EVIL SQUIRREL: So did you have a great New Years Eve?
SCRATCHY: Eh, probably not. I can remember too much about it. Besides, I went to bed early.
SCRATCHY: Yeah, I know. But by 9:00, I was sacked out…
ES: That’s hard to believe for a party girl like you. Heck, even I was up until one in the morning!
SCRATCHY: So you went to bed eight hours before me! I don’t want to hear it then…
ES: Wait a minute! Eight hours before….. you meant 9 AM? Early!?!??
SCRATCHY: Yeah, the days when I could party right into the second week of the new year are obviously over. Much like this silly countdown, but I guess we might as well finish it now. Sponkies!
SPONKIE 2: Number 8 is…..
SPONKIE 1: That fat guy!!!!
SPONKIE 2: Bro! That wasn’t nice!
SPONKIE 1: I mean….. Hung Lo!
A wide path is cleared by the bored spectators to allow Hung Lo to make his way to the front…
FUZZYWIG: So, how many songs are there about eating dog?
CHIP: Dog Eat Dog?
FLEABAG: BARK! BARK! BARK! BARK! BARK! BARK! BARK! BARK! TIMOTHY! BARK! BARK! BARK! BARK! BARK! BARK! BARK!
SCRATCHY: Just so you know, my selection of Asian music in my collection is a little lacking.
HUNG LO: Hung Lo not like Asian music either. Prefer country and western…
ES: Are you being serious?
HUNG LO: Would you like to see tear in Hung Lo’s beer? Hung Lo is master of Boot Scootin’ Boogie!
SCRATCHY: (Removing Hung Lo’s selection from the envelope) I swear, if you actually picked some shitty country song…. oh for fuck’s sake, we all should have seen this coming a mile away!
HUNG LO: Time for everyone to go through airport turnstile sideways!
The 80’s is a decade in music best remembered for all of its great (and not so great) movie soundtrack hits. Before there was movies, of course, there was the theater…. and no, I don’t mean Shelf Critter Theatre. While musicals are chock full of moments where the story breaks out into a flash mob, for the most part, what gets sung in the theater stays in the theater. And if a show tune was going to become a mainstream hit, it was more likely to happen in the early days of pop music… certainly not in the middle of the 1980’s and definitely not from a play about chess.
Of course, that actually happened…. kinda. In 1984, lyricist Tim Rice and the male half of the group ABBA got together and recorded a double LP that was effectively an album musical called Chess, a story of love, Cold War politics and of course….. chess. That musical album managed to produce a worldwide hit the following year, “sung” by the “actor” who played the album’s American grandmaster, Murray Head. It should need no introduction…
The video for “One Night in Bangkok” stayed true to the album, featuring the orchestral introduction “Bangkok,” while the radio hit had a much more conventional intro that incorporated the music of the main song. Nevertheless, this has to be one of the 80’s quirkier hits and one that is oh so fun to listen to…. even if it is banned in Thailand for all of the rude references to the country it contained. If you wanted to know about all the fun and interesting references this song actually contains, check them out for yourself!
And of course, making the song even more fun and memorable is the fact that it’s almost impossible to mention the city of Bangkok with a straight face…
We’ll get more kicks below the waistline with another Shelf critter request next Monday…