Ask Me Another
11:20 am
Thu March 13, 2014

The News, According To Huey Lewis

Originally published on Thu October 16, 2014 8:38 am

Ask Me Another: it's strong and it's sudden and it's cruel sometimes, but it might just save your life. Jonathan Coulton twists Huey Lewis & the News' "The Power of Love," into a game about the 1980s.

Heard in Episode 311: Puzzlin' On The Dock of the Bay

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

Let's welcome back our puzzle guru Art Chung and our next two contestants Jocelyn Draw and Karen Sulkis.

(APPLAUSE)

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

If you could bring back one thing from the '80s, what would you bring back? Karen?

KAREN SULKIS: I would bring back discovering bands on the radio and then going to see them live.

EISENBERG: Yeah. That's nice.

SULKIS: And that was the only way you could see them or hear them or be their friends.

EISENBERG: Yeah. Because you said that, yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

SULKIS: Because you weren't really there friends.

EISENBERG: I'm pretty sure every public radio station after this heirs, will isolate that clip and play it as a promo, so thank you for that.

SULKIS: You're welcome.

EISENBERG: Jocelyn, how about?

JOCELYN DRAW: I miss the era of MTV when they showed videos.

EISENBERG: Oh. Yeah.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Both music related requests, which is great because this is a music game. Is called " The News According to Huey Lewis."

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Jonathan.

JONATHAN COULTON, BYLINE: San Francisco has been home to some of America's greatest music acts; Etta James, Janice Joplin, Carlos Santana. I personally have a soft spot for Huey Lewis and his band "The News."

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: So, for this game we have rewritten lyrics to Huey Lewis's "Power Of Love" to be about major news items from the 1980s. All you have to do is identify the person, or group, or thing or whatever that I am singing about. Are you ready?

DRAW: Sure.

SULKIS: We'll see how it goes. Yeah.

COULTON: You both seem surprisingly stressed-out for a game about Huey Lewis and "The News." OK. Here we go. (Singing) Closet of shoes was a curious treat. Over a thousand pairs but only two feet. Road to fame on Ferdinand's dime. This Asian first lady had a really good time.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Karen.

SULKIS: Imelda Marcos.

COULTON: You got it.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: (Singing) 96 miles long and 12 feet tall. Built in the 60s, it was bound to fall. Hopeless rampart through a hopeful town. Power of gorbachev tore it down.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Karen.

SULKIS: Berlin wall.

COULTON: Berlin wall is correct.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: OK. Time for the chorus now.

(Singing) don't need stubble on your face, don't need to be a dude to go to space. Just learn how to operate a robot arm for grabbing satellite on the Challenger flight.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Jocelyn.

DRAW: Oh, my God. I'm sorry.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: You were so excited then you rang in.

DRAW: I know. I was totally excited. I don't know.

(LAUGHTER)

DRAW: I mean, I actually - you know what - I actually don't even get what the question was.

COULTON: I don't know, I know.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: OK. Karen?

SULKIS: Is it "Sally Ride?"

COULTON: It is "Sally Ride."

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: It was there - right, Jocelyn? - it was there in your head and then it was gone.

DRAW: No, actually. No.

COULTON: Oh, OK.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: (Singing) First time you saw it was days of yore, the coolest computer of 1984. With a beige, plastic case and a handle on top; got the power to make your hard drive stop.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Karen.

SULKIS: The Apple - Mac.

COULTON: The Macintosh computer, that is right. The Mac.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: OK. We are now at the bridge.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: (Singing) Selling weapons to Iran isn't fair, yeah, but you don't care. You do what you have to do to fund a foreign coup, shredding documents with Fawn Hall you feel the power of obstructing Congress.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Jocelyn.

DRAW: Oliver North.

COULTON: Ollie North. You got it.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: Making the Olympics is an uphill climb. The coolest running's in the winter time. It's cold and its icy sliding down that track. Is probably why they crashed. What's the name of that team?

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Jocelyn.

DRAW: The Jamaican bobsled team.

COULTON: That's right.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: Art Chung how'd we do?

ART CHUNG, BYLINE: Jocelyn had a good come back, but Karen is our winner.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Congratulations Karen. You are moving on to our ASK ME ONE MORE final round coming at the end of the show. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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