If you are of a certain vintage you might recall the Mitch Miller Show...it aired in the 60's. The theme song went like this:
The Mitch Miller singers would sing all these old tunes and a bouncing ball would appear on the tv screen over the lyrics. Why? Well...in case you wanted to sing along, of course.
Anyway...let me get back on point.
Every year the junior class of our school would sponsor a talent show...called...you guessed it...the Junior Class Talent Show. A couple of us from the football team decided that we would enter...and sing some Mitch Miller songs. Alright, alright...I can hear you saying "Oh My Gawd..he's got to be kidding." Well, I kid you not. We entered.
We decided to call ourselves Mondo's Boys in honor of our backfield coach...whose name was Mr. Kane. Yeah, yeah...I can smell the wood burning now...you're trying to figure out how in hell that has anything to do with the coach's name. Well...read on and ye shall be rewarded.
During the 60's there was a movie called Mondo Cane (Latin translation...Dog's World). It was one of the first "shocumentary" films of that era and it featured some of mankind's cruel rituals and bizarre behaviors. I know you're dying for me to tell you about them...but I'm not going to...except for the part about the women in Lapland who would bite the b---s off reindeers. Aren't you glad I mentioned that? I thought so.
So how does that relate to the coach and the group's name? I know that's what you're thinking. Please be patient. Okay...so if you were a Latin afficionado, you'd know that the correct pronunciation of Cane is Cah-nay. But... if you were a dumb football player...like me and the boys...how might you pronounce Cane? I'll give you a hint...fill in the blank...Candy ____... Which rhymes with...K-A-N-E. Oh...and did I mention that the coach was a bit rotund? (Think mondo->world->round) Now...do I need to connect the dots for you...or can you see how the name Mondo's Boys was born? Clever huh? I think a few six-packs of beer may have played a minor role in that exercise as well.
So...Mondo's Boys was born. And here's a picture of us. In the back row is Jimmy, JJ, me, and Earl. In the front row there's Carl, Simo, and Ronnie. And Billy aka "Gertie" is at the mike.
We were given time to perform five songs: I'm Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover, Ain't She Sweet, The Man On The Flying Trapeze, By The Light Of The Silvery Moon, and Down By The Old Mill Stream. I can still remember the words to those songs.
We opened with I'm Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover, performed in classical Mitch Miller full-chorus style:
Our second number was Ain't She Sweet...performed in conjunction with a soft-shoe routine. Oh yes, we could dance too:
The third number was The Man On The Flying Trapeze in which I had a solo part:
Chorus: He'd fly through the air with the greatest of ease...the daring young man on the flying trapeze…
My Solo: "Oh, once I was happy, but now I'm forlorn…like an old coat that is tattered and torn…left in this wide world to fret and to mourn…betrayed by a maid in her teens"
And our fourth number, which brought the house down, was By The Light Of The Silvery Moon. We decided to give it our own personal touch:
Main chorus: "By the light..."
Back chorus: "not the dark but the light"
Main chorus: "of the silvery moon..."
Back chorus: "not the sun but the moon"
Main chorus: "we love to spoon…"
Back chorus: "not knife but spoon"
Main chorus: "to my honey I croon love's tune…"
Anyway...by the time we finished we got a standing ovation...and won second place. Unlike us, the winners...a jazz & vocal trio...had some real talent.
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I would like to have heard that!!
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