Listen up, people…that’s not an Elf walking down the street this holiday season.
It’s simply…a little dude, so show some respect!
In fact, little dudes aren’t gonna take it anymore.
At least, not ‘little dude’ actor-creator Ben Giroux.
Instead, he got together with his buddy, hip-hop artist Jensen Reed, and created the comedy rap “Little Dude Anthem.”
To pull it all together, this dynamic duo brought in singer Tamyra Gray, of American Idol fame, and a team of talent from the industry all eager to stand-up for the little guy. The result is a hysterical rallying call for those who often get overlooked – literally.
In this recent interview, Ben Giroux shares more about his “Little Dude Anthem.”
Give us an overview of your comedy song/video “Little Dude Anthem.”
BEN GIROUX: LITTLE DUDE ANTHEM is a comedic thug rap and a rallying war cry for short guys everywhere. I came up with the idea about five years ago while doing the stand-up comedy circuit in Los Angeles. Being a short guy can be tough — it’s easy to get overlooked personally and professionally. As a television actor, many of my roles are height-specific (elves, leprechauns, jockeys), and let’s face it…only one of those is even human.
So I teamed up with sensational indie hip-hop artist Jensen Reed in 2014. Over the course of a year, Jensen and I systematically turned my original stand-up material into rap lyrics. At the time, I was starring in a play with American Idol Season One star Tamyra Gray at the Pasadena Playhouse. I approached Tamyra to guest star in the music video and sing the track’s rhythmic choruses. Tamyra replied, “Next to collaborating with DMX, a rap video with Ben Giroux will be the craziest thing I’ve ever done”. And yes, it’s completely absurd that DMX and I were mentioned in the same sentence.
Next up, we brought cinematographer Matthew Roe onboard (DP for Michael Jackson, Moby, and Linkin Park), followed by Choreographer Morgan Larson (Teen Beach Movie franchise), actor David Mattey (Better Call Saul), Beat Boy Gev Manoukian (So You Think You Can Dance finalist), and Caitlynn Lawson (So You Think You Can Dance finalist).
What inspired you to create the song/video?
BG: Walking into a nightclub, when you’re male and 5’2”, is like entering an enchanted forrest. Only in this f’ed up reality, the trees are legs in stilettos. I need a team of sherpas and an oxygen tank just to look a girl in the eyes. Couple those personal experiences with my professional gigs playing Christmas elves on television, and the Napoleon Complex hits critical mass.
LITTLE DUDE ANTHEM is a comedic middle finger to those experiences and an over-the-top project encouraging people to embrace who they are.
This is a touchy subject, so what do you hope audiences take away from it – seriously?
BG: Look — everyone has something that makes them a little different. When I was thirteen, being shorter than everyone else felt like the end of the world. Then I realized that height is confidence — not inches. I hope this project makes people laugh and reminds them that all my little dudes are bad-asses.
When did you know that you wanted to team up with Jensen Reed to create it?
BG: About twelve seconds after hearing his music. Jensen and I are represented by the same voice-over agency in Los Angeles (DPN). I was telling one of our booth directors about the concept and he introduced us. Jensen and I are both anal-retentive perfectionists and we make a stellar producing team. He brings his incredible experience in the music industry to the table, while I bring my experience from the comedy world. Together, it’s a pretty lethal combination.
How did you get Tamyra Gray on board?
BG: Tamyra and I became fast friends while starring in Lythgoe Family Productions’ panto “Sleeping Beauty and Her Winter Knight” at the Pasadena Playhouse in December 2014. At the end of the first act, Tamyra sang “Hero” by Mariah Carrey while I stood on stage with her. I essentially had my own, personal Tamyra Gray concert every night. She’s the most extraordinary singer I’ve ever known, and I’m humbled she agreed to be in my completely ridiculous rap video. Aside from her immense vocal gifts, Tamyra is the sweetest human being you’ll ever cross paths with and an absolute joy to create with.
Are you planning any more comedy songs/videos in the near future?
BG: Jensen and I are already planning our next music/comedy collaboration. We hope to build a portfolio of rap comedy in the vein of The Lonely Island.
Anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
BG: Save a horse, ride a jockey, baby.
Thanks, Ben – for the laugh and the words to live by!
Watch “Little Dude Anthem” on YouTube at: http://youtube.com/BenGirouxTV