Who knew the Bohemian Rhapsody too would get a dab of the Coronavirus taint, I mean paint! Blame it on the lockdown that has given birth to a new breed of, no, not viruses, but viral funnies. And the ‘greatest rock song of all time’, written by Freddie Mercury, seems to be the most popular pick for pandemic parodies.
One must admit, most of the parodies of the number (and there are a rash of them on YouTube) are genuinely funny and enjoyable. Many of these attempts have clocked up views of more than five million in a matter of weeks — which goes to show just how much the whole world is “swimming in feels” about the virus, to use Instagram slang. Credit is perhaps due to the droll lyrics attributed to Dana Jay Bein; it is the clever writing that has made the song instantly identifiable by millions. Sample this beginning: Is this a sore throat/Is this just allergies/Caught in a lockdown/ No escape from reality... I look out of the window/Curve just doesn’t look flatter to me.
If we have to recommend one parody, go for the video created by the Phoenix Chamber Choir. It has the right mix of earnest seriousness and dry wit with all the singers managing to keep that ‘resigned to fate’ expression throughout.
Play By Ear showcases a potential earworm every week for you, the discerning listener, who is on the hunt for some musical serendipity.