The truth is Greg Peterson can’t stand LMFAO’s song and video, “Sexy and I Know It.”
It was playing on a Manhattan radio station one night in late May when he and some friends had gathered at a local Sonic to unwind as his junior year at Kansas State University came to an end. That song came on, and he groaned.
But as the song kept playing, the ag-journalism major -– gifted in music and on a mission to spread the word of Kansas agriculture -– sipped his milkshake and was inspired when the chorus played. He switched the words, “I’m Sexy and I Know It,” to “I’m Farming and I Know It.”
The second time the chorus came on, he thought, “No, I’ve got one better: ‘I’m Farming and I Grow It.’ ”
Before long, he had a great parody. Now he has a video that has gone viral on YouTube and Facebook.
“It turned out to be epic,” Peterson said.
When he went home from college to his family’s fourth-generation farm near Assaria, Peterson talked his kid brothers, Nathan, 18, and Kendal, 15, into singing and filming a video of the three of them together, rapping their farming mission on the family’s Saline County farm.
Their sister, Laura, helped shoot some of the video from the break of the dawn, as the brothers buck hay, feed cattle, drive combines and tractors, until sunset, when the three of them walk off into the wheat stubble. Mom and Dad are in it, and even Grandma had a say.
“I have a hard time understanding all this electronic stuff,” says Eunice Peterson, the brothers’ 88-year-old grandmother. “But it is all very exciting. I am thrilled for the guys.”
The Petersons posted the video on Monday. Within 24 hours, it went viral on YouTube and Facebook, garnering nearly 400,000 views as of Wednesday evening.
“When I step up to the bunk, yeah, this is what I see: All the hungry cattle are staring at me. I got passion for my plants and I ain’t afraid to show it. Show it. Show it. I’m farming and I grow it. I’m farming and I grow it.”
“My brothers thought it was funny,” Greg Peterson said. “We all like rapping.”
True to the farm experience, the Peterson brothers worked 15-hour days cutting wheat and feeding the cattle in the midst of shooting the video.
“We started halfway through wheat harvest and I got them up at 6 a.m., they were so mad at me and thought I was so stupid,” Greg Peterson said of the sunrise scenes in the video, the ones with crickets and a single meadowlark singing somewhere in the distance.
“I told them to just trust me. The reason it is so silly is we were so tired.”
They’ve posted other family videos, but this is the first to go viral.
On Tuesday, Greg Peterson’s phone and computer lit up. He received hundreds of texts, tweets and Facebook postings from people wanting to find out more about the Peterson brothers. They’ve been invited to the national FFA convention later this year in Kentucky.
“It’s definitely been a dream,” he said.
It’s also been the dream for all three brothers to work together farming.
“When we were little kids, we’d all play with our toy tractors,” Greg Peterson said. “We’d farm together with our tractors on the carpet. The dream was we’d all farm together with Dad.
“Who knows what is going to happen now that we are famous.”