If you’ve seen the opening credits for “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” you’ve heard the music of Nerf Herder. The Santa Barbara “geek rock” band got its name from the scruffy alien Princess Leia pretends not to like in The Empire Strikes Back, and the group’s best known non-Buffy track was a novelty song about Van Halen. This was all part of a larger SoCal scene that shared members and shows and houses with The Rentals, Lagwagon, Weezer, Psoma, Ridel High, the Lapdancers, Popsicko and other such groups popular with the college-educated irony crowd. The late 1990s and early 2000s, everybody!
Since 2008, Nerf Herder’s Parry Gripp has also worked as a composer of short songs to accompany animal videos on YouTube. This is an actual job, in 2013, although Gripp says the big entertainment corporations are fast moving in on this previously DIY genre. How it works is when you write the music and have the rights to the video, YouTube pays you for views! It is a kind of magic. How many people have watched and listened to these videos? 88,479,703, as of today.