For those who have been unable to get the 1969 Mama Cass hit “Make Your Own Kind Of Music” out of their heads for the past week, it's either because of the Saturday Night Live Emma Stone sketch from the past weekend‘s episode, or because of the song's current ubiquity that is quite brilliantly spoofed in said SNL sketch.
Either way, the sketch has been much discussed and lauded on social media since its airing toward the end of the Emma Stone-hosted new episode last Saturday, and while completely original and inspired — it also can't help but bring to mind 2000's classic SNL Christopher Walken “More Cowbell” sketch.
The resemblance is so striking, the question has to be asked — is Emma Stone's memorable musical sketch parodying the Mama Cass hit a sequel of sorts to Christopher Walken's More Cowbell classic?
Both sketches involve an old-timey record executive brilliantly brought to life by the show's host, and a clever musical conceit. In More Cowbell, the always weird Christopher Walken played music producer Bruce Dickinson, who kept needling the band in his recording studio Blue Oyster Cult (affectingly brought to life by Will Ferrell, Jimmy Fallon, Horatio Sanz, Chris Kattan and Chris Parnell) to add “more cowbell” to its famously cowbell-heavy track “(Don't Fear) the Reaper.”
In the Emma Stone sketch, Stone has an Emmy-worthy turn as male music producer Mitch Lester, who can tell Mama Cass has a hit in “Make Your Own Kind Of Music.” Although it's an oddly specific kind of hit, explains Lester. One that will be popular for a few years, then be forgotten about for many decades, and then ultimately resurface as a slow-mo action movie montage soundtrack that pairs nicely with scenes of brutal on-screen violence (despite Mama Cass's pleas that “the song is about celebrating individuality, not zombies”).
As Stone brilliantly sells her examples, the audience (and viewer at home) nods along, realizing just how ubiquitous the song has become in movies, television and trailers.
In both sketches, the song at the heart of the parody is now forever linked to SNL, as the sketch will almost certainly be the first thing you think of the next time you hear the tune. And with More Cowbell having achieved mythical status as one of the most highly regarded sketches of all-time since its first airing, is a similar fate in store for Emma Stone's entry?
That remains to be determined, as does the question of if and when SNL will officially address whether the Emma Stone Mama Cass sketch is a sequel to More Cowbell. Maybe it's best not to think about it too closely and just make your own kind of music (while carrying out an elaborately choreographed slo-mo fight sequence, of course).