The 25 Days of Newman: Finished!

Thanks, Rand...If you had asked us back on November 30th to describe how would feel tonight, finally having completed this silly, fun, infuriating little project called The 25 Days of Newman, we might have gotten somewhere in the right ballpark, but nowhere near the same section or row of bleachers. In short, we’re relieved to be finished, a little wistful that it’s over, and totally thrilled with the response it’s gotten. In one short month, the theme songs have been played over 36,000 times and counting; to quote Jonathan Coulton, “Suck on that, old media!”

And yet, we’ve indeed come to the 25th and final song in the series; and to continue the strained baseball analogy, we decided to throw you all a little change-up…

Better Off Dead (Randy Newman’s “Theme from ‘It’s a Wonderful Life'”)

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This song, along with 24 other songs in the project, is available absolutely free (with the option to pay if you so choose) on our The 25 Days of Newman page.

But wait; there’s more! We’ve also included a bonus song: the raw piano track, so that you can make your very own official Randy Newman Theme Song for whatever you want! We’d love to hear what you come up with—if there’s enough of them, we may even start a separate Bandcamp page of fan-created Newman themes. (Maybe; we haven’t thought a lot about it yet) Also, if you prefer to “roll your own,” fan Colleenky has graciously transcribed the sheet music for us. Merry Holidayofchoice!

All that out of the way, some thanks are due. In no particular order:

  • The person (exactly whom, we can’t quite recall) who planted the seed by suggesting this project, or something similar to it, way back when in a comment on our website
  • Ken Plume at Quick Stop Entertainment, who reignited the fire, hounding us until we finally decided to start the project, if only to keep him quiet (seriously, though: thanks a bunch, Ken)
  • Ethan Diamond and the good folks at Bandcamp, an outstanding site for hosting, organizing and presenting music—for free!
  • The many folks who posted blog links, including WHEDONesque, Geekdad, Rifftrax, Merlin Mann, and a bunch of folks on Twitter
  • Every single one of you who listened, told their friends, and shared our music—and especially those of you generous enough to drop a little cash our way in return
  • Most of all, a huge thanks to the incomparable Randy Newman: a singular voice in American popular music, one of the greatest songwriters of the 20th century (and into the 21st), and truly an inspiration to the both of us. Get well soon, Randy…

Thank you all again for coming along on the ride; we had a great time doing this. So much so that we wouldn’t put it past us to pull another stunt like it one of these days…


  1. Posted December 25, 2008 at 3:27 am | Permalink

    Man, oh man! You guys wrote that one first, didn’t you? 😉 Seriously, it’s really good, and kind of haunting. Well done!

    Thank you for the shout-out. 🙂 To get you started on your collection of fan-created theme songs, here are three.

    [NB: I posted this twice to correct the html. Please delete the first one when it comes through for moderation. And this NB too, if possible. Thanks.]

  2. Rich
    Posted December 25, 2008 at 4:06 am | Permalink

    Great job, guys, but I am a bit disappointed… You missed an awesome opportunity for a rickroll. 🙂

    Hmmm… Randy Newman’s “Theme from 4chan”…

  3. Posted December 25, 2008 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    Haha, being Newman’d would be awesome!

    Also, before I miss it today is a special holiday called Grav-mass. It’s a celebration of science, which I hear has been known to have a blinding quality to it.

    In any case. I wish everyone a Happy Grav-mass. ¡Feliz Gravidad!

  4. Rhett
    Posted December 25, 2008 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    Holy smokes, that was just beautiful. Thanks for just about the funniest Xmas gift EVER.

  5. Jack F
    Posted December 25, 2008 at 11:00 am | Permalink

    Fantastic! Thanks for a great December!
    Oh, and Merry Christmas, Guys.

  6. Posted December 26, 2008 at 12:26 am | Permalink

    After all that, it appears that I got one of the URLs wrong. Here‘s the third theme song.

    Thanks again for 25 days of awesome sauce. 🙂

  7. oddbill
    Posted December 27, 2008 at 12:27 am | Permalink

    That song (Better of dead) is shockingly beautiful. That was the perfect capper to a really enjoyable 25 day exercise, but honestly – that’s one lovely little song. Quite a welcome surprise. Nicely done!

  8. Andrew Hackard
    Posted December 27, 2008 at 6:53 am | Permalink

    It occurs to me, entirely too late, that the ultimate in meta P&S humor would be to write the Randy Newman theme song for a movie that already HAS a Randy Newman theme song. I suggest Toy Story.

  9. Posted December 27, 2008 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

    @Andrew Funny thing about that – their original Newman parody, the theme song to Seabiscuit, was just such a song. You should check the “Randy Newman’s “Theme from ‘Seabiscuit'” commentary track on the album “Opening Band.” (or listen from their Music page) They talk about the genesis of the song as finding out Randy Newman wrote the song, and it not sounding like a Newman song.

  10. Ross
    Posted December 28, 2008 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

    I don’t like “It’s a Wonderful Life,” but I loved this song!

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