Way Out Wednesday: “Smurfing Sing Song”

Written by Music, Way Out Wednesday

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When you start playing children’s records, sooner or later you’ve got to get to the Smurfs. You can’t even accuse the record label of cashing in on the Saturday morning show on this one, because this came out in 1980, a year before the show premiered in the U.S. (although I do remember it being advertised incessantly on TV). And no matter how you feel about the Smurfs, these are pretty catchy songs.

Remember in that Fastball song called “The Way” how the verse was sung in a minor key to give it an air of mystery, and then the chorus was in a major key to give it a more hopeful feel? Well, the Smurfs did it years before they did. In fact, they do it twice on this album (and quite effectively too). This first song, “Smurfing Land,” gives the Smurfs a bit of an origin story. Basically, a wise magician was lonely so he made some little blue friends. Hey, we’re not talking about “With great power comes great responsibility” or “Truth, justice and the American way” here.

Smurfs – Smurfing Land

The second song to go with the minor key verse/major key chorus is “Little Smurf Boat,” and for some inexplicable reason I really like this song. (So much so that it’s actually on my mp3 player.) The description of the boat is wonderfully done, and the song has a very dreamy quality (figuratively and literally).

Smurfs – Little Smurf Boat

All right, after all that slow, lugubrious stuff it’s time for something silly, and it can’t get much sillier than the song “You’re a Pink Toothbrush,” a song where Dad’s blue toothbrush is flirting with Mom’s pink one, even using the ol’ “We’ve met somewhere before” pickup line.

Smurfs – You’re a Pink Toothbrush

I put this song in because for some reason there’s this guy singing with the Smurfs with no explanation as to who he is. Is he the wise magician who created the Smurfs? Is he their David Seville? Is he special guest star Christopher Cross? I have no idea, but enjoy this sweet song about growing up called “Merry Go Round.”

Smurfs – Merry Go Round

And finally, I had to add “Smurf Lullaby” because so many people commented on my blog about it. People who have lost this album years ago still remember all the words to this. Like the Smurfs or hate them, you’ve got to admire the fact that a song like this has made that deep an impression on so many people.

Smurfs – Smurf Lullaby

I’m sure you guys thought I was going to savage the Smurfs with Scrappy-Doo like glee. To be honest, I never cared for the Saturday morning show, but I really enjoyed this album. If you’d like to hear the entire album, you can get it here!

OK, before things get any more soppy, here’s something odd to end the festivities. This was a public service announcement from UNICEF featuring the Smurfs. It’s certainly not what you’d expect, although it’s probably what many of you had dreamed about. (By the way, the message at the end translates as “War. Don’t let it devastate the world of children.”

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