ICYMI: The 90s’ Most Unlikely Hit (with Baz Luhrmann)

July 05, 2022
53 min
Download
ICYMI: The 90s’ Most Unlikely Hit (with Baz Luhrmann)

ICYMI: The 90s’ Most Unlikely Hit (with Baz Luhrmann)

July 05, 2022
53 min
Download
See all episodes
CATEGORY: Music
In 1999 filmmaker Baz Luhrmann released the song “Everybody’s Free To Wear Sunscreen,” a 7-minute-long graduation speech set to downtempo electronic music. It was a highly unlikely hit that made its way across continents and eventually into the ears of a young Avery Trufelman via the album NOW That’s What I Call Music Volume 2. For over 20 years, Trufelman has applied the song’s advice to her daily life: “wear sunscreen… be nice to your siblings… do one thing every day that scares you.” This unusual song has left a lasting impression, and yet for Trufelman, it makes no sense that “The Sunscreen Song” was commercially successful. We investigate the song’s many architects — novelist Kurt Vonnegut, Chicago Tribune columnist Mary Schmich and Baz Luhrmann himself — to unpack one of the internet’s first conspiracy theories that turned into Billboard’s greatest outlier.  We need your help. We are conducting a short audience survey to help plan for our future and hear from you. To participate, head to vox.com/podsurvey, and thank you! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices