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Bad Lip Reading

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Bad Lip Reading (also known as BLR) is a popular YouTube channel that spoofs music videos and politicians by overdubbing humorous vocal work that matches the lip movements of the targets. Rolling Stone described the channel as “the breakout hit” of the 2012 US presidential election cycle.

The “Bad Lip Reader” behind the channel is an anonymous Texas-based music and video producer. The first Bad Lip Reading video released was a spoof of Rebecca Black’s song “Friday”, titled “Gang Fight”. New music and lyrics were matched to Black’s video to make it appear as though she were singing about gang warfare. The “Gang Fight” YouTube video, released in March 2011, earned BLR a million hits and thousands of subscribers.

More spoof videos followed, including interpretations of The Black Eyed Peas’ “Boom Boom Pow” (a viral video called “Everybody Poops”), Taylor Swift’s “Our Song” and Michael Bublé’s “Haven’t Met You Yet”. The latter was transformed into the “electronica inspired” “Russian Unicorn”, which Bublé himself praised as his “new favorite song” and “one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen.”

In a Rolling Stone interview, the producer behind the Bad Lip Reading videos said that he first encountered the technique of lip reading when his mother, then in her 40s, lost her hearing due to unknown causes. While she excelled at lip reading, he was unable to pick up the skill despite trying: “I was terrible at it.”

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