There’s only two posts in me and I just wrote the third.
Who let the country in here, brother?
The twangy country folk feeling that the acoustic guitar and harmonized vocals provide in Number Three is contrasted incredibly by a deep low horn in an almost polka-esque honking. It is a song about how this song is the third song on the album and that the first two songs were kind of all this musician could manage to create musically. Where did this third song come from? How did he manage to pull off writing this, a third song about being the third song? Exactly the kind of thing that spoke to teenage me. Commenting on itself, the meta-narration of it all. It’s too smart for its own good and although it wasn’t nearly the first (or third) song I heard from They Might Be Giants, it all but sealed the lid on the coffin of my fandom.
Buy yourself some denim pants and a silver guitar. Or just subscribe.
Does that make it sound as though it ruined my fandom? It sealed it. I was more in than ever. Don’t let the humorous nature of this track fool you. It is not a mere joke song. Track 1 (read about it here) and track 2 (right here) were featuring John Linnell and John Flansburgh separately. This song gives you a sneak peek into something special. The harmony of the Johns.
My oldest son went to school for music. One night, as we were sharing new things that we’ve been listening to, he brought up an interesting topic. Who are two vocalists in a band that are iconic and unmistakable? His first easy example is John and Paul of The Beatles. How about Serj and Daron of System of a Down? Also, undeniably, John and John of TMBG. Number Three gives us that first taste. Something any fan will immediately recognize; the Johns harmonizing their sarcasm in that perfect blend of falsetto meets hypernasality. A sound that I love that is also something my junior high choir instructor once said is exactly the sort of thing we would never cover for a school concert. What a full-blown donk.
Are there ANY other songs like this? I’ll blindly assume that the answer is No. Which by default makes this the world’s greatest song about being a specific numbered song on an album. Congrats, gang!