Friz Frizzle, the self-proclaimed ‘Song-Ruiner’ has a dream: to ruin your childhoods by bastardising well known songs that you grew up with. If this sounds like something you would like to happen, then his show Heaven Knows I’m Friz Frizzle Now should come very high on your watch list. You won’t find him on the official listing site this year, Frizzle is playing with PBH’s Free Fringe at 15.30 in the centrally located Globe Bar on Niddry Street.
Provides the audience with a great many belly laughs
Friz is primarily a musical comedian, whose M.O. is to find funny random phrases that sound like the title of a song, then rewrite the verse and chorus to justify the comical punchline. If you want to get a better idea, listen to his short but sweet Spotify album Parody City. If that doesn’t float your boat then rest assured, his show will not be for you either. If these comedy ditties are up your street, however, then the live experience is a must.
Friz starts the show by testing out his stand-up chops, delivering a great routine about a streamed music concert in a cinema, which introduces him well to the audience. The comedy links and anecdotes between songs are varied, and can be very silly or very personal. Such examples include a stream of consciousness building on obscure Doctor Who trivia, and the hot-of-the-press genuinely true story of how the last thing the gunman behind the Dayton, Ohio massacre did before committing his atrocities earlier this month, was to retweet Frizzle himself. I’ll let him tell you the whole story.
The musical element to the show can serve as something of a self-inflicted quiz experience, if you are so inclined as an audience member. I delight in trying to deduce what tune he is playing before he reaches the chorus. All the songs are familiar, but some take a while to place – incorporating Disney, cheese anthems, classic rock and pop to tell outlandish stories from a range of fictional perspectives. Look out for his Marvel Movie Medley and jazzing-up of Les Misérables lyrics to upbeat anthems.
As fun as the show is, Frizzle doesn’t have the loveliest of singing voices, although he hits every note and the angsty warbling suits his stage persona. He shouts down the mic and the sound distorts a little too often for my comfort, and while it is the case that brevity is usually the soul of wit, some of the songs are prone to cutting their losses before reaching a justifiable climax. You’ll certainly get ‘value for money’ though, as he packs in song after song, and provides the audience with a great many belly laughs. Not bad for a show that doesn’t even cost to get in, and it’s no wonder that for many Fringegoers, a Friz Frizzle show is an annual pilgrimage.