Like a Boss
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|"Like a Boss"|
|Song by The Lonely Island featuring Seth Rogen|
|from the album Incredibad|
|Genre||Comedy hip hop|
|Label||Universal Republic Records|
|Songwriter(s)||Andy Samberg, Akiva Schaffer, Jorma Taccone, A. Banks|
|Producer(s)||Rick tha Rular|
"Like a Boss" is a song written and recorded by comedy hip hop troupe The Lonely Island featuring Canadian comedian Seth Rogen for their debut studio album Incredibad. The song is a parody of the first official single from Slim Thug's first album Already Platinum, also named "Like a Boss". The song follows a businessman narrator played by Andy Samberg that goes about activities "like a boss".
Initially aired on Saturday Night Live, the song had multiple versions, including an audio-only version that did not have the celebrity interviewer and a clean version that was produced in both audio and video. In 2011, it was also subject to a lawsuit from the producers of the song, who claimed they never received proper compensation for their work.
"Like a Boss" premiered as a Saturday Night Live Digital Short on April 4, 2009. In the song, Andy Samberg is a businessman, evidently in middle management, having a performance review. The reviewer asks him to describe the things he does in an average day, and does so for the remainder of the song in his trademark aggressive style while repeating the lyric "like a boss" after every activity.
He first lists activities which are fairly mundane, such as communicating to bigger bosses in corporate headquarters, approving memorandums, remembering birthdays, leading a workshop, and promoting synergy. However, the song takes a foul turn after he mentions his female subordinate Deborah, whom he repeatedly pursues, rejecting him, causing him to "swallow sadness", face a sexual harassment lawsuit and be passed up for a promotion. The ensuing depression leads to him binge drinking vodka and defecating on Deborah's desk. The activities Samberg's character describes become more and more bizarre, such as calling a sex line, "cry[ing] deeply", demanding a refund, attempting suicide with a gun only to back out in fear, vomiting on Deborah's desk, jumping out of a window, "suck[ing] a dude's dick", purchasing cocaine, crashing his car,"suck[ing] his own dick," eating chicken strips, castrating himself, blacking out in a sewer, meeting a giant fish which he evidently "fucks its brains out", turning into a jet, "bombing the Russians", crashing into the sun, and finally dying. Everything described is done "like a boss." It ends with the reviewer trying to confirm some of the more bizarre events with Samberg, who confirms that he does daily chop off his testicles and die, but denies ever having said he fellates himself. While Samberg then keeps repeating the words "I'm the boss," the reviewer leaves the room, understandably annoyed and disgusted. The video ends with the giant fish delivering the final words "like a boss."
The video features Seth Rogen, recording over the vocals done by Akiva Schaffer on the single. The video adds additional visuals not included with the words of the song. It ends with Samberg's tombstone being shown (which has the epitaph "He was da Best"), and a skeptical Rogen trying to confirm some of the more bizarre events with Samberg. The "bomb the Russians" part shows Samberg attacking St. Basil's Cathedral.
The video features brief cameo appearances from Saturday Night Live writer John Mulaney as the worker that Samberg micromanages, Casey Wilson as the woman giving Samberg the memo, Kristen Wiig as Samberg's office crush Debra, Jason Sudeikis as Samberg's boss and Bill Hader as the man on whom Samberg performs fellatio. It also features Jorma Taccone as the man giving him the lawsuit, and Akiva Schaffer selling him the gun. Abby Elliott and Bobby Moynihan can be seen in the video as background dancers.
Prior to the release of the video on Saturday Night Live, the term "Like a Boss" was not often searched for or used in social context. Though it was indeed searched for prior to the release of the video, the term clearly spiked at release and peaked on Google on April 29, 2009, hitting a 100 on the Google Trend chart. It has also become popular on social media sites such as Twitter Tumblr, and Facebook, where it is a popular hashtag to cite a task completed, goal achieved or successful action that someone is proud of doing. It has also led to parody videos such as "Like a Bus", where a bus is shown flying through traffic and often bad weather conditions with no regard or slowing for the bad conditions. On 22 October 2012, "Like A Boss" surpassed 100 million views. The video was featured by The Huffington Post, and TV Guide.
In November 2011 a production team from St. Louis filed charges against Andy Samberg and Co., NBC Universal and Universal Republic Records. At the root of the suit was the claim that Monique “Foxx StarStrukk” Hines and Aleric “Rick Tha Rular” Banks submitted the audio track for "Like a Boss" along with the audio track that would become another hit for The Lonely Island, "Shy Ronnie". The duo claimed that, through a mutual connection in 2008, they knew Samberg and submitted their tracks for inclusion in the upcoming debut album, Incredibad. The Lonely Island then recorded their own lyrics on top of the audio track to create the songs. The duo from StarStrukk productions claimed that they were never compensated properly for their work, both in money and recognition / notoriety. Banks claimed that originally he signed an agreement giving him a 50% ownership of the song, given his position as writer and producer. According to his lawsuit, he received a response from Universal Music Group that gave him only a 25% interest in "Like a Boss." Banks, however, claims that he has yet to see any sort of a royalty for the song. Another track from the duo was later featured on the band's 2011 album Turtleneck & Chain in the song "Shy Ronnie 2: Ronnie & Clyde."
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On the NBC version of this digital short, the part where Andy has a gun in his mouth and whines, "Oh fuck, man, I can't fuckin' do it. Shit!" had the shot of Andy with the gun in his mouth shortened and redubbed the line to, "Oh crap, man, I can't effin' do it. Ugh!!"
- Van Dril, Eric (5 April 2009). "'SNL' Digital Short: 'Like A Boss' (With Video)". The Ripcord. Archived from the original on 11 April 2009. Retrieved 2014-06-21.
- "Google Trends - websearch interest: like a boss - Worldwide, 2004 - present". Google Trends.
- "Twitter / search - #likeaboss". Twitter.com.
- "like a boss on Tumblr". Tumblr.com.
- "#likeaboss". Facebook.com.
- "Like a BUS! Playlist". Youtube.com.
- "Like A Boss: SNL Digital Short (VIDEO)". The Huffington Post. 6 May 2009. Retrieved 2014-06-23.
- DiNunno, Gina. "Today's News: Our Take - Seth Rogen and Andy Samberg in SNL Digital Short "Like a Boss"". TV Guide.com. Retrieved 23 June 2014.
- Kaufman, Gill. "'SNL,' Andy Samberg Sued By Producers over 'Like A Boss' - MTV". MTV News. Retrieved 11 July 2014.