We've already talked about how the pandemic has been bringing us weird and wonderful music from entirely unexpected places. And the good news is that, right now, there's a new local music scene developing right near you. It's called your local library, and their songs are about to blow your mind.
That earworm that's about to live in your head for the next two weeks is the viral musical sensation from Duke University. Librarian Jamie Keesecker, stage name MicrOpaqu3, collabed with his talented three-year-old Naima to create an instructional music video that blends the best parts of Daft Punk synths with a very afterschool special aesthetic. The video has already racked up over 700,000 views, and is now available on Spotify and Apple Music. (Get your act together, Tidal.)
You wouldn't think that a group of people known for shushing you would be such musical prodigies. But after months of reading smutty Victorian novels and rearranging Dewey decimals in utter solitude, librarians are having to come out of their hidey holes to evangelize the practice of library takeout, where people can drive up to their local free book depository McDonald's style and have a bag full of knowledge and tales dumped right into their passenger seat. And to show you how it works, several librarians have decided to instruct patrons in the least literary way how: through the power of ironic music videos.
And, look, if you're going get into library takeout music, or loan-fi as it's sure to be called, you may as well be an utter hipster about it. And while Duke's "Library Takeout" might just be the song of the fall (the season, not our crumbling society), librarians have stacked YouTube with plenty of other takeout jams before it was cool. As with all nascent music scenes, it started with simple tunes -- garage band jingles giving off a very late-night commercial vibe. But the first breakout hit caused an, to put it in literary terms, intertextual chain reaction of dope. I'm talking, of course, of the Nashville Public Library's take on "Ice Ice Baby," "Curb Side, Baby."
But for my money, the real sleeper hit has to be "Library Takeout at the Curbside" by Timberland Regional Library's Erin McAdams and Eli Dayley, whose take on "When Doves Cry" not only features the cardboard cutout formerly known as Prince, but also finds a way to make picking up books in your car sound as sexy as Prince's guitar riffs.
And there you have it, a brief history of a (for now) brief musical sensation I'm sure will dominate the streaming charts for years to come. Just don't forget to patronize your local library to keep the good times going. But when you're there, be sure to act real confused about the concept of a book takeout. That way, you might just be responsible for the next loan-fi super hit.
Please support your local library from a distance. And do the same with Cedric by following him on Twitter.
Top Image: Nashville Public Library, Timberland Regional Library