The Velvet Underground & Nico might be the establishment pick for “album that makes people form bands.” But for my money, nothing makes me want to play a guitar poorly with a group of like-minded individuals more than Talking Heads’ Remain In Light, specifically the iconic middle-class mind-melt “Once In A Lifetime.” It seems that Stephen Colbert was bitten by the same bug over the weekend. He performed the song at the Montclair Film Festival in New Jersey, complete with a perfect imitation of frontman David Byrne’s spastic dancing. Check out a fan-shot clip up top.
We don’t know what it is about folks in the late-night scene and imitating David Byrne — maybe it’s a shared love of suits? — but Colbert is far from the first to take on persona of the idiosyncratic frontman. Fred Armisen turned in one of the strongest episodes of his IFC mockumentary series Documentary Now! when he and Bill Hader parodied the band’s iconic concert doc Stop Making Sense as the fake band Test Pattern. And to close the circle, the fake band had a very real performance of their song “Art + Student = Poor” on Late Night With Seth Meyers.
And we shouldn’t be surprised at Colbert’s love of the Heads. He’s shown his fandom for ’80s alternative before, closing out 2016 with a performance alongside Michael Stipe of R.E.M.