Thursday, August 09, 2007

SWAT MILLIGAN! BASEBALL HERO


Barry Bonds, of the S.F. (steroid-filled) Giants? He's no hero. Not like... SWAT MILLIGAN!

Swat came to semi-fame 70 years ago via "New York World" reporter Bozeman Bulger's short stories. Swat's next and last shot, was this novelty track by Ernie Sheldon. As childish as this song is, it fit in with the days when Valmy Thomas, Pumpsie Green and Enos Slaughter played ball, "Americana" was in, and goofy tunes like "Come Onna My House" and "Banana Boat" were Top 10 hits.

Just as Disney served up "Casey at the Bat" via cartoon, energetic Ernie Sheldon tried to make a novelty craze out of this fictional baseball player for the Poison Oak team, long after Bozeman Bulger was going, going, gone. Bulger was a contemporary of Damon Runyon, and ghosted "as told to" sports books, including "My 30 Years in Baseball" by John McGraw back in 1923.
Here's Ernie and his jolly gang singing "Milligan! Swat Milligan! Clobber that ball!"
Sapristi! He apparently struck out with this.
The humor here is, alas, nowhere near the level of Spike Milligan, and Ernie couldn't get Thurl Ravenscroft to goo up that basso "Clobber that ball" line, but if you thought Wyatt Earp was "brave courageous and bold" you might get a lift from this musical whiffle ball.
If it's a choice between singing dopey 50's tunes or singing the praises of steroid-pumped clods like Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa or Bobby Bonds...I'll swing with Swat.
Listen and envision this as a Disney cartoon short, as you picture "Swat Milligan" and his antics. Now that Bonds artificially broke Hammerin' Hank's record, forget about it and listen to Ernie Sheldon -- and that bunch of background singers that were probably banned from singing along with Mitch.

SWAT MILLIGAN Download or listen on line. No wait, porn ads, pop-ups or foul balls.

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