A couple of mornings ago, I came across the following ABA blog post by ABA president Jeff Gordon: Ladies and Gentlemen, LIVE from Camp Avocet…Pish & Twitch!!!. For anyone who likes birding and musical parodies it’s worth a listen (I missed breakfast and was almost late for a dentist appointment trying to make it through the YouTube links).
In a nutshell: Camp Avocet is an ABA run summer camp for young birders and Pish & Twitch is a musical duo newly formed by two of the campers Caleb and Brendan. Following a long tradition in song parody, they took well-known tunes and replaced the lyrics to poke fun at, in this case, birding and birders. Five songs were recorded and can be found on YouTube, through the links in Jeff’s article.
The first three songs (in posted order) used contemporary tunes the only one of which I recognized was their second song “Moves Like Jaeger” which was obviously a parody of the Maroon 5 and Christina Aguilera hit “Moves Like Jagger”. The other two tunes were lifers for me once I made identifications with the help of my phone’s SoundHound app. The first song “Chase Me Maybe” about going after rare bird sightings, covered “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Japsen and the third tune, about night-time bird call identification, “Flight Calls”, used the melody (if you can call it that) from “Thrift Shop” by “Party DJ Rockerz”.
The final two songs were based on well known hits from my own youth. The first of these was “Migrants Go By” sung to the Don Mclean hit “American Pie”. Impressively, they covered the 8-plus-minute long version and not one of the shorter radio-friendly variants. And finally, the song, “Bill Stewart”, clearly aimed at all of the camp leaders, was sung to the Billy Joel hit “Piano Man”.
It wasn’t what you might call a ‘tight’ performance as they had obviously bitten off more than they had time to practice for but that did not seem to detract from the energy in the room. Besides, the hard part of a parody is crafting the lyrics and there they did some excellent work.
If you are a part or or even just familiar with birding culture then you will probably enjoy listening to Pish and Twitch.