YouTuber Jarrod Alonge is pretty good at making us laugh. Chances are, you’ve seen one of his more popular videos, like, “Every Pop Punk Vocalist” or “How To Pronounce Band Names.” While creating these videos, he’s also created a world of fictional bands that play on hilarious tropes found within the genres. Take Sunrise Skater Kids who have a song called “Pop Punk Pizza Party” (the most hilariously generic pop-punk song ever created) with lyrics like “I’ll have my best friend in the front seat/My pizza in the back/Seven pairs of khaki shorts and stickers for my Mac.” Now, he’s launching an Indiegogo campaign for an ambitious new project: a satire compilation album, featuring all of his fictional bands, plus some new ones. The album will touch on the tropes of metalcore, pop-punk, crunkcore, emo, hardcore and more. AP caught up with Alonge to discuss the new album and what it’s like to be a YouTube personality in general.
We’ve never interviewed a YouTuber before. For the members of our audience who don’t know you, explain who you are and why they should know you.
JARROD ALONGE: Throughout high school and college, I made YouTube videos in my spare time. “Every Metalcore Vocalist” sort of caught on. Ever since then, I’ve been making videos poking fun at music stereotypes and clichés.
What made you decide to do that first video?
“Every Metalcore Vocalist” was the result of many observations from going to shows and watching heavy bands. I noticed this way of speaking that all vocalists adapt. When you really think about it, it’s ridiculous that people talk like that, because no one would in a normal situation. Some of my friends and I were making fun of it, and I thought I should make a video about it. At the time, I had virtually no subscribers, and this video was just going to be an inside joke between my friends and I. It took off on YouTube, and it became this big deal. So I made “Every Pop Punk Vocalist,” which has almost a million views now—it’s the most popular one—and sort of built a solid following. Since then, I’ve made “Misheard Lyrics,” and I’ve done different sketches. Sketch comedy is what I enjoy doing.
It seems like you’ve filled a niche in this scene. It’s kind of surprising there weren’t many YouTubers in our scene already doing the things you do.
I really don’t think my videos are that funny or as deserving of the recognition they get. Because that niche is so large, and no one’s really done anything with it, I guess I’m one of the first people to hit at those things. There are some other YouTubers I’ve seen: One of them is Steve Terreberry. He recently got an online show with Artery Recordings. He’s a very talented guitarist, and he’s actually going to be featured on the album I’m making.
What do you think of Bryan Stars?
I don’t know him too well. He got me into Warped Tour this summer, and we were going to make a video together. But it ended up being a busy day, and he was tired from touring, so we didn’t get to do anything. He’s cool. He’s really good at what he does.
What do you really think of pop-punk? Are you actually a fan?
I am a fan of pop-punk. I’m not as brushed-up on the genre as I’m made out to be in the videos. A lot of people think I’m a pop-punk connoisseur, and I get into all the good bands. But, I really don’t; I only listen to bands like the Story So Far, Man Overboard and the Wonder Years. I have a lot of friends who are into pop-punk music, but I’m not extremely into it.
What about metalcore?
I definitely like metalcore—that’s what I’m most familiar with. I’ve been listening to it since middle school. All genres have their good bands and bad bands. Metalcore still has really good, solid bands. Right now, Architects are probably one of the best metalcore bands. I almost made a video with them a couple months ago. I really like Northlane. It’s unfortunate their vocalist recently left. There’s, like, this new form of metalcore that is taking off with bands like Erra and This Or The Apocalypse. But metalcore in itself is so diverse that it’s kind of hard to say what my favorite bands are.
So you’re doing an Indiegogo campaign for an album. What exactly is the project about?
You know the bands [like Sunrise Skater Kids] that were in my “Every Vocalist” videos? Have you seen the spin-off songs from those bands, like, “Pop Punk Pizza Party”? It’s a compilation album. It’s going to be 15 songs. It’s all of those bands, plus a bunch of new bands. So I’m basically making a 15-song music satire album, looking at most of the popular, alternative, Warped Tour genres. It’s going to be mastered by Joey Sturgis [producer for Asking Alexandria, Of Mice & Men and the Word Alive]. I’m gonna have some other YouTubers in on it. Steve Terreberry is gonna do a lot of guitar and Patty Walters will be doing vocals for the Sunrise Skater Kids songs. Drewsif Stalin is another YouTuber; he makes these really cool djent/prog-metal covers. He’s gonna be in on it, too. There will probably be some more people getting in on it. There will be all sorts of vocalists and musicians collaborating on it.
Sunrise Skater Kids will have four songs. One is “Pop Punk Pizza Party,” re-recorded. The next one is gonna be the single of the album. It’s gonna be a generic pop-punk song. I think it will have lyrics about a girl or whatever. Then, they’re gonna have an easycore song, like, Chunk! No, Captain Chunk! and Four Year Strong. All of these songs are going to be completely over the top and unnecessary. There will also be an acoustic track by Skater Kids.
Are you part of one of those multi-channel networks? How does that work for you?
Yes, I’m part of Base79 [one of the large YouTube MCNs, receiving more than 750,000,000 views a month]. They’re based in London. It works pretty nicely. They help a lot with channel growth, optimizing my current content and teaching me all the little secrets.
Obviously, you’re making great stuff. Do you plan on making this into a career?
Right now, it’s definitely just a hobby. I have a career planned out in medicine that I’m still rooting for. There are a lot of people that are more deserving of it than me. The only way I could make a career of it is if it covered my living expenses and I could get some awesome deal out of it, like, having my own show. If I get to a million subscribers, I would definitely consider making a career out of it.
I really like the Issues “Tissues” video. Do you have any dream artists you’d like to do videos like that with?
I can’t really think of any dream artists. For me, the dream people to work with would be, like, Louis C.K. or Larry David or different directors and writers. My favorite videos that I’m most proud of are the sketch ones that have nothing to do with music. Some of the recent ones like “How To Mosh” and “This Is Hardcore.” “Tissues”—the sketch with Issues—was music oriented, but it really had nothing to do with music at all. I enjoy doing videos like that. I mean, I enjoy doing “Misheard Lyrics” and “How To Pronounce Band Names,” but there’s only so much you can make fun of.
Tell me about some of the other new “bands” that are going to be on the album.
There’s Amidst The Grave’s Demons, which is from “Every Metalcore Vocalist.” They’re gonna have three metalcore parodies. One will be a melodic hardcore one, like, the Ghost Inside, and one will be a metalcore medley of all the popular songs of the last five years. Sunrise Skater Kids will have those four songs. Chewed Up—the hardcore band from “Every Hardcore Vocalist”—havn’t had a song yet, but they’re gonna have two songs on the album—one traditional hardcore song, like Terror and then an alternative hardcore song, like Stray From The Path. Rectangle are going to be a djent/prog-metal band. They’ll be like Volumes or Born Of Osiris. Then there’s the deathcore band, Vermicide Violence, which is a play on Suicide Silence. There’s going to be an emo/Tumblrcore band called Canadian Softball. It will be, like, La Dispute or the World Is A Beautiful Place or Tiny Moving Parts. The last one will be the 2008 crunkcore phase, like, Brokencyde. They’re gonna be called $wag Choad.
Depending on how much I make, if I go over the Indiegogo goal, I could make new songs or new bands. There are a lot of things I have planed for if I go over. I’d like to make lyric videos and music videos.
Alright, so we know the album’s coming out. Anything else we should look out for?
I’ll still be doing “Misheard Lyrics.” Eventually, once things chill out after this album, I’d like to think about doing a legit web series with a record label—or, who knows, Alternative Press. alt