Dickie Goodman

Long Live the King

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Dickie Goodman may not be a household name, but his work is instantly recognizable to listeners of a certain age, and it could be argued that Goodman is actually the inventor of what is now called sampling. Starting in 1956 with "The Flying Saucer," Goodman's M.O. was the "break in album", where he would set up a topical news cast or interview but all the responses were tunes from popular songs of the day. But it wasn't just the tunes of the day, it was the news of the day: from flying saucers and satellites in the '50s to Batman, James Bond, the 1968 Chicago riots, and the moon landing in the '60s. The '70s saw him adding politics and elections to the mix. giving us Watergate, Jaws, and the energy crisis with Ronald Reagan, Superman, and E.T. getting attention in the '80s. Goodman always had his eye (and ears!) on popular culture. His work has been difficult to find in the digital age, presumably due to difficulties in clearing all the samples. Long Live the King isn't a complete collection, but it's among the most complete. It's a fun listen and undeniably clever even if it is basically variations on the same joke over and over. You may remember a few of Goodman's pieces, but chances are that a good number will be totally new. Hearing some of the old songs that are sampled is also fun since they haven't all necessarily stayed in the public consciousness. Goodman stayed remarkably current through four decades and this collection really amounts to more that just a collection of novelty songs, it's become a fascinating document of American popular culture.

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