Christopher Walken Says the SNL "More Cowbell" Sketch "Ruined" His Life

Chris Kattan as Buck Dharma, Will Ferrell as Gene Frenkle, Chris Parnell as Eric Bloom, Horatio Sanz as Danny Miranda, Christopher Walken as Bruce Dickinson during "Behind the Music" skit on April 8, 2000 -- (Photo by: Mary Ellen Matthews/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images)
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(Mary Ellen Matthews/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images)

It was almost twenty years ago on April 8, 2000, when Saturday Night Live aired one of the greatest skits in the history of the show: the legendary "More Cowbell" sketch featuring guest host, Christopher Walken. Nearly a full two decades later, and Walken is still haunted by the sound of cowbells.

It was SNL alumni Will Ferrell who revealed Walken's plight during an interview with Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show. The skit parodying Blue Oyster Cult attempting to record "Don't Fear the Reaper" turned Walken's deadpan delivery as the band's cowbell-obsessed producer Bruce Dickenson was an instant cultural phenomenon. For the actor, it was the beginning of a waking nightmare.

“Here’s the crazy thing. I go to see Christopher Walken years later, in a play. I say hello to him backstage and he’s like, ‘You know, you’ve ruined my life,'” Ferrell said to Fallon, himself an SNL alum who was in the cowbell skit. “‘People during curtain call bring cowbells and ring them. The other day I went for Italian food lunch, and the waiter asked if I wanted more cowbell with my pasta bolognese.’ I think he’s really mad at me.” Watch the interview below.

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