Don’t be shocked if there’s an unfamiliar face at your next virtual happy hour. No, you are not being “Zoom bombed.” Surprise! It’s “Finally Aaron.” Still nothing? Okay, he’s the 30-year-old Instagrammer behind the wildly popular “Golden Girls Gospel Remix”? From 2016? Right. But thanks to quarantining, TikTok and a little help from the “Today” show, Aaron Scott, the musician behind the four-year-old viral video, is in the spotlight again.
The soulful rendition of everyone’s favorite theme song is enjoying a new life online, transporting us back to simpler times filled with one-liners from Sophia. So while sheltering at home in Pittsburgh, Scott, a choir director and music teacher, is spending his newfound free time singing “Happy Birthday” to strangers on Cameo who love his ’80s-theme-song remixes and quietly sitting on your video call waiting for you to recognize him.
Take us back to 2016, please! How did all this start?
I never expected for people to even like the original video. I was actually watching the show and did a 15-second clip and then people were like, “We need more!” What else could you add? I’m just showing you what I do when I’m bored. One day I was like maybe there is more. So I posted it and told a friend, “I’m going to delete this, this is stupid.” The next day I had to turn my phone off. It. Blew. Up.
So you didn’t set out to be a social media star?
Not really. I was just singing in church and around the city. I was a trainer at Target and people would walk over and sneak selfies. I’m like, huh? I did not expect this at all.
Let’s talk about giving credit where it’s due. Recently TikTok has given the remix new life with users lip-syncing to your voice but not linking back to you. That has to be tough, to say the least.
I don’t need the attention, but when it comes to the comments you see, like, “Oh, my God, your voice is amazing,” and then the user comments with a smiley face like, “Oh thanks.” You know, just taking the credit for something that you’ve done. It can get annoying. But now it’s spread like wildfire, so I don’t even try to keep up. It’s too far gone now.
You can’t respond to everything.
One lady even wrote on my YouTube channel, “I pray you’re paying the lady who did this originally and I hope she comes for her money.” And I was like, “Please give her my email address, I want to give her every dime I can.” She eventually did her research and apologized. Mmhmmm. I try not to be rude.
You’re actually a “Golden Girls” fan.
It’s because of my mom. She was a huge fan. I mean huge fan. One day when I was maybe 9 or 10, I heard my mom laughing so hard. I went downstairs and Sophia was snapping out on somebody. So I sat down and ever since then I’ve been a huge fan. I have every season on DVD. I have T-shirts. I have puzzles. “Golden Girls” cereal.
Why do you think people love it so much?
That was a simpler time. People were being edgy, but there wasn’t too much drama going on. It makes people feel calm. Let me just get lost in a few episodes and get away from the real work for a minute. They’re like my white aunts.
What are some of your favorite moments from the show?
Oh man. There’s one called “Long Day’s Journey into Marinara,” where Sophia’s sister from Sicily comes into town and they’re trying to convince her to move back to America. They go at it so bad. Sophia tells her, “May the hair on your chin grow to meet the hair on your nose.” Then there’s “Forgive Me, Father,” where Dorothy has a crush on a teacher that she doesn’t know is a priest. He comes over to dinner in his clergy clothes and none of the ladies know how to respond. Of course, Sophia goes off: “Didn’t I tell you never date a priest?” I don’t know, it’s just funny stuff.
And of course the theme song is a bop.
The original song by Andrew Gold is super plain, super proper. “The Golden Girls” actually remixed it first. They added a female singer and she’s doing a couple tiny riffs. It’s just so catchy. You hear that “dun dun dun dun” and the beat comes in. People sing it to me all the time. When I was a bartender, biker guys would come in the bar and say, “Oh, thank you for being a friend, my man.” It’s just … yeah. I got to take a break from it sometimes.
People still want you to sing it on command years after the fact?
A lot of people want you to sing it to prove that it’s you. Not even being funny, you can’t just go into hollering like that. You’ll break something.
With so much nostalgia brewing right now, there have to be other theme songs worth remixing. What’s next?
I did “Friends” because I just didn’t want to be a one-hit wonder. I love the one from the show “Amen,” and people are like, ‘You should do that one.’ But I have to be smart. You can’t touch everything.