Wednesday, August 5, 2009
TUNE OF THE MOMENT: "WITCH-A-MA-JIG SONG" by SMILIN' ED MCCONNELL AND HIS BUSTER BROWN GANG
Back in the 1940s Capitol records released an entertaining series of 10-inch 78 rpm records for kids. Some were singles with one song or skit on each side while others were released in booked sets of 3 records. When I was a kid I inherited a few of these from my parents including a nifty 3 record set featuring Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig (in Africa!) and their pals. They were all expertly voiced by Mel Blanc with an amazing orchestrated score and sound effects. They really put a lot of work into these "kids" records and I was lucky my parents gave this to me along with a few others. One Capitol kids' 78 I did not receive was "The Witch-A-Ma-Jig Song" recorded by Smilin' Ed McConnell and his Buster Brown Gang. If they had given me this record I probably would've had nightmares for weeks. Smilin' Ed was a radio personality who, amongst other things, had a kids program that reportedly ran from 1944 to 1953 that was sponsored by Buster Brown Shoes. One of his characters was Froggy the Gremlin whom you may have heard of. There's something truly demonic sounding about Froggy's grumbly throat-cancer-esque voice that gives me the willies! In any case, Ed, Froggy and the whole gang eventually ended up with a television series that was later run by Andy Devine. Somewhere along the way the catch phrase "Pluck my magic twanger" was born. As for the record, it speaks for itself.
You can also play the record on your Media Player by clicking here.