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Stan Freberg - His Greatest Hits

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Album Review

This ten-track budget compilation includes musical parodies made popular throughout the 1950s by satirist Stan Freberg. Not only was he a Capitol Records recording artist, he hosted his own criminally short-lived show during the final vestiges of the golden age of radio and was the last person to have a comedy series on CBS Radio. Freberg was joined by some of the most notable voice-over talents of the time — Daws Butler, June Foray and Peter Leeds, not to mention the top-shelf accompaniment of Billy May — were all regulars. The program became an outlet for many of Freberg's million-selling Top 40 singles, such as his spoof of Jack Webb's deadpan delivery on "St. George and the Dragonet" as well as "Little Blue Riding Hood," where he likewise announces that "only the color has been changed to protect the innocent." The classic soap opera send-up "John & Marsha" rings eternally true, as does his pokes at Lawrence Welk on the send-up "Wun'erful, Wun'erful," the Elvis lampoon "Heartbreak Hotel" and the "Banana Boat Song (Day-O)" calypso put-on. Similarly, the decidedly demented take of Cole Porter's "I've Got You Under My Skin" proves that no icon is sacred. For the uninitiated, Greatest Hits (1993) is a fine point of departure. That said, Freberg's Capitol Collectors Series (1990) has over twice as much material, including everything found here. But the die-hard enthusiast will most certainly want Tip of the Freberg: The Stan Freberg Collection 1951-1998 (1999), as the multi-media box set boasts four CDs and a VHS tape.


Born: 07 August 1926 in Pasadena, CA

Genre: Comedy

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '10s

Hip and irreverent, Stan Freberg was the last network radio comic, a trailblazing satirist whose work greatly expanded the vocabulary of the comedy form. While most postwar comedians used radio and records merely as a springboard for more lucrative film and television gigs, Freberg pushed the envelope in both mediums, creating high-concept musical comedies and sound collages that revolutionized the audio format while setting the stage for the hallucinatory sonic visions of the Firesign Theatre and...
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Stan Freberg - His Greatest Hits, Stan Freberg
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