Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Go to your darkest inner place watching Sugar Ray invite fans onstage to “rap”

Screenshot: YouTube

They say “hell is other people,” and it’s a truism verified in this horrific video of Sugar Ray’s Mark McGrath inviting people onstage to freestyle. The time: whenever Sugar Ray was popular. The place: some sort of shitty all-day festival. The guest emcees: a shrieking woman and some guy rapping “Ice Ice Baby,” which is not a freestyle and barely a rap.

As edited by Everything is Terrible!, the clip has a nightmarish, elliptical quality. In fact, McGrath, the preening, spiked frontman, almost becomes a sympathetic character, burying his face in his hands as the shrieks clang around him. One almost wonders if they clang for him still.


Sugar Ray had a surprising amount of hits around the turn of the millennium, but they’ve since devolved into one of the easiest evocations of that era’s sunny, TRL-friendly, bowling-shirt clad SoCal culture. Their onetime fellow travelers Smash Mouth have become the muse for some of the internet’s most horrifically low-brow creations; now, it appears, the hivemind turns its incinerating gaze upon Sugar Ray.

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