Hooked On Lyrics II

Nov 20, 2020

Late Night with Seth Meyers' Karen Chee returns to Ask Me Another with illustrator Jonny Sun to identify songs lyrics read by kids born after the songs were released. It's like an audio version of those "Wanna Feel Old?" articles!

Heard on Rachel Bloom: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Sane Current Guest.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.


Our next two contestants are on the line. Karen Chee is a comedy writer who appears on "Late Night With Seth Meyers," and she's a former ASK ME ANOTHER contestant back from our Bell House days. Her friend Jonny Sun is a writer and illustrator who's all over Twitter. Karen, Jonny - hello.

JONNY SUN: Whoa. Hi.

KAREN CHEE: Hi (laughter).

EISENBERG: So I was just thinking about this. I couldn't put it together. How do you two know each other?

SUN: Do you wanna go, Karen?

CHEE: We know each other - yeah, we know each other from the Internet, initially. And then, obviously, we've met in person since.


CHEE: I guess it's not obvious. We've met in person since.



CHEE: And then Jonny and I also - we, like, worked on - we made, like, a New Yorker piece together. And then I don't know how - at some point, I was like, Jonny is one of my very close friends.


CHEE: And I think it just happened in my brain without me realizing. But we've never looked back.

SUN: Yeah.

EISENBERG: So, Karen, you have been on the show before as a contestant live at the Bell House.

CHEE: Yeah, that was so fun.

EISENBERG: Thank you for coming back in this iteration.

CHEE: Oh, my gosh. I'm so excited. Thank you.

EISENBERG: And I know that you've been writing and performing on "Late Night With Seth Meyers." How's it going - like, now?

CHEE: Right now? It's going great.

EISENBERG: In this time. In this time (laughter).

CHEE: I think we're - (laughter) I mean, definitely very different during the pandemic...


CHEE: ...Because we're all working from home. But especially great right now, right after the election, because I feel like we all - we all now feel like it's not as daunting or heavy-handed doing political satire. We're all very stoked to be doing other kinds of comedy in addition to that, yeah.


EISENBERG: The world has opened up comedywise.

CHEE: Yeah, I know.

EISENBERG: You're like, wait a second.


JONATHAN COULTON, BYLINE: We just do jokes about airplane food again.

EISENBERG: Yeah, exactly.

COULTON: What a relief.

EISENBERG: We don't have to...

CHEE: It's all about dogs.

COULTON: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: And, Jonny, you have a new book coming out, which is amazing to have - you've obviously been writing. You have a new book...

SUN: (Laughter) Yeah.

EISENBERG: ...Called "Goodbye, Again."

SUN: That's right. It's a collection of essays and illustrations. I've been working on it for three years. It's about, like, loneliness and saying goodbye to places that you remembered, which I finished, like, the first draft before the pandemic started. I've been trying to, like, write from a position of, like, not having any answers because I feel like I don't know. So I'm writing from a position of, like, trying to sort through that stuff as opposed to just being like, here are the three things you should do to fight loneliness. Like, I feel like that - maybe if I just write about my feelings and how I'm trying to work through it, that might help.

EISENBERG: So what are - so, yeah, just to give us a quick summary. So what are the three ways to combat...


EISENBERG: So where are you coming to us today from, Karen? Are you in New York?

CHEE: No, I'm actually in South Korea right now.


CHEE: Yeah, I'm living with my grandparents at the moment. I'm sort of helping take care of my grandma and where - I'm very close with my grandparents to begin with, and so I flew out here a few months ago. And yeah, I've been posting it up with them.

EISENBERG: So wait a second. What time is it?

CHEE: It's 5:47 a.m. But I...

EISENBERG: Oh, my goodness. Thank you.

COULTON: Oh, my goodness, Karen.


CHEE: No, no. No problem. Oh, my gosh. Thank you for having me. Are you kidding? I would do this at any time of day.

EISENBERG: Challenge accepted.

CHEE: Yeah.


CHEE: Do it every night.


EISENBERG: All right. Well, you know, because I have Karen up at 5:30 in the morning, let's get to some games.

SUN: Let's do it.

EISENBERG: So our first game, you're going to be competing against each other. Karen is old hat to this, by the way, OK? I'm just warning you, Jonny.


SUN: Right. OK.

EISENBERG: She has been on the show. She has championed before.

SUN: Got the advantage, home team advantage.

EISENBERG: But so you're going to be - you'll take turns answering questions. This is one of our favorite games. It's called Hooked On Lyrics. So what we have done here - you know, a lot of kids are bored right now, so we are using them to voice a lot of our games.


EISENBERG: That's what we're doing. So you're going to hear a child cold-reading lyrics to a popular song that came out, like, way before they were born.

SUN: Great.

CHEE: Awesome.

EISENBERG: And then you just have to tell us the name of the song or the artist who made it famous.

SUN: Perfect.


EISENBERG: Here we go. Karen.

CHEE: Yes?

EISENBERG: This first clue is for you.

CHEE: Ooh.

JOSIE: Hi, I'm Josie (ph). I'm 11, and I'm from Pennsylvania.

It's Friday night, and I feel all right. The party's here on the West side. So I reach for my 40 and I turn it up. Designated driver, take the keys to my truck. Hit the shore because I'm faded. Honey in the streets say, Monty, yo, we made it.

COULTON: (Laughter).

CHEE: OK. So Monty...

EISENBERG: Monty. Monty.

CHEE: ...Is the person singing, yes?

EISENBERG: Yeah, yeah. Monty is short for the artist's first name.

CHEE: Montgomery.

EISENBERG: Oh you're so - I love that you did that. That is the most...

CHEE: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: ...Academic form of what it could be short for.


EISENBERG: You have 1995.

CHEE: Oh, that's the year I was born.


EISENBERG: We could almost have had you do this game.


CHEE: Wait. Jonny, do you know? Can you whisper it to me?

SUN: I do not know.



SUN: I was only 5 when this song came out, so...

EISENBERG: All right. We've got it. We've got it.


COULTON: You guys are young. We understand.

EISENBERG: OK, so Monty is short for Montell Jordan.


EISENBERG: And the song is (singing) "This Is How We Do It."

CHEE: Oh, yes. I absolutely recognize that.

COULTON: All right, Jonny. Here is one for you.

SUN: All right.

MOLLY: Hello, my name is Molly. I'm 9 years old, and I'm from Brooklyn, N.Y.

I can't stand it. I know you planned it. I'mma (ph) set it straight, this is Watergate. I can't stand rockin', but I'm in here 'cause your crystal ball ain't so crystal clear.


SUN: Oh, my God. Oh, that's - oh, Beastie Boys.

COULTON: Beastie Boys. That is correct.

SUN: Beastie Boys. Oh, yeah. (Rapping) I can't stand it. I know you planned it. (Vocalizing).

COULTON: Yeah. Yeah, that's it.

CHEE: (Laughter).

COULTON: "Sabotage."

EISENBERG: Yeah, yeah, yeah. All right, Karen, this one is for you.

NORA: Hi, I'm Nora (ph). I'm 12 years old.

We don't need no education. We don't need no thought control, no dark sarcasm in the classroom. Teacher, leave them kids alone. Hey, teacher, leave them kids alone.

CHEE: So I definitely know this song. I don't know if I know the title of it. It's like...


CHEE: (Singing) We don't need no - yeah, yeah, yeah. OK, great.

EISENBERG: Keep going. Keep going.

CHEE: That's actually the only lyric I know.


CHEE: Well now, in addition to what she just said.

EISENBERG: Do you know after - (singing) hey, teacher, leave those kids alone. And then the next part of it - (vocalizing) all in all, it's just a...

CHEE: A good day.


EISENBERG: Pink Floyd, "Another Brick In The Wall."

CHEE: Oh, nice. OK.


COULTON: All right, Jonny. This is your final clue.


MADDIE: Hello. My name's Maddie (ph), and I'm 8 years old.

He was a boy. She was a girl. Can I make it more obvious? He was a punk. She did ballet. What more can I say?

CHEE: What?

EISENBERG: (Laughter).

CHEE: Why didn't I get this one?

SUN: I will pass on the question to you.


CHEE: This is so nice - "Sk8r Boy" by Avril Lavigne.

SUN: Avril Lavigne.

COULTON: Yeah. That is it.

EISENBERG: Right, yeah.

CHEE: Wow. I just fully mispronounced her name.


CHEE: I, like, saw it in my head.

COULTON: We're going to give you the point anyway.

CHEE: I'm now wondering if I've ever said that name aloud.

COULTON: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: Yeah. I feel like you said it the Quebecois way that it was intended.

COULTON: Yeah, you said it the French way.


SUN: Avril Lavigne.

EISENBERG: There you go.

CHEE: Avril Montgomery Lavigne. Yeah.

EISENBERG: Avril Montgomery.

SUN: "This Is How We Do It" by Montgomery Covington III.


SUN: "This Is How We Do It" - it would be more mansplainy then. It would not be as fun if it was by Montgomery.


EISENBERG: OK, that was amazing. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.