Tuesday, October 8, 2013

"DO THE FREDDY" - FROM BRITISH INVASION DANCE CRAZE TO 80s HALLOWEEN SONG

Last week, I posted a list of my favorite British Invasion hits of the 60s. My sister, Villanova, who was in elementary school when the British Invasion started, ask why I left off Freddie and the Dreamers. My first thought was to say "Because they suck," then I thought I would be fair to the group and bring up a forgotten Halloween song of the past.


Freddie and the Dreamers had about five charted hit singles in America. Their biggest was the number one hit "I'm Telling You Now" in 1964. Their last record issued in this country was 1966, which made them a short lived phenomenon in the United States. Part of their problem was the novelty of their act. Other bands simply played songs and either made it by being cute and nice (The Beatles, Herman's Hermits, Dave Clark Five) or bad boys (The Animals, the Stones). Freddie and the Dreamers not only looked like nerds, but they hopped from leg to leg when they sang. Lead singer Freddie Garrity wave his arms like a skinny, bespectacled bird trying to take off for the clouds. Freddy also had a wacky, goofy laugh like a drunken witch that he worked into songs.

The group's second big hit was a 1965 dance number, based on the group's unusual stage movements, called "Do the Freddie." Here is video of them performing the song on TV in 1965.




Flash forward to Halloween of 1987. Some mad genius somewhere decides to create an LP to cash in on Hollywood's hottest monster, Freddy Krueger of the Nightmare on Elm Street movie series. The LP, entitled Freddy's Greatest Hits, featured a studio group, referred to on the cover of the LP as the Elm Street Group, recorded covers of several oldies ("In the Midnight Hour", "All I Have to Do is Dream") and some original songs inspired by the Nightmare on Elm Street films. On each track, Robert Englund, the actor who played Freddy Krueger, would growl or make some of Freddy's trademark bad puns or threats.

The song that was released as a single from this LP was "Do The Freddy." The spelling of the name was changed, but it was the same song. I might be wrong about this, but I don't believe the LP was ever issued on CD, because, at the time, CD's were new and this was a Halloween novelty LP aimed at kids. Here is the Elm Street Group version of "Do the Freddy."



This has to be one of the oddest covers of a hit song ever, but I'm sure child of the 80s played this at a Halloween party. Nothing like going from Freddie and the Dreamers to Freddy's nightmares. 

 

1 comment:

Caffeinated Joe said...

All in good silly fun, right?

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