’s too political for a theme song. Don’t over think this. It’s all about SPIRIT!, and this encaptures that perfectly. My suggestion: sing it with a smirk! BTW, I think Pancake Masters call on ‘Denmark Street” is right on! That’s my FAVORITE KINKS ALBUM! Can’t wait to see it live! You got a month to figure it out, yo…

  5. Abraham says:

    Thanks P M and Will! I feel very validated by your enthusiasm, since I wasn’t sure about this one. The Kinks comparisons are quite flattering, since that’s a buncha boys who knew how to have their own smirky way with the square-and-vanilla genre. I can’t locate Denmark Street though…. curious to hear it.

  6. “Denmark Street” is track 4 on LOLA VERSUS POWERMAN AND THE MONEY-GO-ROUND (1970) for easier reference. There’s a part around 1:08 in the song that particularly shares a certain something with your theme song.

  7. Abraham says:

    Thank you my friend — I shall be on the lookout!

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