Tyler The Creator becomes Tyler The Grinch in the latest song from the soundtrack of Illumination’s updated take on the Christmas classic. In “I Am The Grinch,” Tyler puts himself in the Green Meanie’s… uh… fuzzy feet and Santa hat to explain just what makes the villainous protagonist of Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch just so unlovable and cranky about Christmas.
“Max with the sled / Off with their head / I don’t like love / I don’t like fun / When I’m around / Christmas is done,” Tyler gripes, his gruff voice perfectly complementing the Grinch’s inner dialogue, even if doesn’t quite match Benedict Cumberbatch’s frantic take on the grouchy, green menace. It’s reminiscent of another Illumination hit: Despicable Me, which was soundtracked by Tyler’s inspiration, Pharrell Williams. On that soundtrack, Pharrell also crafted a song getting into its villainous, soon-to-be hero’s head, called “Bad Day.” Rhyming as Gru, Pharrell riffed on freeze rays and Minions, giving a peek into just why Steve Carrell’s character was so crabby.
Tyler hasn’t quite followed fully in his hero’s footsteps; he only appears on one other song on the soundtrack, an updated version of the original theme song, “You’re A Mean One, Mr. Grinch,” which is sung from the perspective of the unseen narrator, insulting the surly humbug by calling him a banana with a “greasy, back peel.” At least the Grinch gets a little justice this time around, getting to tell his side of the story through Tyler’s slightly more sympathetic interpretation.