The Shaggs: My Pal Foot Foot
Tuesday/October/27 2009 Filed in: Entertainment / Media
My Pal Foot Foot
Even in the smoky, drugged-out haze of the late 60's music scene, the Shaggs' My Pal Foot Foot just didn't have what it takes to be a hit song.
But here we are talking about it some forty years after it was recorded. That says something that certainly can't be said for the thousands of forgotten one-hit-wonders that have come and quickly gone in the meantime. The Shaggs -- Dot, Helen, Betty and Rachel Wiggin -- made their mark in pop music history.
Drawing by Dorothy Wiggin: Foot Foot was the name of the family cat
Winning us over?
The Shaggs are easy to ridicule yet we find ourselves gradually won over by their innocent charm. They weren't trying to sound bad but felt compelled by love for their overly-ambitious Dad to strum guitars and beat drums when they likely would have preferred to hang out with their friends.
And who among us can't identify with the lengths often gone to in order to earn Dad's approval?
Not enough can be said here about the brilliant video that D. Sticker put together for this song. It has fun with the song somehow without really making fun of these young singers.
And it's an interesting yet surprising compliment to the Shagg's that their original version is arguably superior to the Deerhoof cover of My Pal Foot Foot, recorded years later.
It appears that the Shaggs had matured a bit as musicians and songwriters by the time My Cutie rolled out. It's really not a bad tune about teen angst. We see this song as kind of their Rubber Soul period -- eschewing the hard rock edge for a softer lyrical focus. The closing guitar riff is classic Shaggs though.
There's an unsubstantiated rumor that Neil Diamond, who reportedly took an interest in the Shaggs' music, is playing rhythm guitar on this recording. We don't believe it but the guitar does sound a lot better here.
The Shaggs - Still Rockin' It
Want More of The Shaggs?: It's Halloween!