[78-L] 1st Family

David Lennick dlennick at sympatico.ca
Sat Mar 6 20:48:11 PST 2010

Steven C. Barr wrote:
> ----- Original Message ----- 
> From: "Bertrand CHAUMELLE" <chaumelle at orange.fr>
>> I know that comedy album; I've seen it several times at the flea 
>> market, here, in the old days. I found the cover unattractive, and I 
>> discovered Jonathan Winters, instead. As unattractive, perhaps, but 
>> very funny (in my opinion).
>> So you're interested by that album, not because it's supposed to make 
>> you laugh, but because it's about a president who had a violent death, 
>> isn't it ? If you happen to find a comedy album about Ike or Truman, 
>> you won't stop by ? The tragedy aspect is  'the main ingredient' ? Just 
>> curious.
> Originally (and for a sadly short time), this album was intended as a
> sardonic comment on how totally JFK and his image had taken over
> popular culture...! Neither Eisenhower nor Truman had such an easily-
> recognizable "audio image"...?! As well, JFK's notable "accent" made
> it quite easy to parody his speech patterns; OTOH, virtually all of the
> previous presidents had the hopelessly-bland sound of the "midwest"...?!
> The really odd thing is this...there was NEVER (AFAIK) a comedy 
> recording based on the speeches, usw.
> of "Senator Joe" McCarthy...?!
> Steven C. Barr

Not using the exact audio, unless you count the documentary "Point of Order" as 
a comedy album. But McCarthy was satirized at the time..by Bob & Ray on the 
radio, by Stan Freberg ("Point of Order") on record, and skewered by 
blacklisted playwright Reuben Ship when he returned to Canada and wrote "The 
Investigator" for CBC Radio. John Drainie spent a few afternoons in a bar in 
Buffalo watching the hearings and getting McCarthy's drawl down pat. 
Ironically, when the play was "bootlegged" on LP in the States (bootlegged my 
ass, the aircheck was smuggled out by the show's producer), it was an 
underground hit but Drainie couldn't get any work in the States because nobody 
would admit to having listened to it or finding it amusing.

Good night and good luck.


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