Here Come The 123s
Studio album by They Might Be Giants
|Release date|| February 5, 2008
Release details / collectors: Show | Hide
|Tracks||24||Last album||The Else|
|Label||Idlewild / Disney Sound||Length||44:32||Next album||Here Comes Science|
Here Come The 123s is the thirteenth album from They Might Be Giants, and the band's third full-length children's album. The release is a DVD/CD set, the sequel (or prequel, according to Flansburgh) to 2005's Here Come The ABCs DVD/CD set. It is the band's first album to have won a Grammy Award.
The title "Here Come the 123s" had been mentioned (often jokingly) in several interviews since the release of Here Come the ABCs, but was first officially revealed as the title for an upcoming project by the band on tmbg.com in November 2006. According to an April 9, 2007 Billboard article, the DVD was slated to contain "an hour of original music plus videos specially commissioned by the duo," much like the Here Come The ABCs DVD. On August 20, more information about the project was made public by Amazon.com and Disney Sound, including the set's release date, cover artwork, and track listing. The album was originally set to be released on October 2, 2007, but on September 15, 2007, the release date was revised to February 5, 2008. The delay may have been related to the fact that the band was in the midst of their 2007 fall tour promoting The Else, as the DVD had been authored on August 29, thus remaining unchanged between the two planned release dates.
On March 17, 2010, the album was released in Japan as a DVD-only release, with Here Come The ABCs being released the same day. The track listing was identical to the initial release. Both DVDs had English and Japanese subtitles, the latter of which were literal translations of the lyrics, rather than translations which fit the rhythm of the song. This was due to both DVDs being repurposed to help Japanese children learn English, and the release was partially motivated out of complaints from Japanese parents that the release of Here Comes Science in the region was only in English. Neither ABCs nor 123s did well there, partially due to the relative obscurity of They Might Be Giants, as well as the lyrics being too complicated in some songs.
Disney's network targeted at younger children, Playhouse Disney (now known as Disney Junior), began airing videos from Here Come the 123s in November 2007. The rotation included "One Everything" and "Zeroes". Over the next few weeks, a wider selection of videos also began airing. In January 2008, Disney and the band began releasing weekly episodes of the They Might Be Giants Friday Night Family Podcast, which featured one video per week from the 123s, and sometimes videos from the ABCs. The podcast was hosted by The Puppet Johns, the Johns' puppet alter egos. These puppets were constructed by Robin Goldwasser.
Several of the videos feature animation by artists that have collaborated with TMBG on prior projects, including The Brothers Chaps ("Figure Eight"), Divya Srinivasan ("High Five!"), and Hine Mizushima ("The Secret Life Of Six"). In addition, The Puppet Johns and Deeply Felt Puppet Theater (also Goldwasser creations) make several appearances in the DVD's music videos.
The 123s spent eight weeks on the Billboard Top Internet Albums chart and nineteen weeks on the Billboard Top Kid Audio chart. It also spent one short week at slot #172 on The Billboard 200, making it TMBG's first children's album to crack that chart. It peaked at #9 on the Top Kid Audio chart, despite spending 8 weeks on the top of Amazon's sales charts for Children's Music. As of July 2008, it had sold 40,000 copies according to The Philadelphia Inquirer. Sales of the album helped They Might Be Giants to come in at #9 on "Billboard's Year-End Top Kids Artists of 2008" (based on album sales). Strong Amazon sales of the album also fueled a resurgence of interest in Here Come The ABCs, which climbed back to #2 on the Amazon Children's Music charts at one point.
The album was certified Gold by the RIAA, in the Video Longform format, on January 26, 2012. To achieve certification in this category, the DVD has sold more than 50,000 copies.
Later that year, the album won a "Silver Honor" at the 2008 Parents' Choice Awards in the "Music" category. In 2009 it earned TMBG their second Grammy, winning the "Best Musical Album For Children" category.
CD & DVD Track Listings
|1||Here Come The 123s||0:08|
|5||Triops Has Three Eyes||2:35|
|8||The Secret Life Of Six||2:01|
|10||Seven Days of the Week (I Never Go To Work)||1:54|
|12||Pirate Girls Nine||1:21|
|13||Nine Bowls Of Soup||2:12|
|15||One Dozen Monkeys||1:34|
|16||Eight Hundred And Thirteen Mile Car Trip||0:57|
|18||I Can Add||2:04|
|21||Ooh La! Ooh La!||1:56|
Bonus Tracks from TV (all editions)
|22||Heart Of The Band||1:39|
|24||Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Theme||0:57|
Amazon.com Exclusive CD & DVD Bonus Tracks
CD Track Listing
|25||One Two Three Four||1:12
|26||John Lee Supertaster (Live)||3:08
|27||Bed Bed Bed Bed Bed (Live)||2:13
DVD Track Listing
|25||One Two Three Four||1:12
- The Amazon.com exclusive version of Here Come the 123s includes three bonus CD tracks ("One Two Three Four," "John Lee Supertaster (Live)," and "Bed, Bed, Bed (Live)") and a bonus music video on the DVD ("One Two Three Four").
- At the August 1, 2007 Bowery Ballroom show, TMBG's rendition of "Bed Bed Bed Bed Bed" was recorded as an Amazon-exclusive bonus track for the CD. The Amazon bonus track live version of "John Lee Supertaster" is from the August 14, 2004 San Fransisco performance.
- The songs "Here Come The 123s," "Ten Mississippi," and "Nonagon" are on the track listing on the disc but not on the back cover's track listing.
- An official press release for Here Come the 123s is archived here.