Michael McDonald is something of a divisive character. I’m going to come right up front and say I love the guy. I love his voice, I love his distinctive greying mop and beard combo, and the sheer iconic quality of the man. There are a few other things I’m less keen on, but we’ll get to that later in this new regular/occasional/one-off series, The Adventures of Michael McDonald.
In old Americay, he’s certainly something of a cultural touchstone and it occurred to me recently that barely a week goes by when I’m not made aware of some bit of Mick McD spoofery or homagery. Maybe it’s to do with his ubiquity as a distinctive backing vocalist of 99% of all songs made between 1978 and 1982. Maybe it’s the fact that it’s hard to say his name without wanting to put “Grammy Award winning artist” in front. There are a million reasons to love Michael McDonald, so it’s hard to pick.
And so to our first adventure. The first time I remember coming across the world’s favourite Doobie Brother (sorry Patrick Simmons, but c’mon you must know by now) outside of his natural environment was as a concert DVD looped in the electronics store where Steve Carell works in The 40 Year Old Virgin. It would appear that Judd Apatow isn’t much of a fan though, as it’s the musical choice of the masculine, sexually aggressive manager, a move which drive’s Paul Rudd’s character Dave to the brink of insanity, claiming “If I have to hear ‘Yah Mo B There’ one more time, I’m going to ‘Yah Mo’ burn this place to the ground!”
Apparently, MMcD “hit back” at this at a concert, according to this poorly written piece. Although it’s clear that he took it in good humour, because that’s the kind of stand-up guy he is. The very fact that a piece of Michael McDonald stage banter makes news in this decade blows my mind.
Next time on The Adventures of Michael McDonald: Rick Moranis enters the fray!