Release Date: Sep 27, 2011
Record label: Republic
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Stage & Screen, Show Tunes, Celebrity
Whether he’s having Stewie Griffin share the stage with Frank Sinatra Jr. or a hard-up Brian Griffin serenade his best friend’s wife, Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane frequently punctuates his show with musical interludes and full-on production numbers. It’s one of the most self-indulgent tendencies on a series that’s defined by its self-indulgence, but there’s also an underlying sincerity to the usually wiseass MacFarlane’s fondness for the classic-pop stylings of the Rat Pack.
A vanity project that evades any rational explanation, as its flights of fancy are so far removed from its creator’s home turf, Music Is Better Than Words is a traditional big-band album from Seth MacFarlane, the self-satisfied wise-ass behind Family Guy. Demonstrating precisely the same amount of imagination that led him to creating no less than three permutations of Wait Till Your Father Gets Home, MacFarlane plays it straight throughout Music Is Better Than Words, hiring American Dad composer Joel McNeely to create approximations of Nelson Riddle, Gordon Jenkins, and Billy May's arrangements for Frank Sinatra's deathless, mid-century records for Capitol. These classic concept albums are clearly the blueprint for Music Is Better Than Words, which was, after all, recorded at Capitol Records' legendary studio with MacFarlane singing into the very same microphone Sinatra used all those years ago, and there is a bit of a concept to this 2011 LP, too, with the cartoonist selecting songs never recorded by any member of the Rat Pack -- along with a couple recent tunes like “She’s Wonderful Too,” which McNeely originally wrote for The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles -- for his tribute to that ring-a-ding-ding swing.
Back in the 1990s an ambitious writer/animator had a dream. He would create a cartoon series following in the footsteps of The Simpsons, South Park and King of the Hill. Casually eschewing the intelligence of these predecessors, the sitcom's lowest common denominator crudity would prove monstrously successful. Family Dad would run for three seasons before being cancelled by the Fox network, then resurrected thanks to mass DVD sales and internet campaigners who could not live without its coarse jokes and unique characters such as a baby that can talk and a dog that can talk.
An unexpected but endearing valentine to the 1940s and 50s. Adrian Edwards 2012 This endearing album from Seth MacFarlane, the creator of TV's Family Guy, is a valentine to the popular culture of the 1940s and 50s. The choice of It's Anybody's Spring to open will come as no surprise to fans of that show. It was written for one of the Road to… pictures of Crosby, Hope and Lamour, a franchise that was affectionately parodied in Family Guy.