Travel the boondocks, go back in time, out past Rackemsack, on the Hamtramck Line. Hear a boogie piano played by a man from the hills. Pet a shaggy-haired poodle, it’ll give ya a thrill. At the burlesque show you’ll see pasties twirl, but you best watch your step ‘round a Highland Park Girl. She took it to the country, and she took it to the town, but when the preacher saw her, he laid his Bible down.
In that past, nearly forgotten now, in that golden age of raunchy hillbilly records that began in the pre-war days and culminated in the early 50’s, folks knew how to make a party record. Some were tawdry, some were trite. But the best songs portray the deed with salty humor and no guilt and, what’s more, they convey the sense that death and decency lurk just outside the whorehouse door. So you'd better have your fun while you can.
Collected here on the 1959 LP Skeets McDonald’s Tattooed Lady Plus Eleven Other Sizzlers, is a twelve-pack of tracks chock full of leering, lascivious, and barely concealed double-entendre. For the most part all of these sides were originally released on long lost 78 rpm singles on Devora and Jack Brown’s fabled Fortune label.
Brief, anonymous liner notes tell more of the story:
Skeets McDonald’s orignal hit recording of ‘The Tattooed Lady’ heads this spicy, risque collection of party novelties. This is the ‘Lady’ that burned up the juke boxes in the 50’s. What a song! Also included is Skeets McDonald’s ‘BirthdayCake Boogie,’ another sizzling scorcher in the honky tonk tradition.
Here is hilarious party fun galore as this album spins merrily on its way with ‘DirtyBoogie’ and ‘She Sure Can Rock Me’ by that outstanding honky tonk piano player and singer, Roy Hall, who is also a fine comedian and a versatile actor. Another high-light of this great album, are the two evergreens, ‘HamtramckMama,’ and ‘Highland Park Girl’ by the famous York Brothers. Additional spice added to this album is, ‘At the Burlesque Show’ by Rufus Shoffner, also the humorously spicy, ‘He’s a Mighty Good Man to Do That’ and ‘Song of the Club’featuring the talented and naughty vocal stylings of Boots Gilbert. The titles of the other three numbers, by Johnny Bucket and Tommy Odim, speak for themselves [See below - ed.]. Have a ball with this exciting TATTOOED LADY album!
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Let us end here, stopping as abruptly as do the tracks on this crude album. Now move your hand, don’t let it linger, or you’ll get sticky stuff all over your finger.
Let Me Play With Your Poodle - Johnny Buckett
Griddle Greasin' Daddy - Johnny Buckett
She Won't Turn Over For Me - Tommy Odim
|Birthday Cake Boogie|
|Can I Play With Your Poodle?|
Original cover illustrations by David R. Kirk