Friday, March 09, 2012

FDF Volume 3 Issue 257: Various Artists - Saturday Morning Cartoon's Greatest Hits

Album – Saturday Morning Cartoons' Greatest Hits
Artist - Various
Key Players -Various
Produced By – Ralph Sall

Release Date – December 5, 1995

What caused me to blow off the dust? - Just thought this would be a lot of fun to dust off again

Overview – A collection of alternative rock acts performing some of their favorite theme songs to Saturday Morning Cartoons. Is there much else to tell?

FDF Comments (aka the songs) – I'll go track by track on this. The links you will see here are to prior Forgotten Disc Fridays that have been done on that artist.

Liz Phair withMaterial Issue – The Tra La La Song (One Banana, Two Banana) from “The Banana Splits Adventure Hour”. The group as a lot of fun, with Liz having the bulk of the vocals and Material Issue being more the band. They don't deviate from the them much other than more of a focus on the rock band aspect. The original track actually cracked the Hot 100 in 1969 landing at #96.

Sponge - “Go Speed Racer Go” (from Speed Racer). Vinnie from Sponge has sort of a monotone delivery of the track. The full band is held back some, but it has the driving beat. The theme song was actually added for US audiences to the cartoon. This is a pretty straight up representation of the theme.

Mary Lou Lord with Semisonic – Sugar Sugar (from the Archie Show) – much like the first track, Lord is the lead vocalist with Semisonic being the backing band. The song has the fun bounce of the original version with Lord having a soothing vocal delivery.

Matthew Sweet - “Scooby-Doo Where Are You?” - Sweet could pass for the original version. He has just that right vibrato in his voice. When the full band comes it and Stuart Johnson gives the drum kit a solid beating you actually think it is the real theme. Sweet has a guitar solo so they do have a little more fun than the other artists up to this point. One of the stand out tracks to this point.

Juliana Hatfield and Tanya Donelly - “Josie and the Pussycats” - The two Boston based ladies harmonies really well on the theme song. Both Hatfield and Donelly play guitar and fire off one another. Lisa Mednick has a short Hammond B-3 solo after the second run through/verse of the theme.

Collective Soul - “The Bugaloos” - I had to look up what the Bugaloos were. It was a Krofft live action puppet (Land of the Lost/HR Pufnstuf etc) it aired from 1970 to 72. The song and show are unfamiliar to me so its hard to say if its true to form. It sounds like Collective Soul mostly due to lead vocalist Ed Rolands voice (duh). The band is well known for “Shine” in which there is a wall of guitars, and you get them here as well.

Butthole Surfers - “Underdog” - Now we are talking. Gibby Haynes has the usual vocals through a megaphone at the start as King Coffey rumbles across the drum kit. The band sticks with the “ooh ah oohs” from the song and actually keep it pretty true to form, but its a unique take at the same time. Paul Leary has a distorted, but quick guitar solo to offer up and they come back around for another run of the verse.

Helmet - “Gigantor” - This is the second Japanese series brought to America for this collection. It came to America in 1966. I don't recall this show either, but I like the way Helmet handles this track. John Stanier has the usual high piccolo snare drum sound. The band has the speed you'd expect and Page Hamiltons vocals are easy to hear. Guitars are big, and up in your face, but its that “thwap” of the drums that makes this a Helmet track. Just think big guitars and the stop/start riffs that go along with Helmet and you'll feel right at home.

Ramones - “Spider-man” - Hey, its the Ramones and Spider-Man..can you really go wrong. Probably the song that had me buy the whole collection this was showcased on many a mix tape (man I miss those days). There is nothing I can say on this realistically. Read that first sentence all over again. Nuff said. Oh, its over so quick, they do it twice.

Reverend Horton Heat - “Johnny Quest/Stop That Pigeon” (from Dastardly and Muttley in Their Flying Machines). - Quest actually started off in prime time in 1964 before getting moved. Scott Churilla gets a work out as Quest starts and Rev gets right on the guitar to play along. Rev says (in the liner notes) this was the most fun he had in the studio as the track changes key six times and that it was damn hard to figure out. There are no lyrics for Quest and they seq very well. Jimbo Wallce gets his big bass thumps going as Quest wraps up and then Rev starts the vocals for “Stop...” You can almost hear the smiles in their voices.

Frente! - “Open Up Your Heart and Let the Sun Shine In” (from the Flintstones) – As you probably have figured out this is not the theme. Pebbles and Bamm Bamm found their voices as a vocal duo in the episode “No Biz Like Show Biz”. The duo forms a rock band years later but this is a shining moment for the “duo”. Frente! Singer Angie Hart does a nice job and the song retains much of the same “sunny” sentiment.

Violent Femmes - “Eep Opp Ork-AH-AH (Means I Love You) (from the Jetsons) – Another track that was not a theme. Pulled from a 1962 episode called “A Date With Jet Screamer” Judy Jetson wins a date with the rock star. You can't escape that nasal delivery of lead singer Gordon Gano but the harmonies are fun. Gano has a quick guitar solo before a nice distorted melodic bass run comes from Brian Ritchie. They do this again later in the track and then go double time for the later portion of the track.

Dig! - “Fat Albert Theme” - The trade mark big bass intro is there. Phil Friedmann does a solid job. As the song start you get a real good true to form cover. It just sounds as big as you think it should. The band has a longer jam before the bass grabs you again. Singer Scott Hackwith gives us the “Hey Hey Hey..” and they come back around

Face to Face - “Popeye The Sailor Man” - Drummer Rob Kurth works slowly to get things to take off. Matt Riddle plays the theme on his bass and Kurth rings off the cymbal. The guitars come in and about the 50 second mark it takes off. Trever Keith pushes the guys with his vocals. You find you recall all the lyrics..even the second verse...its odd. Also, just so you know..its not Olive Oil..her last name is Oyl.

Tripping Daisy - “Friends/Sigmund and the Seamonsters” - Another one from Sid and Marty Krofft the band seems to be having a lot of fun with this. I recall the show, not the theme very well. Wes Berggen is given some time on the guitar to solo, but the track keeps it pretty tight. About the 2:35 mark it runs over to the actual theme which is sped up and DeLaughter is has his vocals pretty heavily compressed.
Tim DeLaughter has since gone on to front the band with the most members outside a symphony in the Polyphonic Spree.

Toadies - “Goolie Get-Together” (from the Groovie Goolies) – Even the picture of this cartoon doesn't strike a chord. I don't recall this at all. In reading the band sang a rock song in every episode. The Toadies drive the track with heavy guitars and pounding drums. I honestly can't compare it to the original.

Sublime - “Hong Kong Phooey” - Let me just get this out there...I LOATHE Sublime. They drive me crazy for some reason. The band make this their own, and one of the most memorable tracks on this collection is...well..skippable. I just can't get in to Sublime.

The Murmurs – “H.R. Pufnstuf” - The Murmurs are a female duo of Heather Grody and Lesha Hailey who both sing and play acoustic guitars. The ladies sound good together and the acoustic guitars are a nice touch to this theme. The theme is 'dark' at first when our hero “Jimmy” gets lost at sea. The second part is a far more psychedelic 60's sounding pop song.

Wax - “Happy Happy Joy Joy (from Ren and Stimpy) – A good song selection for an album closer. Also, not the theme, but the most memorable Ren and Stimpy song (Next to Canadian Kilted Yaksmen). Singer Joe Sib speaks the first few lines and then the band takes off. This is a hardcore/punk really sped up version. It has a ska feeling as well, with some horns tossed in. It is very chaotic, but a good fun take on the tune.

FDF Overall Take
If you love 90's alternative music you are golden with this collection. It will bring you back to your youth, have you crack a smile, and re-hear that theme song all over again.

See the post, for links to past FDFs on those artists.

Curious? Check out some MUSIC!

Matthew Sweet - Scooby Doo Where are You?

Butthole Surfers - Underdog

Ramones - Spider-Man

Violent Femmes - Eep Op Ork Ah-Ah

Dig! - Fat Albert Theme

The album is out of print but not to hard to find, you can get it at


At 10:18 AM, Blogger David Woods said...

Dude, great post. I had this cd but somehow it never made it to the mp3 collection. Love the Fat Albert Theme by Dig.
Great Job

At 12:44 PM, Blogger March to the Sea said...

thanks for the comment David. I can try to get you an mp3 of the track if you are stuck. Used to post em here, but got some stuff taken down and I really don't need that nonsense you know? Thanks for reading, and taking a moment to comment..its appreciated more than you may realize.



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