2 October 2010
Second Hand Record Dip Part 62 - Count Prince Miller - Rupert The Bear
Who: Count Prince Miller
What: Rupert The Bear
Label: Penny Farthing
Where: Wood Street Market, Wood Street, Walthamstow, London
Proof is right here, if we really needed it, that no cover version has ever been considered too absurd or too outlandish for a reggae artist. For this is indeed the children's TV theme given a decidedly mellow feel, with high-pitched, screeching (and I presume studio-treated?) vocals delivering the chorus. Whilst sixties psychedelia played with the idea of fairytales and backgarden creatures being drug-influenced, I'd be tempted to say that this tackles the subject of everyone's favourite Nutwood dwelling bear from a rather more doped-up perspective.
The B-side "When We Were Children" even continues the theme gamely, referring to the songs mothers sing to their offspring and the simplicity of those comforting times, which lyrically is very close to the same under-explored topic as Pink Floyd's "Matilda Mother". It didn't seem as if anyone in 1972 was really ready for toytown reggae or twee reggae, though, but the thought of a gang of menacing looking skinheads grooving on down to the "Rupert The Bear" theme tune is an enticing one.
Count Prince Miller had a cult reggae hit the previous year with "Mule Train Parts One and Two", but is perhaps better remembered in mainstream society for his role as Vince in the eighties sitcom "Desmond's". Both these performances outshine "Rupert The Bear", but it's a peculiar career blip and anomaly I couldn't resist uploading here.
sixties seventies eighties novelty nineties psychedelia The Beatles glam rock one hit wonders northern soul easy listening KLF garage comedy library music reggae Bill Drummond disco Microdisney eurovision ken howard romo/ new romantic cover versions earl brutus mark wirtz animals that swim Morgan Studios Wales embassy promotional items of a dubious quality synthpop bob morgan creation dora hall the bee gees Bam Caruso Beach Boys C86 KPM blessed ethel elton john howard blaikley Inaura Joe Meek Medicine Head brian bennett john pantry noel edmonds peter cook BBC Birdie Peel Sessions Salad The Critters czech rock British Gas Walham Green East Wapping Steam Beating Carpet Cleaning Rodent and Boggit Exterminating Association pete the plate spinning dog