Childhood Spider Songs (And Santa Too)

28 Oct

Yukon Cornelius

Like many, I have a long-time fascination with the music from the 1960s Spider-man cartoon.

While on the prowl for a source at which I might obtain the swinging soundtrack for my own personal use, I came across this post from WFMU’s Beware Of the Blog.

While it does answer some of my questions, it also brought some interesting details to my attention:

Toronto had a large pool of actors in the nineteen fifties that were nourished by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, one of only two major players in Canadian television, and the only major player in Canadian radio drama. This pool came in very handy when voice acting needed to be employed by American producers looking to cut costs. Rankin-Bass was the first American outfit to exploit the Canadian acting community, at a time when its soon-to-be-prolific animation outfit was still nothing in America. The now legendary 1964 stop motion animation special Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer employed an enmormous stable of Canadian voice actors that all went on to provide voices on Spider-man (What? You didn’t know Burl Ives played Doc Oc!?). Hemrie the Misfit Elf was done by Paul Soles, the future Spider-man and Peter Parker himself. Billie Richards, Rudolph, often played Paperboys or other anonymous children in the show. Paul Kligman who played both Donner the Reindeer and the Reindeer Coach in the classic holiday special became the cantankerous J. Jonah Jameson.

X-mas Spidey
Interesting, but unmentioned in the WFMU post, is that one of the co-writers of the famous Spider-man theme song was actually Paul Francis Webster, Best Song Academy Award winner for Best Original Song, and sixteen-time nominee.

That is to say, one of the fellows involved in writing the Spider-man theme also wrote:

(Try and cover that, the Ramones!)

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