Baauer has apologized to Harlem for stealing/ruining/annoying us all with his song, “Harlem Shake.” Read his open letter below:
I’m sorry so much of the world thinks you dress up in fuzzy animal suits and superhero costumes and do a weird dance that you don’t do because of a song I made.
I didn’t mean for any of this to happen, I swear. I was just trying to make a goofy dance song—like Yello’s “Oh Yeah,” from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, remember that one? Like that. And besides the zipper synths and growling lions and whatnot, I needed a catchy snippet for the hook. So I sampled the part of Plastic Little’s “Miller Time”where dude says, “I’ll punch you in your face/And do the Harlem Shake.” It’s not that great of a song or anything. And they’re not even from Harlem, those guys, they’re from Philadelphia, like me. I just needed something to plug in there, and that part fit with what I was doing.
I feel really bad about everything’s that’s come of it since—the kids from Australia making that video, then all those Internet nerds, then seemingly everyone else on the planet, following along, getting in the spirit, making their own version like a bunch of lemmings jumping into a fjord in Norway. (Hey! There’s an idea! A Harlem Shake video where everyone’s dressed like lemmings, and they dance right off a cliff!) Did you see the one the fucking Mitch McConnell’s campaign staff made? If not, don’t look it up. It’s… it’s not good.
And I feel even worse seeing as how there already was a dance called the Harlem Shake—a real one, a pretty cool one, too, that had actually originated in Harlem and stuff, that G. Dep and them did in that video back in 2001. G. Dep’s Child of the Ghetto album, by the way? Totally underrated. Excellent album, front to back. That’s sad what happened, with him turning himself in for the murder from 20 years ago and all. But that was a stand-up thing that he did.
Anyway, like I said, sorry. It was an accident.
It’s too late for that. We’ve already been subjected to this.
Note: This letter is a parody, as a part of a book written by Dave Bry.
Hello. My name is Dave and I wrote a book called Public Apology that goes on sale today. It’s a memoir made up of open letters to people who I’ve somehow transgressed against during my life. I think it’s good to admit our mistakes and apologize when we’re in the wrong.