The Ultimate They Might Be Giants Quiz


By: Staff

4 Min Quiz

Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

Beloved by kids and nerds alike, They Might Be Giants has been making wacky music since 1982. But even if you're not a total TMBG freak, you might know the answers to some of these questions. Take a shot -- you could learn something!

Where did They Might Be Giants get its start?

Band founders John Linnell and John Flansburgh were friends in high school in Lincoln, Mass., but they didn't officially get together as a band until they were living in NYC.


Where did the name They Might Be Giants come from?

The band's moniker is from a 1971 movie of the same name -- which, in turn, comes from a line in "Don Quixote." The movie is about a man who thinks he's Sherlock Holmes.


What's the title of TMBG's first album?

TMBG's self-titled debut was released in 1986 and earned them a fairly immediate cult following.


What has been TMBG's biggest hit thus far?

"Birdhouse in Your Soul" got to No. 3 on the Modern Rock charts in 1990.


In the '80s, TMBG started a service through which fans could call a phone number and hear original TMBG songs. What was the service called?

Dial-A-Song was a huge hit with TMBG fans and cemented their cult following.


What's the color of the canary in "Birdhouse in Your Soul"?

"Blue canary in the outlet by the light switch, who watches over you."


TMBG wrote the theme song for which long-running sitcom?

"Boss of Me" was the "Malcolm in the Middle" theme song.


Which TMBG album had the unfortunate fate of being released on Sept. 11, 2001?

"Mink Car," TMBG's eighth studio album, was released on that fateful day.


What was TMBG's first kids' album?

"No!" was released in 2002.


In 2006, TMBG music was featured in commercials for which doughnut shop?

TMGB wrote 14 original songs for a Dunkin' Donuts ad campaign.


TMBG was supposed to write songs for this movie but were rejected because "they basically wanted the music to be more creepy."

John Flansburgh admitted in a 2008 interview that the powers-that-be behind "Coraline" had decided that TMGB wasn't creepy enough.


What's the theme of TMBG's 2009 kids' album?

TMBG released "Here Comes Science" in 2009. It includes the songs "I am a Paleontologist" and "The Bloodmobile."


What's on the cover of TMBG's 1988 album?

It's Louis T. Linnell and Brigadier General Ralph Hospital, the Johns' grandfathers, on the cover of the 1988 album.


True or false: TMBG started recording kids' music because they both have kids.

Linnell has a son (Henry), but Flansburgh doesn't have kids.


What international event do TMBG reference in "Ana Ng"?

"All alone at the '64 World's Fair / Eighty dolls yelling 'Small girl after all'"


There's a song about this U.S. president on the 2003 album "Factory Showroom."

"From Nashville came a dark horse riding up / He was James K. Polk, Napoleon of the Stump"


What's the title of the 2003 documentary about TMBG?

"Gigantic (A Tale of Two Johns)" is packed with interviews, videos and chats with celebrity TMBG fans.


How many Grammys have TMBG won?

TMBG have scored two Grammys -- in 2002, the got one for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, Television or other Visual Media ("Boss of Me") and in 2009, they got one for Best Musical Album for Children ("Here Come the 123s").


TMBG composes the music for what Comedy Central show?

"The Daily Show" host Jon Stewart is a big TMBG fan, and the Johns were glad to write the music for the show.


Which somewhat odd trio of actors does TMBG name as "influences" on the band's MySpace page?

Interesting. We can only assume from the name-dropping of Rourke, Busey and Young that TMBG finds inspiration in eccentric, troubled, law-breaking actors.


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