Song of the Day #1,630: ‘Labrador’ – Aimee Mann

aimee_mann_charmerTop Songs of 2012 – #7

Anyone familiar with Aimee Mann’s discography would be unlikely to cite her sense of humor as a standout attribute. She writes melancholy songs about people at the end of their ropes. That’s what she’s always done and probably what she’ll always do.

Sometimes she wraps that sadness in a pretty pop sheen, as she did on her most recent release, Charmer. This album is poppier than anything Mann has released in years, and it’s a refreshing change of pace. The album features slick production, bright instrumentation and catchy melodies, all in the service of the same Aimee Mann worldview.

I mention her sense of humor, though, because apart from her actual music, Mann is a barrel of laughs. For several years she has hosted a Christmas/variety show complete with roles for A-list comedians. A preview video for that show featured skits with Will Ferrell, Ben Stiller, Zach Galifinakis and Patton Oswalt. She played herself moonlighting as a housekeeper on the show Portlandia. Hell, she even had a small part in The Big Lebowski.

And Mann has released her share of funny videos (including one for Charmer‘s title track in which Laura Linney played a robot version of Mann who tried to take over her career).

The video for today’s SOTD, ‘Labrador,’ is a shot-by-shot recreation of the Til Tuesday video for ‘Voices Carry.’ You know, the one where a spiky-haired Mann stands up in a crowded theater at the end and belts out the song to the dismay of the audience and her controlling boyfriend?

Jon Hamm has a cameo at the beginning as the video’s director, and Superchunk drummer Jon Wurster hams it up as the boyfriend (though if you watch the original, you’ll realize Wurster is no more over-the-top than the original beau).

‘Labrador’ was an instant favorite from Charmer. Both its verses and chorus are instantly infectious, and the canine analogy is very well-crafted.

Daisy, you
Shouldn’t do the things you do
But you’re just
So incapable of changing
You lie so well
I could never even tell
What were facts
In your artful rearranging

But I came back for more
And you laughed in my face and you rubbed it in
‘Cause I’m a Labrador
And I run when the gun drops the dove again

When we first met
I was glad to be your pet
Like a Lab
I once had that we called Maisie
But fetching sticks
Was the best I had for tricks
You got bored
You got mad, then you got crazy

But I came back for more
And you laughed in my face and you rubbed it in
‘Cause I’m a Labrador
And I run when the gun drops the dove again

Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer
Daisy, Daisy, do
Remember good old Maisie, how she waited at the stairs for you

Daisy, dear
I could almost shed a tear
But let’s shine
In the time we have remaining
You’re a tough old gal
But a dog is just a pal
And believe
Me, my dear, I’m not complaining

‘Cause I came back for more
‘Cause I knew even you did the best you could
And I’m a Labrador
And with me you could see it was understood
That I’d come back for more
Daisy, Daisy, do
‘Cause I’m a Labrador

Yeah, I’d come back for more
The loyal Labrador
Do do do do do do do


2 thoughts on “Song of the Day #1,630: ‘Labrador’ – Aimee Mann

  1. Dana says:

    Very funny video and good song as well. Is it just me, or is Mann sexier now than she was 25 years ago?

  2. Amy says:

    I remember so little of the original video, but I do enjoy the song and the making of interviews 🙂

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