About a week ago, my good friend Bill - you all remember my good friend Bill - informed me that the legendary Dr. Demento, the King of Novelty Records and Comedy Recordings, is giving up his weekly radio show after nearly forty years on the air. Apparently, the Good Doctor will still be available somewhere online, but the traditional radio show is finished. Several web-based reviewers have expressed concern about the future of the novelty song and its place in the age of satellite radio and YouTube.
Well, for what it's worth, the novelty record will always have a home on my dinky little radio show; I try to play one on every show. Novelty records experienced their peak popularity in the 1950s and 1960s. Artists like Allan Sherman and Bobby "Boris" Pickett went to the top of the charts with records like "Hello Mudduh, Hello Fadduh!" and "The Monster Mash." There were also lots of great one-hit-wonders in the novelty business.
Today on "Strictly the Sixties," I showcased ten of the best novelty songs of the 1960s. In no particular order, that playlist included:
"Hello Mudduh, Hello Fadduh" by Allan Sherman
"Monster Mash" by Bobby "Boris" Pickett
"My Boyfriend Got A Beatle Haircut" by Donna Lynn
"The Lurch" by Ted Cassidy
"Tip Toe Through the Tulips" by Tiny Tim
"Snoopy vs the Red Baron" by The Royal Guardsmen
"Wild Thing" by Senator Bobby
"They're Coming To Take Me Away" by Napoleon XIV
"Gitarzan" by Ray Stevens
"The Martian Hop" by The Ran-Dells
It was lots of fun putting together this little tribute and I even got a few emails from listeners who enjoyed the set. So thanks to Dr. Demento and all of the artists who toiled in the realm of novelty. We're still listening and we're still laughing!