‘We’re the Shrek band’: Smash Mouth’s Paul DeLisle embraces ‘All Star’ legacy 20 years later


The years actually do begin coming they usually do not cease coming – Tuesday marks 20 years since “Shrek” hit film theaters throughout the US.

Although rumors have persisted by means of the years that Smash Mouth, the band behind the 1999 hit “All Star,” is sad with being related to the movie, co-founder and bassist Paul DeLisle tells USA TODAY he is “very proud” to be part of “Shrek.” 

The groundbreaking animated movie in regards to the titular ogre (Mike Myers) who goes on a quest with a donkey (Eddie Murphy) to rescue Princess Fiona (Cameron Diaz) first hit U.S. theaters on Might 18, 2001. Twenty years later, lots of the franchise’s handpicked tracks, together with Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” and David Bowie’s “Modifications,” are recognized to followers as “Shrek songs.”

“That is how we’re recognized: youngsters are like, ‘look, it is the ‘Shrek’ guys,’ ” DeLisle says of the group, initially shaped in 1994. “We’re the ‘Shrek’ band. What are you gonna do? You may’t combat it. I simply embrace it. You have to be a superb sport about it.” 

Initially, Smash Mouth’s producer Eric Valentine approached the musicians to see if they’d put collectively a canopy of The Monkees’ “I am a Believer.” DeLisle remembers they “rapidly labored up a therapy… and simply recorded it on the spot.” It wasn’t till later that “All Star,” a last-minute addition to their second studio album, 1999’s “Astro Lounge,” and already a success by itself, was added into the soundtrack’s combine. 

He remembers being “more than happy” with their recording of “I am a Believer” however then “not listening to about it for some time.” 

“The way in which individuals defined (the film) … it sounded prefer it may probably be horrible,” he says. “Then Eddie Murphy got here in to report, and I am like, ‘OK, that is type of an enormous deal.’ After which a yr later, it is the most important film ever within the historical past of the universe.” 

Certainly, “Shrek” turned an enormous phenomenon. Loosely primarily based on the 1990 image e-book by William Steig, the primary movie grossed greater than $484.4 million worldwide on the field workplace and spawned three sequels, a “Puss in Boots” spinoff and a Tony-nominated Broadway musical. Culturally, it subverted the fairytale style, making means for a brand new type of exploration into mainstream reimagining of folklore. It additionally launched a million bizarre memes.

Whereas “I am a Believer” was a memorable ending to the movie, it is “All Star” that is still essentially the most talked-about music second at present. The tune was a success already (it turned a Billboard No. 1 in the summertime of 1999), however “Shrek” solidified its legacy. 

Earlier than Smash Mouth watched the movie for the primary time, the band did not understand how very important their songs had been to the story: “All Star” serves because the viewers’s introduction to Shrek – an animated fairytale hero in contrast to any most had seen earlier than – because the inexperienced ogre units the scene in his swamp. By the top of the movie, “I am a Believer” provides every character the fortunately ever after that they had been in search of. 

“I believed love was solely true in fairytales / Meant for another person however not for me … However then I noticed her face / Now I am a believer,” Smash Mouth sings as Shrek and Fiona journey off into the sundown on their honeymoon in a Cinderella-esque onion-turned-carriage. 

However what made “Shrek” administrators Andrew Adamson and Vicky Jenson assume a tune by an alt-rock band could be excellent for his or her cartoon ogre film? 

“I am unsure why. It is a very constructive tune with a really encouraging lyric, ? And this will sound unusual, however it may need one thing to do with our singing type of vaguely resembles Shrek,” DeLisle jokes, referencing frontman Steve Harwell. “He is type of Shrek-ish himself and ever since then, I do not assume we have performed a present in 20 years the place there is not somebody within the viewers dressed up like Shrek or with a Shrek signal or one thing.” 

Initially, former Smash Mouth guitarist and songwriter Greg Camp, who wrote “All Star,” was “hesitant” in regards to the tune getting used for the movie, DeLisle says, however ultimately got here round.

“I feel he is modified his thoughts now,” DeLisle provides. “On the time, I feel he may need felt that we had been perhaps dropping some (road cred) or one thing, however I by no means noticed it that means. I by no means had an issue with it. And I do not assume that lasted too lengthy, as a result of as soon as everybody noticed the film it was exhausting to argue that we made the proper alternative.” 

By way of the years, Smash Mouth’s discography has landed into numerous popular culture tasks, together with “The Simpsons,” “What’s New, Scooby-Doo?” and “Roswell.” However DeLisle says “Shrek” was “particular.” He would do all of it once more “in a heartbeat.” 

“It is such a beautiful American establishment that retains regenerating,” he says. “It is a great factor to be connected to, and (I am) very proud to be part of it.” 

This text initially appeared on USA TODAY: ‘Shrek’ is 20: Smash Mouth’s Paul DeLisle finally embraces legacy



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