Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Nothing can stop the Duke of Earl

Good morning, I might have a joke to share with you today.

I'm waiting right now to receive a password in my email so I can return to Gene Chandler's website and read his Joke of the Month. Apparently there is a chance the joke contains "adult'' material and this roundabout is a way to dissuade kids from having some cheap dirty fun.

If you remember the name Gene Chandler you certainly recall his biggest hit, "Duke of Earl", which began a three-week run at No. 1 on this date in 1962. Damn, I'm getting old. "Duke'' still receives steady airplay on Oldies shows, and was one of the three songs played by Sha Na Na in the drug-crazed morning at Woodstock -- although by then hardly anyone noticed. (A reminder, there is never a charge for trivia obtained at Six String Sanctuary.)

Gene Chandler was actually Eugene Dixon before the success of "Duke'' changed him forever. Before long he was wearing a top hat and cape and appearing on stage with a monacle and a cane. I mean, can you blame him? He had become the Duke!

I don't remember the get-up. But I admit I still get fired up upon hearing the first lines of that memorable song:

Duke, Duke, Duke, Duke of Earl
Duke, Duke, Duke of Earl
Duke, Duke, Duke of Earl
Duke, Duke, Duke of Earl ...

(Give or take a Duke.)

Anyway, it's good to see the Duke is still touring. He was in Rahway, N.J. for Valentine's Day, and next up is Norfolk, Va., this Saturday. Before long he'll be visiting my neck of the woods, and I'll have a big decison to make.

But I'm not doing anything until I receive that password.

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