THIS IS FROM AN LP I'VE BEEN LISTENING TO SEEMINGLY AS LONG AS I'VE BEEN ALIVE. I can remember listening to it so many times that I know the album by heart to this day. What we have here is not a song but a comedy routine. The 17th inductee into my Batty Halloween Hall of Fame is . . .
CHICKEN HEART by BILL COSBY
From the 1966 album WONDERFULNESS recorded live at the Lake Tahoe Harrah's, this is a comedy album which is one of those bedrock listening experience that pretty much formed my sense of humour. This is undoubtedly the first time in my life I encountered the concept of "old-time radio" which apparently existed before that television thing I was used to watching. The whole album is a masterpiece of childhood experiences but the "CHICKEN HEART" track is particularly evocative in its images of the days when it was all right for parents to leave their kid home without a babysitter and when mischievous, horror-loving monster kids would sneak down to listen to the horror programme on the radio (and later, the SHOCK THEATER monster movies on TV). Cosby actually is referencing here a real episode of Arch Oboler's LIGHTS OUT radio programme with basically no changes. There are actually several Cosby routines with a horror subject which I could've chosen but "CHICKEN HEART" is the one which is so iconic from my tiny tot days when I'd spin it on my portable record player endlessly. It is a loving tribute to childhood, the horror genre and old-time radio combined and fittingly takes its place in the Halloween Hall of Fame!