“Weird Al” Yankovic — the longtime singer, songwriter, record producer, satirist, actor, music video director, film producer and author will come to the Community Arts Center in Williamsport on Aug. 5.
Yankovic has risen above and beyond being a simple comedy act through his four decades of musical success. His hits, including “Eat It,” “Like a Surgeon,” “Fat,” “Smells Like Nirvana” and “Amish Paradise” have taken him to icon status, an instantly-recognizable celebrity to folks young and old.
“I definitely don’t view myself that way,” Yankovic said. “I’m just really happy that I’ve been fortunate to have the success that I’ve had doing something that I love to do.”
In addition to his current album (Mandatory Fun) and tour (The Mandatory World Tour), Yankovic has stayed busy as an actor. He will be featured in the Netflix original series “Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp,” though his role is being kept top secret.
“I can’t talk about it,” Yankovic said. “Up until very recently, they didn’t even want me to say that I was part of it. It’s a small cameo, I’m just in one of the episodes. I was very honored to be asked, as I was a big fan of the movie. I love all the people involved in the making of it, and it was a lot of fun. I can’t wait to see it myself.”
While Yankovic is well-known for his parodies of major pop hits, he also had his own TV show, “The Weird Al Show.” A recurring character known as “Harvey the Wonder Hamster” who was generally met with hilarious yet grisly fates and inspired Yankovic to pen a song about the rodent.
“Harvey’s doing great,” Yankovic said. “He’s getting along quite well.”
Yankovic is obviously a large proponent of playing music and encourages young, upstart accordion players with some sage words of wisdom.
“Just keep practicing,” he said. “I think 20, 22 hours a day should do it.”
The bonafide comedy legend feels fortunate for all of his success. He imagines the alternative to be less exciting.
“I would probably be a dental hygienist somewhere in Montana if I weren’t doing this,” Yankovic said.
If you want to see Weird Al in concert, he prefers that you’d buy a ticket, for your own sake.
“If you try to sneak in the back door, you might get arrested,” he joked.