1982 was a good year for several, obvious reasons. The Dukes of Hazzard saw a bit of a ruckus when Warner Bros. refused to pay actors Tom Wopat and John Schneider their due royalties. This resulted in the Duke brothers’ 17-episode hiatus / protest. Warner Bros. finally struck a deal which finally ended the Vance and Coy era (“cousins” filling the lead rolls left vacant by two smart actors speaking up when they weren’t being paid what was contractually theirs).
Let’s see, what else happened… Tron, E.T., Tootsie and Blade Runner were released… The stupid-ass St. Louis Cardinals beat the Milwaukee Brewers in game 7 of the World Series… Grace Kelly, John Belushi and Ingrid Bergman died… I moved from sunny Southern California to the frigid tundra of Wisconsin… OH! And the Beastie Boys released their first record, a hardcore EP titled Polly Wog Stew.
8 tracks released on both 7” and 12” formats, the Polly Wog Stew E.P. would be the first, last, and only official release from the band as a hardcore unit, next releasing Cookie Puss which saw the Boys Beastie bow more towards a new form of hip hop (well, at the time).
Yeah, ’82 was decent, and oh so long ago.
Sometimes you visit family and friends in the wooded, open-air state in which you grew up. Sometimes you cry from laughing so hard, you wear stocking hats in the early afternoon, you run the same route you did in High School Cross-Country, and sometimes you eat a whole, 1/3 box of Honey Maid graham crackers in one sitting.
Sometimes you throw away tiny mementos of your childhood to make room for tiny mementos of your adulthood, you discover a workman’s jacket your grandfather used to wear, you weave and dodge deer crossing rural roads at night, you attempt to snap pictures of the house cat chasing a chipmunk from the kitchen to the dining room and back, while your parents scurry from room to room attempting to get the poor zoo creature out of the house, you enjoy a severe thunderstorm, you visit your grandmother’s new apartment, you adjust to the idea of your grandmother living in an apartment, you drink countless, hearty cocktails, and eat at all your favorite restaurants that Los Angeles reluctantly ignores.
Sometimes you visit Half Price Books and find the soundtrack to Fellini’s 8 ½ for $2.99, you get your picture taken with your favorite MLB mascot, you delightfully peruse your parents’ record collection, you laugh ad nauseam with friends you haven’t seen in nearly 8 years, you play with cats, and you create new memories with which to bring up and enjoy in the future.
Sometimes you play Atari and drink Wisconsin’s finest beer with your girlfriend while laughing hysterically, you enjoy a bucket of balls at the driving range with your father, you play games at the kitchen table and your mother adorably invents a number of priceless one-liners, you build a bonfire, you visit the lake in which you learned to swim, and you wonder why you don’t visit more often.
Sometimes… it’s good to go home.
Today we take a look at the record; a 12” spherical disc, not only as a vehicle for music, but also as an interactive time capsule for important, historical milestones. Although it need not be stated that the contents of today’s post preceded 1974 by over three decades, the release of this record is significant because it offered, arguably, the most famous comedy routine ever to be recorded, to a legion of new listeners. I am, of course, referring to Bud Abbott & Lou Costello’s classic, Who’s on First?
The classic baseball routine is as renowned as Baseball itself. Abbott & Costello’s Who’s on First? is Baseball’s unofficial psalm. It was so perennial, that Time magazine deemed it the Best Comedy Sketch of the 20th Century. Who knew this sketch would be so loved by so many people? He did. Who did? Naturally…
Who’s on first? is as synonymous with Baseball as Mickey Mantle, Jackie Robinson, and Rickey Henderson. And since the baseball season is underway (seems as though nobody informed the Milwaukee Brewers), I felt it appropriate to focus on this release from 1974 above all others.
This timeless compilation also offers a Moby Dick sketch, a Hertz U-Drive sketch and a complete broadcast of The Abbott & Costello Show, “exactly as heard on November 9, 1944.” A must for comedy and Baseball fans alike, Abbott & Costello’s Who’s on First? will forever live on wherever Baseball is played. Enjoy!