lundi 8 novembre 2010

Tiny Tim (1932- 1996)

Symbolically, for my first post on this blog, I wanted to let you ear one of my favorite outsider singer: Tiny Tim, a tall man with long black (or sometime red) hairs, white make up on his face, motley suit and a ukulele. Every of these details made him a very special characters, not to mention his high falsetto voice and his very polite manners.

This strange man had a huge succes in 1968, when he reached #17 in the us chart with a cover of “Tip toe through the tulip” (a hit from 1929). At that time, he was one of the musical sensation of the moment, used to go on every talk show, therefore became unfortunately the required idiot US television always needs for a brief period. He also appeared on a xmas recording from the Beatles, doin’ a cover of “Nowhere man”. For his very big concert in the Royal Albert hall in London, la creme de la creme of the english music scene was in the audience to see the man. After this brief period of glory, he continued to produce a few records, without success, though. And at the end of this contract with the label Reprise, he was broke and had to come back to his parents' house. His carreer went wrong until he died in 1996 : he recorded and played when he could and for a confidential audience only.

With his parents

His first period was the finest, according to the three albums he made for Reprise, but most of his records are interesting. This “one hit wonder” was known only for one song: a big injustice for a man who was a living memory of pop music, a human juke box who knew more than 1000 song: like a modern trobador, he could play at any moment a song wherever he was with the ukulele that he used to carry on a shopping bag. He only recorded cover songs, but always in his own peculiar style: here come four tunes an introduction to his childish and beautiful universe.

- Tiny Tim – Tip toe thru the tulips with Me (USA/1968) 1:51
His biggest hit. An absolute classic extract from this first album, a major record for me.

- Tiny Tim – Strawberry tea (USA/1968) 3:20
Another marvelous extract from this first album.

- Tiny Tim with the band – I Can't Help But Wonder (Where I'm Bound) - (USA/1968) 2:42
From his second opus.

- Tiny Tim with the band – Be my baby (USA/1967) 5:45
A splendid and very moving version of the Ronettes’s big hit. Extract from the soundtrack of the documentary “You are what you eat”.


Dj Alfred Hitchcock magazine

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