Friends, welcome back to a new offering for Retro Records and today we are sharing a wonderful little Decca album entitled We’re The Banana Splits from 1968. A fitting enough name as it features the wonderful cast of characters who acted as the live-action hosts of the Hanna-Barbera variety show. I will admit that in my youth I have very few memories of my time before returning to my Father – although sitting in front of the TV watching reruns of The Banana Splits, Underdog, as well as The Three Stooges are burned into my psyche. And while I may not have been lucky enough to own We’re The Banana Splits back in the day, I at the very least owned this rocking coloring book!
Most of you that visit the site are probably well aware of the awesomeness that was The Banana Splits. With it’s blend of live action skits as well as the various animated cartoon segments featuring the likes of Arabian Knights and The Three Musketeers, it just really clicked with me and has stayed in my thoughts through the years. I should also mention that the show featured another live-action segment – the Danger Island series that starred a young Jan-Michael Vincent, Ronne Troup, and happened to be directed by none other than Richard Donner.
[Via] Cartoons Intro
The crazy thing is I totally have no recollection of seeing Danger Island when I was parked in front of that small black and white television set. Maybe when it came on I just focused on properly coloring Drooper, Fleegel, Bingo, and Snorky?
By the way, did you know that The Banana Splits were originally going to be called The Banana Bunch? Apparently, in Joe Barbera’s autobiography he mentions this piece of trivia – it turns out that a children’s book already had claim to that name and the Author denied permission for the TV show to share the name. In addition the Kellogg’s company had gone ahead and printed up a ton of cereal boxes with that very name and they obviously had to all be destroyed. We need to thank MeTV for that little bit of info by the way. And while it shouldn’t come as a shock that the Tra La La Song made it onto the We’re The Banana Splits album – in all honesty – it doesn’t rock out quite like Liz Phair and Material Issue did in 1995.
[Via] Derek Bartholomaus
Now before we dive into the goodness of this 1968 album, you should know there is a crazy amount of talent that worked on it. For example, depending on your sources the Tra La La song was either written by Ritchie Adams and Mark Barkan, the same guys responsible for the music on The Archies album. Or it was in fact N.B. Winkless Jr. that came up with the jaunty tune, Winkless among other things is responsible for the Snap, Crackle, Pop song for Kellog’s Rice Krispies!
But you also had Barry White, Al Kooper, Irwin Levine, Roy Alfred, Buddy Scott, and Tony Powers!
Now then, are you ready to listen to 1968’s We’re the Banana Splits?