With so much suffering and confusion in the world, sometimes it’s nice to start a day and know that something wonderful will happen. For many people, Monday was that day, thanks to comedian Demi Adejuyigbe, a writer on The Good Place and the forthcoming Amber Ruffin Show on Peacock. Demi has also carved out a faithful following on social media, where he often posts song parodies and riffs on topics in pop culture.
But his most famous bit since 2016 comes on September 21, when he posts a video with a reworked version of Earth Wind and Fire’s “September.” It’s extremely weird and charming and very funny, and it’s grown to become a charitable endeavor as much as something to riff on. As Demi warned people the night before the best day of the year, the video would drop at 9:21 a.m. PST so those on the east coast needed to be patient.
But it was well worth the wait. The video began on an alarm clock showing that exact time, and the familiar Earth, Wind And Fire track began playing before things gleefully spiraled out of control. As the camera panned to a calendar marking September 21 and an empty bed with the words “THAT’S TODAY” hanging over it, the wave of nostalgia and fondness for the videos gave way to a legitimate laugh as Adejuyigbe finally appeared on screen and started dancing.
Each year the video gets more and more elaborate. This year’s video features an astounding array of transportation methods, including a box truck, airplane and a car flying by on the highway. There’s also an impressive amount of signage. Here’s my favorite screengrab from the video, though there are many great ones in the running.
The second half of the video addresses something many fans have wondered over the years: where does he go with it next? As the videos get more and more elaborate, they take up more of his time and effort to create.
“Well gang, we did it. Five years, five September videos,” he says, petting a very good dog. “And that’s such a nice round number I think that’s the perfect place to stop.”
Cue dramatic music change, and a mention of how much the videos have raised over the years. It’s a funny, non-musical twist, but it comes with good news: if fans of the videos raise $50,000 for charities he linked online and in the video on YouTube, he’ll make another “September” video next year.
The fundraiser link he sent out with the video almost immediately crashed due to its popularity, but donations started rolling in.
holy shit the link is down because too many of you are going to it. that's awesome. i mean, not entirely, because, you know, it's down, but the reason is great. holy cow. this rules. again, not entirely, because, you know, but
— demi adejuyigbe (@electrolemon) September 21, 2020
If you’re just catching up on one of the most wholesome and charitable memes on the internet, we’ve got you covered. Here’s the first video, which is delightfully silly but does not feature paying for advertisements to soar through the sky.
The next year, a more minimalist version came with him dancing in front of a red backdrop, which revealed a confetti-filled surprise finish.
The 2018 version of September 21 featured, most notably, a children’s choir.
And finally, things really got gloriously complex in 2019 with some misdirection and a mariachi band.
As Demi once wrote in the YouTube description of these, “Once more sisyphus rolls the boulder up the mountain.” But at least it’s for a very good cause.