Monkey Business

It’s good to be the king of the jungle…

It’s time to stop kissing Valentino and face the reality that another manic Monday is upon us.  Luckily for you, The Nest once again has the tunes that will help you forget that your bed isn’t already made.  This is the day we always turn into a fun day by trying to figure out what we’re going to play from that closet full of lost hits we like to call the Dusty Vinyl Archive!  DJ Scratchy’s pulling down the shades to give everyone her best sultry Susanna Hoffs look, while the Sponkies learn to dread their future of slaving in a 9 to 5.  Come on honey, let’s go make some noise…

Last week, I featured the single lost hit of Scritti Politti’s US pop chart tenure, and I mentioned I had actually planned on running a different song that week, only to veer to that oddly named band due to something I ran across in my research of the other song.  Well, that common link was the grand country of Italy… as Scritti Politti’s name came from an Italian phrase.  Well, the featured artist of my intended song was actually FROM Italy… and I’m sure my fellow Americans will now scratch their heads in bemusement over the fact that there was ever a big pop act in this country from the boot shaped republic that gave us the Mafia and Mussolini…

These guys don’t count.

That Italian act happened to have a name that’s very close to the name of a big American city, which helped throw us off the scent of their origin.  Baltimora was formed in 1985 by record producer Maurizio Bassi and a former EMT from Northern Ireland who expated to Italy named Jimmy McShane.  If you watched a lot of MTV in the mid 80’s, you’ve probably seen Jimmy McShane before… in one of the most legendarily cheesy music videos of the entire decade.  And the song was a real piece of work as well.  Here is Baltimora’s biggest and only US hit (#13) from 1986, which for some odd reason isn’t played much anymore, “Tarzan Boy”

Have you ever wondered what the result would be if you gave David Bowie a few bucks and had him make a music video in one of those amusement park booths where you could pretend you’re an MTV star for three minutes?  It would probably look something like “Tarzan Boy”… which is a train wreck that could only look cool when judging it by 1980’s standards.  The song is certainly catchy, even if the video accompanying it is new wave nightmare fuel…

Tarzan Boy has come to eat your soul.

Come back next Monday for another song that swung itself right into a tree…


About evilsquirrel13

Bored former 30-something who has nothing better to do with his life than draw cartoon squirrels.
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27 Responses to Monkey Business

  1. omg…. that was awful… and the kids on the dance floor: awhuwahoooowahhoooo! … but ok that was the evidence we are the offsprings of monkeys …

  2. I remember this one and still hear it once in a while. I liked the song at the time but I’m kind of wondering what I would have thought of it if I’d seen the video – it’s absolutely horrid but things were a lot more “primitive” in the day I suppose.


    • A lot of people commented that they knew the song but had never seen the video. I’m kind of the opposite in that for the longest time, I only heard this song when the video came on TV. Between the makeup, terrible “dancing” and the primitive video effects… this whole production was definitely a train wreck… or in Tarzan’s case, a collision with a tree.

      • What’s truly strange is having heard the song but never seen the singer – you get a “head photo” of people when you only hear them and – well – my head photo of this guy wasn’t even close. LOL

      • Well… there is a bit of a mystery over which member of the group actually sang this song. It’s definitely McShane in the video, however, as is standard, he lip synched it. Another guy in Baltimora actually sang a lot of their songs, and supposedly some think he’s the actual voice of this song and not the guy in the video. But everyone who ever saw the video will always associate it with him anyway…

      • Thom says:

        In that case, it should’ve been titled “George of the Jungle Boy”

  3. Oh god, one more thing from 1985 I really didn’t want to remember, lol. But thanks to the DJ Scratchy and the Nest this is one earworm I won’t be able to get rid of this morning! Thanks Evil!

  4. Umm…me thinks Tarzan Boy need to eat a few more bananas to fill out those hollow checks and then find a new videographer. 🍌🍌🍌🍌🍌

  5. Thom says:

    Two 80’s songs in a row that I (in true Geo. Washington fashion, I cannot tell a lie) really like. Both are in my iPod’s 80’s playlist. I have never seen that video for Baltimora before, however..and I wish the “pleasure” had been postponed indefinitely. I suspect that, had he known of the impending rise of You Tube where this video would be available for ridicule unto eternity, he might’ve brainstormed the video a bit more carefully. Then again, you could say the same thing about 3/4 of 80’s videos..

  6. ghostmmnc says:

    What a weird song that I never heard before. Couldn’t take much of that video either! 🙂

  7. Merbear74 says:

    If you need me, I’ll be in the jungle eating banana’s…

  8. I’d listened to this song (when it came on the radio) for years (or changed the station when it came on) but I didn’t even know it was about Tarzan until about six months ago. I just thought the guy was being weird and funny. I have to admit this made me smile. Good summer song for bringing out the sillies.

    • I don’t know if I’d have deciphered the lyrics correctly (or at all) if I’d only heard it on the radio. I exclusively knew of this song’s existence from the video, and since it has “TARZAN BOY” plastered all over the screen, I always knew exactly what this song was supposed to be about…

  9. crimsonowl63 says:

    Not being the right age exactly for an MTV viewer, I haven’t seen many music videos. Plus, no cable where I lived till 1991. I did RENT Michael Jackson’s Thriller though. My 2-yr-old son at the time loved that song (me, too).
    Anyway. This song? This video? Terrible, absolutely horrible. It screams typical 80s song to me.
    There were some decent 80s songs, but I don’t know if they were played on the radio or had videos (probably), but some do exist lol.
    Not this though. Not this at all!

    • You’ve liked a handful of my 80’s songs, but this was definitely one I knew you’d dislike. This is a song, well, video in particular, that even makes hardcore 80’s new wave fans blush…

  10. draliman says:

    All those Bangles references and we get Baltimora. Never mind, I love that song! I have the 7″ single somewhere. I had no idea they were from Italy, though.

    • Neither did I. Given how few people have stood up for this song, they may have singlehandedly killed off Italian pop music, which is why there are few if any other famous radio artists from that country…

  11. Those two guys look remarkably like characters from an early video game — the Saturn, I think — which was the last one I had.

  12. kelibia says:

    I like it ❤

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