Wednesday, March 10, 2010
"Bogey Music," from Paul McCartney's 1980 album McCartney II, is based on a children's book about slimy, smelly creatures who dwell underground and revel in all things disgusting. The liner notes clarify: "'Bogey Music' was inspired by Raymond Briggs' book Fungus the Bogeyman, published by Hamish Hamilton, London in 1977. Bogeymen live deep beneath the earth. Their lifestyle is almost opposite to that of the people on the surface, who they call 'dry cleaners.' Bogeymen hate music and prefer wet, slimy clothes to warm and clean ones. But the younger generation rebel and develop a taste for rock and roll and cleanliness. 'Bogey Music' is the first record made by 'dry cleaners' for the expanding Bogey market." Unfortunately that market, like the Bogeymen themselves, remained underground and never really emerged. The song, a sort of synthesized rockabilly dance pop number, was not to everyone's taste (Rolling Stone dismissed it as an inferior novelty song) but McCartney was fond enough of the concept to record a companion piece called '"Bogey Wobble." This second track didn't make it to the final album but circulated for years in bootleg form. Sir Paul made his own foray into writing for children with a book called High in the Clouds, published in 2005.