Guy Behind Those Dan Le Batard Show Parodies Didn't Ask For Any of This
In a content oasis, sports radio shows have been forced to find material in unusual places. Some are more comfortable getting weird than others. Recently, The Dan Le Batard Show With Stugotz has been buoyed by some listener-submitted parody songs from a guy who very much gets the show. And they are good.
The man behind the music, Andrew Streeter, put aside his many other interview requests to speak to me about what the experience of having four of his bangers played on ESPN's most popular radio program has been like.
Kyle Koster: You really came in guns a-blazin' with Show Poll Reada. How did that come into existence?
Andrew Streeter: A few weeks ago my friend submitted a song about show fines to the tune of Billy Joel's For the Longest Time. I heard it and thought, 'Oh, now it's on.' That day I wrote the Flagpole Sitta song. I told him I wasn't trying to one-up him and he said I was but it's totally fine. It's good to have a friendly competition. I have a degree in audio engineering. It's not my full-time gig as I wish it would be. I work in finance but have a couple irons in the fire as far as audio projects go. I edit podcasts, and mix and record music. It's really easy for me to put these things together. Every time I send something to the show, it's made it onto air. So I'm batting 1.000.
KK: What is your writing process like?
AS: As a kid I loved Weird Al [Yankovic]. I was super into everything he did, loved finding the funny in everything. That's why the show is very appealing to me. I don't miss a show so I internalize the jargon and beats. For the first one I just sat down and wrote everything I found funny about Stugotz. Then I thought about how I could fit it into the lyrical structure of the song. To me, it's important to try to keep some of the lyrical elements intact so it's familiar. It has to rhyme and fit within the structure of the source material. I wanted to make the Art Briles reference and immediately I thought about the lyric 'I'm so hot because I'm in hell.' That was the whole centerpiece that the song was written around. That's what sparked that in my brain.
I didn't know it was going to get played on air, but I had a feeling it would. They played the whole thing for Stugotz and it's a long song -- probably the longest one I'll ever do. All the other ones they've pared them down.
KK: How do you pick the source songs?
AS: Usually it's just something I like. If I'm not listening to the show, I'm listening to music so I have all these Spotify playlists with my favorite songs. When I was l looking for the Greg Cote song I went through older, mustier songs, but settled on Maneater for the Showkiller.
KK: How do you know how far to go goofing on the guys?
AS: I feel like I have a good feel for their sensibilities so I don't think I'd do anything that's more harsh than anything that they say to each other. The barometer is what would Dan say about the people I'm singing about. I try to follow that. If I want to get played on the show I need to make it fit with the show. I'm trying to make those guys laugh.
KK: And when you succeed at that?
AS: It's the best, man. It's the ultimate cherry on top. To me, it's a supreme compliment to be played at all. Redditors, I've noticed, really pick things up. They have a real-time thread happening, so I will post in there when something gets on air. It's really cool to see it get shared or retweeted by some big names. It's been awesome. It feels awesome to feel like those guys appreciate what I do.
KK: Since it's 2020, I have to ask what the long-term plan is here. Are you looking to parlay this into big money?
AS: [Laughs] No, not really. I've been parodying songs for my buddies and wife for a long time. Or I'll change a line of a song or whatever. I always think in that manner. This is the first time I've ever put stuff out there. It's obviously super niche because people who don't listen to the show don't really get it. People aren't going to come across my Soundcloud and think, 'Yeah this slaps!'
The end game, really, is just to participate in the show but if there's other benefits that come from that then it's just icing on the cake. I didn't throw my hat in the ring with a 25-year-old song parody thinking I'd get a bunch of site traffic. That wasn't the goal. I just get so jazzed because I really like those guys. I'm sure others do too because it's like you're hanging out with them. Theater of the mind, right? To be able to provide something that fits into the show's fabric is really rewarding.
KK: If I commissioned some parodies for other radio shows, could you do it?
AS: I'm familiar with Colin Cowherd and Dan Patrick but I don't have my finger on the pulse of their sensibilities.
KK: OK, I'll put my wallet away. What's your studio like at home?
AS: Like I said, I went to school for audio engineering and have an associate's degree in audio production. I was in a band in high school and college. We were a ska-punk band called Chinese Takeout. I'm a multi-instrumentalist. I originally got into recording because I wanted to do my own material. Now my wife and I play and write music together. I record friends from real life and Internet. I love the creative process and love to create. What makes it extra funny is that if it sounds good, it makes it even funnier because it feels like there's all this pomp and circumstances and extra effort going into a preposterous thing. I am lucky that what's going to sound awesome to people isn't going to translate to a lot of effort from me because of my background.
KK: That's true, the biggest barrier to user-generated content is often quality.
AS: My dream job would be to make nonsense audio like what they do in the shipping container. As silly as the show is, it means a lot to me.
KK: How do people around you know that?
AS: My wife knows I am always listening to it. I have a six-year-old son who doesn't understand the show but will say things like 'You'll never know.'
KK: I have that too. My five-year-old can't say 'Happy birthday' anymore without following it up with 'Good luck, I don't care.'
AS: Two and a half years ago I lost my job and was in a rut trying to figure out what I needed to do. Not to get crazy dark or anything, but I was pretty depressed. It sounds so dumb and cliche but I loved having the consistency of the show and feeling of hanging out with those dudes.
KK: What would you have thought if you'd taken a strong hallucinogen and were able to see this current reality around the bend?
AS: I don't even know. Still it's sort of surreal. Like, I know it's silly. It means more to me than anyone else. It's indescribable, really.