Ed McMahon has an unexpected new job title: rapper.
The 85-year-old former “Tonight Show” sidekick will star in two viral rap videos for FreeCreditReport.com, a financial Web site owned by credit bureau Experian. The videos feature McMahon wearing a tracksuit, being chauffeured around Los Angeles in a Cadillac Escalade golf cart and waxing lyrical about his very public financial troubles.
“I knew I could sing the blues, but I didn’t know I could rap,” McMahon said Wednesday.
The videos will appear online in October.
Charles Harris, FreeCreditReport.com’s vice president of strategic marketing, said the company sought out McMahon to star in the humorous spots after seeing him openly discuss his finances on “Larry King Live.” Harris said McMahon represents “a man who is taking charge.”
In the first video, McMahon — who once pitched the American Family Publishing sweepstakes — and a bodyguard are cruising through a neighborhood looking for sweepstakes winners to ask for some money back, but McMahon doesn’t actually go through with it. In the second spot, McMahon dons a new suit after undergoing a financial and emotional makeover.
“When I retired, I was famous,” McMahon raps in the video. “I had money and glory/I bought a house for 6 mill/I thought nothing could touch me/Until my credit went south, and debt started to crunch me/Next thing I know, instead of playing gin rummy, I was scrambling just to make ends meet/It wasn’t funny.”
After being joined by two scantily clad women, McMahon continues: “Got a bump from the media chumps, but that was temporary/Wife with bad credit was scary, so I got wise/I may have fallen, but I got back up/Now I’m back on the attack, like a ninja swinging nunchucks/I told the haters, ‘Go on, take a hike’/It’s my show now, and I can do what I like.”
McMahon said he spent one day in the studio recording the rap. He said he hopes his participation will inspire viewers to learn from his mistakes and become more aware about their finances.
When asked if he would consider releasing a full-length rap album, McMahon said: “Not immediately.”
In June, the former “Star Search” host revealed he was fighting foreclosure after falling $644,000 behind on mortgage payments on his Beverly Hills home. Last month, he agreed to a deal with a private buyer. McMahon said Wednesday the deal has not been completed, and he’s not sure what he and his wife, Patricia, will do after the sale.
“We’re in this together,” said McMahon. “We’re a team. We’re going to solve it together. We’re going to work this out. I’m very optimistic. I’m an old Marine. I’ve been in two wars and have 85 combat missions under my belt. I’ve got a background of looking for the good stuff, going for the best way. My wife is with me 100 percent.”
It’s not the first job for McMahon following his money problems. In July, the former “Tonight Show” sidekick reprised his role as pitchman with commercial segments alongside talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel on “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” One of the spots featured McMahon teaching Kimmel how to sell a product. Another had the duo preparing for a road trip to Mexico.