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25 All-Time Novelty Hits

4.4 out of 5 stars 47 customer reviews

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Audio CD, April 23, 2002
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  • 25 All-Time Novelty Hits
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  • Dr. Demento 20th Anniversary Collection: The Greatest Novelty Records Of All Time
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Editorial Reviews

25 tracks that laughed their way to the top of the charts! And these three have never been on CD before- Got a Match Daddy-O's; Yogi Ivy Three, and Juanita Banana Peels. Plus there's The Flying Saucer (Parts 1 & 2) Buchanan & Goodman; The All-American Boy Bill Parsons; The Ballad of Davy Crockett Bill Hayes; Seven Little Girls Sitting in the Back Seat Paul Evans; Shaving Cream Benny Bell; Mr. Custer Larry Verne; Martian Hop Ran-Dells; Junk Food Junkie Larry Groce; Mr. Jaws Dickie Goodman, and more.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. The Flying Saucer (Parts 1 & 2) - Buchanan & Goodman
  2. Western Movies - The Olympics
  3. Baby Talk - Jan & Dean
  4. The All-American Boy - Bill Parsons
  5. The Ballad Of Davy Crockett - Bill Hayes
  6. Seven Little Girls Sitting In The Back Seat - Paul Evans & The Curls
  7. Nee Nee Na Na Na Na Nu Nu - Dicky Doo & The Don'ts
  8. Got A Match? - The Daddy-O's
  9. Shaving Cream - Benny Bell
  10. Hot Rod Lincoln - Johnny Bond
  11. Alley-Oop - Hollywood Argyles
  12. Does Your Chewing Gum Lose It's Flavor (On The Bedpost Over Night) - Lonnie Donegan
  13. Mr. Custer - Larry Verne
  14. Yogi - The Ivy Three
  15. The Mummy - Dor
  16. Surfin' Bird - The Trashmen
  17. The Jolly Green Giant - The Kingsmen
  18. Juanita Banana - The Peels
  19. Martian Hop - The Ran-Dells
  20. Gitarzan (Original Mono Single) - Ray Stevens
  21. Junk Food Junkie - Larry Groce
  22. Gimme Dat Ding - The Pipkins
  23. Telephone Man - Meri Wilson
  24. Mr. Jaws - Dickie Goodman
  25. They're Coming To Take Me Away Ha-Haaa! - Napoleon XIV


Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 23, 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Varese Sarabande
  • ASIN: B0000657XA
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #12,215 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
A whopping 25 hits on one disc usually will merit a 5 star review from me but there are some reasons that this disc is not quite up to par. First of all, it answers a question that I have been asking for years. Is there a master tape of Ray Stevens' 1969 single "Gitarzan" that doesn't have the laugh track overdubs on it? I guess the answer to that question is "no". This disc does include the original mono Monument undubbed single version of "Gitarzan" but, unfortunately, it sounds like it was mastered from an original single, and a well worn copy at that. But I'd rather have a sonically inferior undubbed version that a sonically superior version with that infernal laugh track so I won't say anymore about that. The sound quality throughout the disc is generally good although there are a few tracks here and there ("Mr. Custer", "Surfin' Bird", "Gimme Dat Ding") that sound better on Rhino collections that I own. I've heard better digital transfers of "The Mummy" as well. Then again, "Does Your Chewing Gum Lose It's Flavor" sounds better on here than it does on the Rhino Dr. Demento CD. As for "The Flying Saucer", I prefer the sound quality of Rhino's Billboard 1956 disc because they took the time to remaster the song excerpts that were used, and the extraneous surface noise is only audible on the dialog portion of the record. On this disc, the surface noise is prominent throughout the whole track. One other complaint I have is that the version of "Junk Food Junkie" heard here is not the original 1976 hit version (available on one of Dr. Demento's anniversary compilations) but a re-recording. The liner notes don't tell you this though. It makes you wonder if the compilers even realized they were using the wrong version. It's rare to find this kind of error on a Cary Mansfield produced project.Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD
There are reams of rock-era novelty record CD compilations in the market. Varese's "25 All Time Novelty Hits" contribution to this genre, a sampling of less-than-serious tunes spanning the classic period of rock recording, does stand above the crowd with some distinction. While some of the biggest novelty tunes of the rock era are not represented here, that can be forgiven in that they are easily found on other compilations. That may explain the decision not to bill this piece as the 25 "Greatest" novelty hits.

In its favor is the inclusion of several novelty tunes that did less on the pop charts and a few big records that have up to now never appeared on legitimate domestic CD's. Rarities found here include the Daddy-O's' "Got A Match", the Peels' "Juanita Banana" and a top-10 novelty hit that has yet to see the digital light of day, "Yogi" by the Ivy Three. The majority of the other cuts are top-20 tunes that would be familiar to even casual early rock-era listeners.

Production quality is excellent with all tracks in mono except 12,15,17,21-23,25 which appear in stereo. Interesting liner notes on the included tracks appear in the eight-page liner notes booklet. A well-constructed package, this CD stands out for its generous collection of familiar novelty tunes as well as its inclusion of some previously unavailable-on-CD tunes of the genre.
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Format: Audio CD
According to the label's website, here's the tracklist, with highest chart positions for each song:
1 The Flying Saucer (Parts 1& 2) * Buchanan & Goodman Pop #3
2 Western Movies * The Olympics Pop #8
3 Baby Talk * Jan & Dean Pop #10
4 The All-American Boy * Bill Parsons Pop #2
5 The Ballad Of Davy Crockett * Bill Hayes Pop # 1
6 Seven Little Girls Sitting In The Back Seat * Paul Evans & the Curls Pop #9
7 Nee Nee Na Na Na Na Nu Nu * Dicky Doo & The Don'ts
8 Got A Match * The Daddy-O's
9 Shaving Cream * Benny Bell Pop #30
10 Hot Rod Lincoln * Johnny Bond Pop #26
11 Alley-Oop * Hollywood Argyles Pop #1
12 Does Your Chewing Gum Lose Its Flavor (On The Bedpost Over Night) * Lonnie Donegan Pop #5
13 Mr. Custer * Larry Verne Pop #1
14 Yogi * The Ivy Three Pop #8
15 The Mummy * Bob McFadden & Dor
16 Surfin' Bird * The Trashmen Pop #4
17 The Jolly Green Giant * The Kingsmen Pop #4
18 Juanita Banana * The Peels
19 Martian Hop * The Ran-Dells Pop #16
20 Gitarzan * Ray Stevens Pop #8
21 Junk Food Junkie * Larry Groce Pop #9
22 Gimme Dat Ding * The Pipkins Pop #9
23 Telephone Man * Meri Wilson Pop #18
24 Mr. Jaws * Dickie Goodman Pop #4
25 They're Coming To Take Me Away Ha Haaa * Napoleon XIV Pop #3
"All-Time" apparently refers to the period 1956-1981, based on the songs on the CD.
Obviously there has to be concentration on the late fifties/early 60's which were the heyday of novelty or humor records. The 70's are represented by Mr Jaws, Gitarzan, Gimme Dat Ding, and Junk Food Junkie, and only the vaguely suggestive Telephone Man is under a quarter century old.
Read more ›
1 Comment 28 of 34 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
I think one of the other reviewers missed the point on this excellent package from Varèse Sarabande. It doesn't claim to be THE 25 all-time novelty hits - just 25 of a number that have an enduring appeal for those of us who appreciated songs now and ten with a touch of whimsy or humor. It even reaches back to 1946 for Shaving Cream by Benny Bell (real name Ben Samberg), a sensation at that time for its suggestive lyrics, and revived in 1975 thanks to Dr. Demento.

That reviewer is, however, bang on in observing that it offers some really hard-to-find ORIGINAL hits like The Daddy-O's catchy 1958 instrumental Got A Match? to The Jolly Green Giant, a 1965 hit for The Kingsmen that is more often-than-not presented on compilations as a re-make. The same applies to Lonnie Donegan's classic Does Your Chewing Gum Lose Its Flavour (On The Bedpost Over Night). Thank you Varèse-Sarabande for not only giving us originals, but for the excellent quality of each and every track.

Six pages of liner notes by NYC DJ Andy Anderson provide a wealth of information on each side (the reverse shows artist, label details and chart performances) interspersed with LP/picture sleeve reproductions. In the notes he mentions the law-suit that faced Buchanan & Goodman when they first brought out The Flying Saucer in 1956 using cuts from the hit records of the day. The judge's ultimate decision was in itself a classic, as you will see when you read it. And, fittingly, the entire package is dedicated to the memory of Dickie Goodman, who committed suicide back on November 6, 1989.

While there are countless other great novelty hits covering that span I cannot find fault with this offering, either for its content or presentation. How about a Volume 2? And then a Volume 3? Great stuff.
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25 All-Time Novelty Hits
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