“SNL” had a surprisingly strong showing last night (February 18) with an episode hosted by former cast member Maya Rudolph. It also featured a roster of guest stars, including Justin Timberlake, Amy Poehler, Paul Simon, Kate Upton and Bill O’Reilly.
One of the stand out sketches of the night featured new parents Jay-Z and Beyonce (played by Rudolph and Jay Pharoah) introducing their daughter Blue Ivy to celebrity friends like Prince, Nicki Minaj, Taylor Swift, LL Cool J, Brangelina and Timberlake as Bon Iver frontman Justin Vernon.
“Sorry I’m late, uh whatever,” he said after being announced by “white butler” (Andy Samberg). “Just wandering barefoot in the woods of Wisconsin. I fashioned this guitar out of a canoe and I wrote a song for your baby.”
He went on to sing his version of the Grammy-nominated song “Holocene” as a lullaby for Blue Ivy, but ended up putting himself to sleep before being carried out of the room.
Video: “SNL” sketch – ‘Jay-Z and Beyonce’s Baby’
Vernon took the impersonation in stride, tweeting his approval as the show aired: “Holy shit, I was watching SNL and JT did a Bon Iver hilarious thing!” he wrote. “Maya Rudolph saying “bon iver” is enough. I can die now!!!”
“JT! SNL peeps… that was hilarious,” he continued. “Armisen as prince… Also, i WISH i looked that good bald. That was it… the most surreal thing! ever! JT was playing that guitar part well! I was red-face-embarrassed but laughing my ass off the whole time!”
He went on to reassure his Twitter followers that he was in no way offended by the parody: “To all the folks racing to our defense right now…I assure you …ITS ALL GOOD!”
Timberlake even held up an “I Love Bon Iver” sign during the show’s closing credits. Bon Iver performed on “SNL” just two weeks ago before taking home two Grammys last Sunday for Best New Artist and Best Alternative Music Album.
It was recently announced that the band will perform at this summer’s Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in Tennesee along with Radiohead, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Beach Boys, Phish and Foster the People, among many others.
Other sketches last night included “SNL’s” take on the Jeremy Lin-ESPN scandal, the Obamas transformed into “The Cosby Show,” a special “President’s Day” edition of “What Up With That?” featuring Upton and O’Reilly, the return of “Bronx Beat” and Rudolph as poet Maya Angelou pulling pranks on some of her famous friends, plus two performances from Sleigh Bells.
“SNL” returns March 3 with host Lindsay Lohan and musical guest Jack White.