Allan Sherman, the comedic darling of Dr. Demento best known (by me, anyway) for his song Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah, has a few skeptic songs of his own. This one, a parody on the tune Chim Chim Cheree from Mary Poppins, is all about the bogus ad words and magical ingredients touted in TV commercials for consumer products. A few are outdated, but the message lives on. My favorite lines? “I’ve lived all my life in this weird wonderland / I keep buying things that I don’t understand / ‘Cause they promise me miracles, magic, and hope / But, somehow, it always turns out to be soap.” Give it a listen! (Apologies for the seizure-inducing YouTube video. You might just want to press play and then scroll down to the lyrics during this one.)
Chim Chim Cheree
Chim chiminey, chim chiminey, chim chim cheree,
Those are three words that don’t make sense to me
But I’m used to words that don’t make sense to me
From all those commercials I see on TV
When I see an ad that can’t be understood
I know that the product has got to be good
Those words may be crazy, but I think they’re great
Like sodium acetylsalicylate.
I wake up each morning a most happy man
I cover my Pic-O-Pay with Fluoristan
I add Hexachlorophene, ’cause it’s so pure
And then GL-70, just to make sure
Then I take a shower, but never alone
I’m in there with Dermasil and Silicone
I brush Vitrol-D on my Lanolin wave
And I sharpen my Boo-boop, and use it to shave!
(He sharpens his Boo-boop, and that’s how he shaves!)
There’s Tufsyn, and Retsyn, and Acrylan too
And Marfac and Melmac and what else is new?
There’s Orlon and Korlan, and there’s Accutron
And Teflon, and Ban-Lon, and so on and on
These wonderful words spin around in my brain
Each one is a mystery I cannot explain
Like what does that Blue Magic whitener do
Does it make blue things white, or make white things blue?
(His blue things are white, and his white things are blue!)
My Fastback has Wide-Track and Autronic Eye
Which winks when a cute little Volvo goes by
My tank full of Platformate starts with a roar
But when I try to stop, it goes two miles more
I measure my breathing with my Nasograph
It’s nice, but oh my, how it hurts when I laugh.
My chair is upholstered in real Naugahyde
When they killed that nauga, I sat down and cried
(He moved to Chicaga when that nauga died!)
I’m giving a party next Saturday night
And here are the friends that I’m going to invite:
The giant who lives in my washing machine
That other nice giant, who’s jolly and green
The tiger who causes my gas tank to flood
That handsome white knight who is stronger than crud
The man with the eyepatch, who sells me my shirts
And that nut who flies into the front seat for Hertz
(That daring young nut who goes flying for Hertz!)
I’ve lived all my life in this weird wonderland
I keep buying things that I don’t understand
‘Cause they promise me miracles, magic, and hope
But, somehow, it always turns out to be soap
And they might as well be Chim-Chiminey Cheree!
(Those words all could be Chim-Chiminey Cheree!)
This has been another installment of Monday Lab Tracks. Send us your musical recommendations through our contact link at the top of the page, and tell us what you think of the song in the comments below!