“Pen Pineapple Apple Pen”: The best viral music videos ever
Are you having a sucky day at work? Maybe your [boyfriend, girlfriend, 50 cats] are giving you a hard time or Linda from accounts receivable has been screwing with the dishwasher.
Whatever your life beef, it’s time to leave it at the door and turn your attention to better, lighter, and milkier themes by easing those chops with some music from Doja Cat. The R&B singer built momentum with her track “Amala” – but it’s her bizarre, surrealist video “Mooo!” that’s launched her into mainstream glory overnight.
Delivering cow-themed one-liners to an amateur R&B beat, Doja dances around in a cow costume while chowing on a Maccies in front of a very questionably edited green screen. It’s a riot, a ride, and not something you should take seriously.
“I just like to do the fun stuff. If I’m not having fun with it, I’m not going to do it for the rest of my life,” Doja told Billboard. “I just wanna bring something fun – the current climate is so uptight and serious and it’s just good to have something stupid to laugh at. It’s funny because it’s a joke, but it sounds kinda good. People listen to it like it’s a song.”
And is that not the essence of a viral vid? We’ve seen a number of music videos rise to mainstream fame seemingly overnight and every single one of them is just a bit of dumb goofball humor that’s both catchy but also a silly, light-hearted reminder that life can just be a laugh. So as you let go of your beef and get your cow on to Doja’s new tune, here are ten more of the best viral music videos ever to jam to and remind yourself not to take life so seriously.
“I’ll just explain how this video fell apart”
The music video for Young Thug’s “Wyclef Jean” became an instant sensation, but not because of the track, but more the circumstances around how it was filmed. Director Ryan Staake had to shoot the whole thing without the video’s star present, because Young Thug decided to be a diva and not even show up for filming.
At his wits end, Staake transformed his nightmarish experience into an incredible video in which he shows how their plans to film managed to crash and burn. It makes Young Thug look like a D-bag, and is coincidentally one of his most popular music videos.
Ground control to Major Tom
Shoutout to Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield for making Bowie in space a reality by sneaking his guitar out of the stratosphere and into the cosmos to perform David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” where it was always meant to be performed. Hadfield truly does Bowie proud by putting his all into the performance – it’s totally out of this world.
Proving Doja Cat’s propensity for repetitive lyrics, catchy beats, and mind-bending visuals, her video for “So High” is perfect to, well, get high to! Spark up a fatty and jam to this sleazy beat.
Pen pineapple, apple pen
It’s a minute long, makes absolutely no sense, and we’re not quite sure why it’s a thing. But it is and now it’s ingrained in pop culture having garnered more than 212 million views. And because of an imaginary pen, an imaginary pineapple, an imaginary apple, and a very real dude wearing a very questionable leopard print suit. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
One pound fish
Muhammad Shahid Nazir’s story is one of viral video legend – it started with a highly catchy song he used to sing at Queens Market in London to sell (very, very cheap) fish. Someone filmed it, it went viral, and everyone loved it. So much so that he went on to star in his very own high-production “One Pound Fish” music video (the original’s better if you ask us). And thus a star was born, and it all started with a £1 fish.
This is America
We know we said we’re looking at silly, goofball videos (this entry is sandwiched between “One Pound Fish” and the “The Guacamole Song” for crying out loud) and this is not that. But we’ll take any moment to give a nod to Childish Gambino and his epic satirical video for “This is America”, which has hit nearly 370 million views for Donald Glover’s astounding theatrical performance with a bold political message at the heart of it.
Peel the avocado
Serving hipster parents across the globe, a woman named Dr. Jean released this bizarre music video in which she encourages kids to sing and dance about a damn avocado. It’s strange, funny, and kinda unsettling.
“Here It Goes Again”
This is the video that kickstarted OK Go’s turn as the greatest music video creators of all time, and sees them performing a meticulously practiced treadmill dance. So much a success was this video and the ones that followed, the band has arguably become more famous for their videos than for their music itself – not that we’re complaining. For more incredible visuals, check out “Upside Down & Inside Out” and “This Too Shall Pass”.
He’s climbing in your window
Antoine Dodson rose to overnight fame after giving the now infamous news interview about a home intrusion, which was filled with so much theatrical vigor that The Gregory Brothers auto-tuned the passionate reaction and turned it into one of the catchiest YouTube music videos of all time. “Hide your kids, hide your wife!”