Blender Writer Sets Record for ‘Built This City’ Listens


Late last week, Blender writer Russ Heller was prepping to enter a plexiglass soundbooth in an attempt to set a world record for repeatedly listens to Starship’s 1985 smash hit “We Built This City” — the song deemed worst song ever last year by editors of the magazine. To set the record, Heller had to listen to the song 324 times in a 24-hour period.

Well, he did it. FishbowlNY caught up with bad music’s answer to David Blaine:

FBNY: How did you prepare?

Heller: I vehemently boycotted hearing the song beforehand. Everyone I told about the event tried to play it for me, but keeping it fresh was important. If I was already sick of the song going in, I was doomed.

FBNY: Did you ever come close to quitting?

Heller: I was always going to finish. If this was worth doing it was worth doing right. I did have some moments during the night when the physical and mental strain, combined with my absurd situation were a lot to handle. I think insanity might be a natural defense mechanism. I’m still seeking confirmation on whether that guy in the costume with the glowing red eyes was imaginary.

FBNY: What was the toughest part?

Heller: Sitting in a chair for a whole day is remarkably difficult. I was stiff three hours into it. Blender was very attentive to keeping me comfortable though. Anything short of earplugs was provided.

FBNY: Did you sleep at all?

Heller: This wasn’t the first all-nighter for me. I probably could have snuck a nap after the gates closed, were it not for the blaring song and my dedication to the principle of the challenge.

FBNY: How do you feel?

Heller: I’m glad I made it. It has taken a few days but the fog in my head has lifted. Blender said it best: I feel awesomely stupid.

FBNY: Do you have a better appreciation for the song and/or lyrics?

Heller: I have a better appreciation for why Blender voted it the worst. You really need to take it apart. This song wouldn’t have been a hit if it didn’t have a catchy chorus and it is really easy to ignore the rest. Digging deeper you have lyrics about playing a snake, corporation games and a traffic report. Good hook though.

FBNY: What’s next?

Heller: Would you believe that nobody has called yet to option the movie rights? That could be because I changed the answer tone on my cell phone so people hear “We Built This City” when they call. I should really get around to changing it back before my friends stop talking to me for good.

Blender Writer to Attempt Listening to ‘We Built This City’ 324 Times in 24 Hours