I Might Also Be Giants

By JoCo October 1, 2009

As many have pointed out to me (often concluding with the phrase “Noooooooooo!”), my show in Chicago on the 10th is competing directly with a They Might Be Giants show at the Vic Theater. Also it is a Flood show, which is the worst possible thing it could be vis a vis making it a difficult decision for those of you who are fans of both of us. Flood is the record that made my head explode way back when, they are a huge influence on me, and I wish I could go see this show. I believe there are still tickets available. It’s Flood people, seriously.

But as I was pondering this cruel turn of fate, it came to me: I should also do a Flood show. Unbelievably, at least a few people have bought tickets to see my little show at Park West (tickets also still available, ha ha, just saying), so apparently I have to do some kind of performance. I’ve strategized with Paul and Storm about it, and we’ve decided that by stealing a little time from each of our sets (and by learning to “play our instruments”), we can probably make it happen. Many of you have heard our fantastic cover of “Birdhouse in Your Soul” so really we just have to do that 18 more times. And it still leaves plenty of time for us to do our own stuff, so those of you who bought tickets to our show because you hate They Might Be Giants will still be entertained.


If you live in Ann Arbor and are coming to see us at the Ark on the 8th, the answer is no, we will absolutely not be ready to do the same thing for you. But maybe we can sneak in a song or two if we’re feeling frisky. Turns out tickets there? Also still available


brandilion says

This is pure genius. If only i was in chicago.

Gordon says

This is the coolest thing I have ever heard.

Teel McClanahan III says

2 sad things about this (very, very) happy thing:

1) I don't live anywhere near Chicago


Truly, it is genius, though. Everyone go have fun!

Bryan J Busch says

If only humans were evolved enough so that this performance might be purchasable. Alas, copyright being what it is...

Actually, you should talk to them (and/or the Deranged Millionaire) and see if you can work something out. I know that TMBG has an unusual amount of control over the digital versions of their music.

A. Sage says

This is unspeakably awesome. I raise my prosthetic forehead high in an eyebrow-twitch salute to you, good sirs.

Can't wait!

a_stoddard says

This sounds a lot like a potential (Second)Best.Concert.Ever

Seriously, set a camcorder up on the sound booth and hope that none of your fans are freakishly tall.
I'd buy it.

Steeb2er says

Now I'm even MORE upset that I can't make the show. Ironically, I'll pass you guys on 94 when I'm coming from Michigan back to Chicago ... *sigh*

Kudos for trying to accommodate all the fans. I've never seen an artist be so cooperative with his fans.

... now what happens if TMBG decide to do some JoCo covers ... ?

Gordon says

It just occurred to me that there's probably someone living in Chicago who knows all of the TMBG songs on accordion, and would rather be the guy playing them with you than see TMBG play them without being that guy.

Maybe this guy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GI2a7_XfKaI

Josh Barnickol says

I'm seeing the TMBG Flood show in St. Louis the night before! I think I can make a Flood-high fueled 5 hour drive for back to back awesomeness! Especially since I missed the show at Off Broadway last month.

Dylan says

I'll be at the Ann Arbor show (was at the last Ann Arbor show as well) and, as weird as it sounds, I sure hope you guys are feeling frisky!

paulandstorm says

No, Gordon, you don't understand: the lack of accordion is by choice.

And, as far as we're concerned, that's a selling point.


M_pony says

do The Giants know you're also Flood-ing a show? Maybe they will be honoured and thrilled. Maybe they will throw an octopus at your head. Since there will be three of you perpetrating this upon the world, your chances are two in three that your head will not be directly targeted by said octopus.

Hmm, is there a saving throw against octopus?

Zach T. says

I'm running merch for the Ann Arbor show, so I'm hoping that if you're feeling frisky the other couple songs might be "Twisting" and "They Might Be Giants".

Courtney says

awesome! wish I could go.... I'll be seeing TMBG's Flood show when they come to seattle, but it would be uber to see it from you as well!

laura says

i am coming to your chicago show, and had no idea tmbg was also playing that night... and flood!!! how can this be?! the worst of all concert conflicts!

i'm sticking with you, but i'm ever pleased at the thought of tmbg paul, storm and joco style. the birdhouse in your soul cover killed me the first time you did it :)

David Biggs says

Just did a phone interview with Jonathan earlier this afternoon and I'm really excited for the concert - now especially with this announcement because I've been a huge TMBG fan for a long time!

If anyone's interested in checking out the interview, you can read it here:

Jeremy says

Ah c'mon Joco.... if you can learn to play that weird electronic loopy-bloopy thing you're always carrying around, surely you can learn to play the accordion by the 10th.... ;)

Jen says

Aw!! C'mon! Can't you guys try to change the time of your show so we can go to both?

How can do you do this to me? You're breaking my heart!

nesdude says

I'll be at Ann Arbor. Feel frisky. Go on, do it. We all know you really want to!

...or not. Still, can't wait for next week! First JoCo concert for me :D

Jonathan Chaffer says

Another one making the pilgrimage to Ann Arbor here...

Storm should be able to learn the piano part to Dead by the 8th. It's so easy, even I can play it!

Zac says

Hopefully this leads to the ultimate nerd rock supergroup, with Coulton, P+S, TMBG, Weird Al, and MC Frontalot performing on the same stage.

Andu says

OK, this might be totally nutsoid, but what if JoCo & Co play the first set at Park West while TMBG are playing at the Vic and then (and here's where it gets good) they SWITCH THEATERS and do their second sets a la Bizarro World. They Might Be JoCo / Jonathan Might Be A Giant. It'd be like watching the first half of the Blues Brothers and then the last half of The Fugitive, or verse visa.

Jeremy says

The tech is to go to the TMBG show at 4pm then go to the JoCo show at 8. Mwahahahahaha.

Gina says

Wow. I thought this was a joke when I saw it on the twitters. You guys rock! Would love to see it.

Erwin says

You know, I would dream of having the money to blow, just to fly from Tampa to Chicago, but I know that as soon as I got there I would come to a horrible realization: I STILL wouldn't be able to decide between the two.

Brendan says

Whoo hoo. I will be at your Chicago show. I'm bummed about the TMBG concert, but I've seen them a couple times and this will be my first live joco.

Can you learn "Women and Men"?

I would be even more happy if you were to perform "Nightgown of the Sullen Moon," which isn't a Flood song but is amazing anyhow.

Derek says

I'll be at the Ann Arbor show and if I can put in a request:

"Road Movie to Berlin"

(It's pretty austere guitar-wise, and just think of the opportunity to whistle!)

zymn says


damn man you should do your show early and then hop on over to see TMBG. that would fix everything!

AJS says

TMBG is playing an early (4 PM) show at The Vic for All Ages. If one had the wherewithall, they could see both shows. It IS possible.

Tsujiku says

Hm... It seems my ride might not be able to make it and I've exhausted all other options.

By chance is there anyone from Purdue going to the Chicago concert with a couple extra seats in the car who might be willing to drive a guy and his girlfriend to see the wondrous JoCo?

Of course, we'd chip in for gas and everything. I'd really appreciate it.

Contact me at: tsujiku *at* gmail.com

Mike Wilcox says

WOW. My wife and I are going to see this show. I saw Weird Al at the IL State Fair last year, and he was incredible, but I am much more excited to see you. I am a fan of Neil Diamond and such golden oldies (seeing as I am in my EARLY forties), but my wife is young and HATES such singers. She likes you, except when your doing "moldy oldies", but she loves TMBG (esp. their children friendly stuff which is brilliant). Their kid podcasts rock.

Anyway, I am excited. We had to lie to the kids about where we are going, because they adore you! I have the Joco For Kids playlist on WMP. Their favorite is Code Monkey, but they also love Creepy Doll a lot. (Scary, no?)

OK, you better show, 'cause I have my tickets and I am an super big, super tall, nerd with impulse control issues and a love of badly dubbed Kung Fu movies. (Yes, it is amazing that I am actually married. My lovely nerdette bride saved me from a life of living in my parents' basement and sowing my own klingon uniforms.)

Ann says

Whoa, look like even TMBG themselves have heard of the JoCo/P&S Flood show and are bummed to miss it. Just got the TMBG news email with their 'itinerary' in it: "DAY FOUR. Saturday. On to Chicago [...] It’s a double-header at the Vic. Families and Flood! Miss the Jonathan Coulton tribute to Flood the same night."

So. Awesome.

BobOm says

What are these "instruments" of which you speak?

Aaron says

Just saying, Accordion-playing-Chicago-based-JoCo-TMBG-fan here who still hasn't made his Saturday plans offering his services if you have a change of heart. Sample: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S27YGvQyyD8

Alora says

Find a way to somehow sync your Flood performance up with theirs so people in between the two concerts will get a perfect mix of both.

The Vic and Park West are pretty close to eachother, if you both just play really really loudly it could work.

DStock says

Hope I don't come across like Debiie Downer. Not that I do not like TMBG, but I hope this will not eat in too much to the main sets. First time seeing JoCo and I am super hyped up for it. Will be a bit disappointed if I come for the JoCo and see TMBG. TMBG is a fine band and all, but if I wanted to see them I would go to their show instead. As long as I see plenty of JoCo songs though I will be happy no matter what.

JoCo says

@DStock: Well, the album itself is about 38 minutes. We're going to steal some from my set and some from P+S to make room. I usually do about two hours just me, so that still leaves lots of time for JoCo stuff.

Also, this is HISTORIC.

Seriously, I'm aware that not everyone wants to hear us do Flood, and we didn't announce till after most of you already bought tickets. So if anyone feels cheated out of a good show at the end of the night, please write to me and I'll make it right.

Rich says

I move that JoCoPaSto henceforth be known as "They May or May Not Be Giants."

DStock says

No problem JoCo. Still leaves over an hour and a half of your stuff, so I am happy. I was worried it would be over half the set or something. Either way, looking forward to the show!

Richard Rosenthal says

My only disappointment is that my friends already bought TMBG tickets and wont be joining me. (bastards)

Alex Yeager says

My first time seeing JoCo will be tomorrow! Woo hoo!

More importantly, since the merch guy is here and all: which CDs/DVDs will be available at the show?

And another vote for "Women and Men." Let Friskiness Abound!

Jace says

Holy crap. Someone BETTER get a recording of this!

Matthew Nordhaus says

"I might also be giants."

When will we know?

Erin says


Ana says

I'm a little sad I have to miss this. My best friend from Canada was originally going to fly in to see TMBG with me on the 10th, and also on the 8th in Detroit. When we realized you also had shows on both of those days, we discussed which one we should go to, and decided to see you on the 8th.
Turn out, while TMBG is still my favourite band of all-time, I think I'd rather see you play Flood than TMBG (as it is something i've never seen before).

In conclusion, we would highly appreciate you guys playing some TMBg on the 8th, so we don't feel like were missing out as much.

Alternately, you guys could crash the Vic and play -with- TMBG. I think after that my mind would be permanently blown.

miles maxwell says

What's a real bummer is that is ALSO the night of Dead Milkmen in Chicago. Three acts, and I'd love to see any/all of them. I bought tickets for TMBG before I saw this (your?) show so I'll honor that but, having seen them 5 or 6 times before, I would have seen this (your) show instead had I known.

Anyway, very cool idea about also doing Flood or even parts of it. Maybe John and John will reciprocate if people tweet/twit your plans enough?

Monique Rio says

TMBG is playing in Detroit the same night as the JoCo show in Ann Arbor. Lots of us Southeast Michigan people would love to go to both. I'll be at the Ark tonight, though. :)

Ann says

I and three of my friends are going to be at the Ark tonight. There would be more going except you just had to pick the same night as TMBG to hold a concert. I say, BE FRISKY!

Chris says

I already have tickets for this, but didn't hear this news until today.


Preston says

Seriously, I can't be there, but I NEED TO HEAR THIS. JoCo, can this be made available in some way? Crossing your style with the TMBG songs I grew up with...this demands availability for widespread public consumption!

Kelly says

I just heard all of Flood straight through for the first time today.
AWESOME doesn't begin to cover it.
My fiance Steve and I are excited, this will be our second JoCo/P+S show :)
Birdhouse in Your Soul is still my fav, and Steve loves Sapphire Bullets of Pure Love.
Still contemplating if we should join the whole Twitter thing, if we did it would be to follow you guys and Amanda Palmer.

meg says

i think using your fancypants machine for Mr. Horrible would be lovely.

Danielle says

Oh heck yes. I saw a show of yours here about a year or so ago, and it's the best live show I ever saw. Just got my tickets.

Jeff Yates says

Ann Arbor show was fantastic! Nice job.

JoCoP&S be Giants says

Just got back from the Chicago JoCo/Flood show at The Park West.
Absolutely Awesome!
However at one point I thought JoCo was pulling an Andy Kauffmanesque stunt and that there would be no JoCo Tunes (and that TMBG at The Vic were actually performing JoCos full show- the ol' switcheroo)

Thankfully the JoCo tunes were indeed played!

(tho it would have been nice to announce mid-Flood that The JoCo songs we know and love were indeed ahead.)
Rock on!

Paul says

Please, dear Lord in heaven... PLEASE tell me someone recorded this show. The Internet needs to hear Peter Segal's arch-yet-disembodied voice. Forget cover songs, I want to see this show as the start of a new trend: Bands lovingly covering other bands' albums, start to finish.

And again, please, Internets. Please tell me someone recorded this show. If only to hear "Dead" again.

Erin says

Yes. Recorded. Check back later for details.

Anonymous says


Recording available on YouTube of Flood intro and Birdhouse In Your Soul:


Wish I had been there!

Mike says

Don't miss the awesome soundboard recording of the Flood show, available in the forum: