Monday, 5 October 2009

Naff Genes

When I was young I was an earnest devotee of the delicate cadences and meaningful lyrics of Paul Simon and several other furrowed brow folkies.

Being of limited means, I was therefore delighted one day to come across a "Marble Arch" or "Music For Pleasure" Cheapie Album in Woolworths (remember them?) which featured Simon and Garfunkel in their early years. Having parted with the 12/6d (62 pence eh readers!) I rushed home to play it on my green vinyl Dansette only to be bitterly dissapointed by a load of completely naff pap music such as "Hey Schoolgirl". I just couldn't believe that my soul searching bedsitter bard could have had anything to do with this rubbish.

The naff gene is only ever one chromosone or two from the surface. The Doors, for example, were the coollest band on the planet then did that oompah whisky bar thing. I always thought of myself as a super-cool dude guitar hero hampered merely by intense shyness and sat in my bedroom for hours practising my chords for Dylan and Hendrix but was rather shocked the other day to realise that I had committed to memory the entire lyrics of Benny Hill's 1960's ditty "What a World".

Just to prove it here are a couple of verses. I'm not proud of this.


Well the folksinger came from America
To sing at the Albert Hall,
He sang his songs of protest
And fairer shares for all.
He sang how the poor were much too poor
And the rich too rich by far,
Then he drove off back to his penthouse
In his brand new Rolls Royce car.

What a world, what a place,
Ain't you glad you're a member of the human race.


Now the button was pressed, the world destroyed
Leaving just one solitary man,
And at the top of the Empire State Building
His lonely existance began,
This loneley life came too much so he jumped
And he fell like a bird with one wing,
And as he passed the second floor,
He heard the telephone ring.


What a world, what a place,
Ain't you glad you're a member of the human race.


12 comments:

Dave said...

I feel you've found your true role in life. You are the new Bennie Hill.

zIggI said...

I prefered the one about the milkman, it at least had a horse in it.

Rog said...

Dave: Now you say that, I'm coming round to the idea in a strange sort of way...

Ziggi: I'm afraid I can quote the entire Ernie song as well. "Pasteurised is best" indeed!

KAZ said...

I'm sure that's the one Joan Baez sang at Woodstock.

Z said...

I have never heard of this song before. Please don't sing it to me.

Roger said...

Kaz: That wouldn't surprise me. Joan wasn't on my list of much adored folkies such as Joni Mitchell.

Z: You were probably far too young!

Richard said...

Didn't Paul Simon do "Chromosome" as well or did I mis-hear it?

I heard that Benny Hill one on the wireless the other day, actually.

Vicus Scurra said...

They all have feet of clay, Rog, even I am not perfect.

Roger said...

Richard: My friend Mr Google comes to the rescue. Benny Hill is like the common cold and will be impervious to medical science.

Vicus: So did Cassius, Vicus. I'm shocked to learn that you aren't perfect though - you've really shone light on magic now.

Sarah said...

When I saw the title,for a minute I thought you had been shopping @ M&S.

Roger said...

Sarah: If I had been I would have run through the underwear dept to the tune of "Yakkety Sax"

Scarlet-Blue said...

I thought it was going to be about people called 'Gene', I was all set to defend Gene Kelly and start singing in the rain.
Sx