Gather 'round, kiddies, for a little television Halloween trivia in honor of the day.
'Way back in 1980 during the hey-day of WTBS SuperStation FunTime, co-TBS-er Terry Turner (later of SNL, 3rd Rock From the Sun, That 70's Show, etc., but no relation to Ted) came to me and said he wanted to write a Halloween musical number for the kids' show. He, wife Bonnie, Jan Hooks, and other talented folk worked the more adult Bill Tush Show, but there was a lot of creative cross-over in those days. If we created something good but not suitable for kids, we'd peddle it to Tush, and they'd do the same if they had a kiddie idea.
OK, so anyway, Terry said he wants to do a Halloween bit. He rifled through TBS's music library and came up with this 40's swing cut and got to work. His premise was a comedy sketch with three witches that break into song a la the Andrews Sisters. Our witch-incarnations of Patty, Maxine, and Laverne were Susie Beck, Bonnie Turner, and Jan Hooks, who harmonized beautifully and boogied truckingly (or trucked boogiely).
Too bad you can't hear the music to this little ditty, but here are the words:
And we know just what we're doing.
The trick to quality brewing
Is knowing what's in the pot.
Of Halloween Trick or Treating,
Before you tear into eating,
Inspect the goodies you got.
Don't eat up while you're out.
Don't eat any on your route.
Take it home
And lay it all out
To have a look at it.
It always pays to be cautious.
It always beats being nauseous.
Inspect the goodies -
Inspect the goodies you got!
We had to do about 15 takes because Bonnie kept messing up the line: "It always beats being nauseous." She'd sing: "It beats the hell outta nauseous." Face it, that's a better line, but it was a kids' show so we couldn't use words like "hell" in 'dem 'dere days. Still, I always sing it Bonnie's way, because cautious does beat the hell outta nauseous.
Wish I had a dub of that little FunTime bit, but - alas - no, I do not. (And JC Burns, if you're holding out on me, cough it up!) But every Halloween, I break into the witch-trio number, and remember a fun-time long past.
Now, don't forget to be cautious so's you won't be nauseous!