Alfred Matthew “Weird Al” Yankovic was born on October 23, 1959, is an American singer-songwriter, music producer, actor, comedian, satirist, and a parodist. Yankovic is known in particular for his humorous songs that make light of popular culture and that often parody specific songs by contemporary musical acts. Since his 1st-aired comedy song in 1976, he has sold more than 12 million albums more than any other comedy act in history taped more than 150 parody and original songs, and has performed more than 1,000 live shows. His works have earned him 3 Grammy Awards among 9 nominations, 4 gold records, & six platinum records in the United States. Yankovic’s 1st top ten Billboard album (Straight Outta Lynwood) and single (“White & Nerdy”) were both released in 2006, nearly 3 decades into his career. In addition to recording his albums, Yankovic has written & starred in his own motion picture, UHF, and his own television show, The Weird Al Show, and conducted music videos for himself and other artists including Ben Folds, Hanson, Black Crowes, & The Presidents of the United States of America. He has also made guest appearances on many television shows, in addition to starring in his own Al TV specials.
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The Weird Al Star Fund is a campaign started by Yankovic’s fans to get him a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Their mission is to “solicit, collect, and raise the necessary money, & to compile the information needed for the application to nominate “Weird Al” Yankovic for a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.” Fans worldwide have sent donations to raise the US$15,000 needed for a nomination. In addition to the preferred method of cash donations, many methods were used to raise money for the cause, such as a live benefit show held April 11, 2006, and selling merchandise on the official website and eBay, including T-shirts, calendars, and cookbooks. On May 26, 2006, the campaign hit the then-$15,000 target, just five days before the May 31 deadline to submit the necessary paperwork. However, Yankovic was not included on the list of inductees for 2007. On February 9, 2007, the Hollywood Chamber Of Commerce raised the price to sponsor a new star to $25,000 and as such the Fund is accepting donations again. Yankovic’s application was resubmitted for consideration in 2007, but he was not included among 2008’s inductees.
Similar to the Weird Al Star Fund, a second fan-driven campaign called “Make the Rock Hall ‘Weird'” has tried to enshrine him into Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, for which he has been eligible since 2004. Previous attempts to raise awareness for the campaign & support Yankovic’s nomination included a petition drive from 2006 to 2007, which raised over 9000 signatures; an art competition in 2005; additionally, a documentary film about the campaign is currently being developed. In addition to these efforts, an ongoing campaign is underway in which supporters of Yankovic’s nomination are requested to send “sincere, thoughtful” letters to the Rock Hall Foundation’s headquarters in New York. The Hall has not considered Yankovic for nomination since the campaign started in 2004.
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