My husband and I watched Upstairs, Downstairs this past week. The original version took the story of Britain up to World War I – or as they called it, the war to end all wars. The second season of this return of Upstairs, Downstairs takes them to World War II. As the characters talked about Germany and Hitler and his cohorts, I could not help remembering my dad playing this particular song. In fact, it was my introduction to world history (and at a very tender age).
The artist, Spike Jones (and his crazy band, The City Slickers) were famous for their musical foolery, and Der Fuehrer’s Face may well be Jones’ most famous ripio! Additionally, he also wrote parodies of popular music of the big band era like Cocktails for Two as well as classics such as The William Tell Overture. Jones was truly one of forerunners of the great “Punchies.”
I have posted two versions. The first one has simply a record jacket along with a well-executed, polished performance of this song. Just like my dad used to play it. The second one is a video clip of the band actually performing the music. It is, ummm, more entertaining. Let me put it this way: The live performance also includes some rude and irreverent gestures which may or may not offend you (quite punchy indeed). There…you are on your own. (Also, the second one took its time loading the video…but second time around it was fine.)
So…is it Punchy or not? I am waiting to hear….