Yesterday I came across a song by a group called Papa Razzi and the Photogs that had a curious title. “Song About Pat Toomey, Believer in American Values, Etc.” was a 1-minute-26 second-ditty that called him “good ol’ Pat Toomey” and vaguely touted his political qualifications. Papa Razzi, whose vocalist sounds like a country/folk bar singer and also kind of like Pee-wee Herman occasionally, doesn’t really go very deep on anything about Pat Toomey at all: He believes in the constitution, he believes in democracy, he represents Pennsylvania and he loves the country.
I figured it was an an attempt by a Pennsylvania singer-songwriter to help out the campaign he supported and get some attention, but it’s not. This song came out in 2014! What gives?
Turns out Papa Razzi is actually Massachusetts-based Matt Farley, a man who has written more than 18,000 songs over the last decade or so. He told The Guardian two years ago he made $23,000 a year from his back catalogue — 60 percent from MP3 sales and the rest from streaming revenue. “If someone might search for it, Farley will have a song about it,” Farley writes on his website.
I did a quick scan and found songs about professional wrestler John Cena, science guy Bill Nye, actor Matthew McConaughey, Daily Beast writer Olivia Nuzzi, marathon faker Kip Litton, political artist Ai Weiwei, audio producer Whitney Jones, a few song about Donald Trump’s sons, some guy named Eric McQuade and buildings that used to be Pizza Huts but aren’t any more. The songs are all vague — as if Farley just googled the name and did no further research. Oddly enough, McConaughey’s muscles are mentioned in his song — but Cena’s aren’t in his.
And it was endless. I found a song about someone I once worked with (Buzzfeed executive editor Doree Shafrir) and a song titled “Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy Loves Elizabeth Bennet.” The only song I could find with any sort of rage at anyone was one titled “Karl Marx Was A Communist Man,” which praised Ronald Reagan and calls Marx evil. (Other Farley bands were more political. The Extreme Left Wing Liberals have a song titled “Legalize Cocaine.”) Another one of his monikers, The Guy Who Sings Songs About Cities & Towns, has a song titled “Best Song About Philadelphia.” For songs that are essentially music spam, Matt Farley’s project is actually kind of endearing.
The Toomey song comes from a 2014 collection of 100 songs about all 100 U.S. Senators. So, yes, Bob Casey has a song, too. And it is titled, hilariously, “Senator Bob Casey, Jr. Song.”
Please listen to this one, because it is amazing. It is even vaguer than the song about Toomey, if that’s possible. It actually contains the line, “He loves to say the Pledge of Allegiance.” Yes, I will ask one of Bob Casey’s staffers if he really does love to say the Pledge of Allegiance the next time I cover one of his events.
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