Friday, January 09, 2015

Starting the Year Right!

Happy New Year!!!
And what better way to kick off the new year than with some of the typical weirdness I've come to expect when I see the artist credit of "Phil Celia" on the old time Tin Pan Alley label.
The song title is enough to draw one in "A Fat Man in a Compact Car", and the song doesn't disappoint. Set to what at first sounds like a march beat, it's actually (to my ears) styled as a Lou Monte styled Italian novelty, although largely minus the ethnic accent. The words do the title justice, too, with the following couplet being perhaps the high point:
"If You're Obese
You Need Some Grease..."
The ending is a spectacular failure - clearly, Phil and the band have two different ideas of how the repetition of the final lines was supposed to work.

On the flip side, we find one of the shortest song-poems I've ever heard or seen on a 45 RPM single (I think the magnificent Joe Stantan performance of "A Has-Been" may be shorter, but that was on an EP).
This song, on the other hand, is the only thing on this side of the record, and it runs 75 seconds (the entire 45, including both songs, runs three minutes, ten seconds - I bet that's a record!).
We've got the same 6/8 rhythm here, only in a higher key, and definitely a march beat in this case. The lyricist actually squeezed in quite a bit of information (and a moment of casual racism) into his brief creation. And the last three seconds are worth the price of admission!


1 comment:

Timmy said...

Well, these are wonderful, in a Dego sorta way. They have that Italiano bop thing goin' for them, harkening back to a more charming, less harmful, and more importantly; political politeness was not a concern, as we still had freedom of speech, thought AND spirit (much like the singer, singing these songs), era.