1. Pack in as much information as you can: the content needs to be both funny and a tribute too!
The information which you, the organiser, friends, family and colleagues supply, will form the whole content of the song. I will not be able to make anything up!! You can gather the information by using the form I have supplied or you may wish to contact others informally or through a special Facebook page etc.
2. However it is important to keep the event a surprise!!
3. Include a bio-pic of every part of their life. Your special person will have got to know many different people from the varied aspects to their lives: so contributions from family, friends and colleagues will shed light on different phases of his/her life.
4. Keep it funny!! But you will need to decide if everyone will be able to appreciate it, so some private jokes shared may be tricky to include!
5. Straightforward historical detail about the town of birth etc, early school life and childhood might well be relevant and funny/poignant moments recalled.
A useful tip is to link in any information about the music of the time. Here’s an example from “Life on Mars”:
“He was born in 63
The Beatles sang “Please Please Me“
But his musical tastes were more
Secretly ELO at core”
6. Calamities and tragedy should be avoided unless there is a genuinely funny side which your special person would also find amusing to hear about again!!
7. Information about past relationships could also complicate your story: it rather depends on how sensitive everyone is about them. I heard the story of the man marrying for the third time who chose to have as the opening dance at their reception, the song: “Once, twice, three times a lady!!” That needs a very tolerant new wife to appreciate the joke!
Here is an example of how a very long courtship ended up in a wedding again from a gversion based on “Life on Mars”.
“Was a god-awful long affair
With the girl with the blondish hair
And his love for all things français
Led to xxxxx and their wedding day”
8. Information about personality traits is a rich vein to tap: the more people who contribute their different takes on this the better they are balanced by an overall positive take on things.
For example, in this song “My Favourite Things”, the party person’s attention to detail about being prepared for all eventualities, with a bag full of emergency supplies is counterbalanced by finding out that her passport was out of date at the airport:
“Known to be ready for most anything,
Plastic bags, candles and suitable drinks.
But do not forget that when you go away,
The date on your passport should not be today.”
9. Information which results in contrasting ideas can be funny too.
Here’s an example from “Livin La Vida”:
“He’s into salsa dancing, wiggle hips and shake your bum.
Tight fitting sexy trousers. Oh no! Hold in your tum!”
References to increasing age are to be carefully managed, and must take into account the sense of humour of the person concerned. In this example, the party person was amenable to the idea of getting older!
“His name is xxxxxx or xxx for short
Now we’re told he’s got to forty: He’s much younger than we thought!”
10. If someone is of more mature years, a safer bet would be:
“We salute you now our dear Grandad, Ern
On having 80 candles now to burn!!”
You will be asked to check for such sensitive issues as these when you receive your first draft!!
Please see the examples available on the website to gain more inspiration! So please complete your information forms as fully as possible!!