Sunday, September 18, 2016
SHG: Paul Anka: "Puppy Love"
Paul Anka: “Puppy Love”
Entered the chart on: 3/7/1960
Peaked on: 4/4/1960
Weeks at #2: 2
Song at #1: “Theme From A Summer Place” by Percy Faith
I have been dreading this one.
Actually, I do have a funny story about this one. But not about the original, about the cover by Donny Osmond (Demons in Hell, why would anyone want to cover this monstrosity? Oh, right, it’s the Osmonds. Mike Curb was in charge of them in the 70s, and the man had execrable taste!). I don’t know which of us did it, and I don’t remember how we came across it, but either friend-of-the-show David Perkins or I came across a Real Media/Quicktime snippet of bootleg audio of an audience recording from an Osmond brothers show from circa 1973. Donny’s rendition of “Puppy Love” went a little something like this:
“And they called it...”
[the rest of the song is drowned out by the fortissimo, rodent-like screeching of hundreds of adolescent girls]
I have to wonder if girls reacted to Paul Anka’s original in that manner. And how hormones could possibly suppress the “good taste” indicator so strongly.
[bangs head against desk repeatedly]
We’re back to this then? “They tell us we’re too young to know what real love is...blah blah blah.” At least Bobby Rydell’s song, lame as it was, tried. This is just saccharine, swathed in treacly strings and those hideous “angels in Heaven” choral vocals.
Let’s not even get started on Anka’s vocal performance here, which borders on the comical before spilling over straight into tragedy. He’s so histrionic in his delivery—sobbing, stuttering, whimpering pitifully in a ludicrously exaggerated fashion—I have a hard time believing this isn’t some kind of put-on. Who thought any of this was a good idea?
So quintessentially appalling, I think I might have broken my own rating scale.
Rating: 0 [obviously]