Thursday, September 05, 2013

How bizarre wax

I've wanted a copy of How Bizarre on vinyl for ages. As a DJ, it's one of those great Kiwi tunes that just makes people smile whenever you play it. Like when I drop Slice of Heaven. Dobbo and Herbs, gold.

I finally found a copy recently, floating round in the 2nd hand vinyl bins up at Conch Records. Local DJ Manuel Bundy had had a bit of a clear out and was parting with it (thanks Manny!). Of course Manuel observed the How Bizarre phenomenon firsthand, as he toured the world as part of OMC's live band in 1997.

He talked about that time in an interview with yours truly over at Audioculture - he said “The one thing about Pauly – there was that classic tall poppy syndrome, a lot of people dissed ‘How Bizarre’, a lot of the hip-hoppers – but no one analysed it, and thought 'why was it a hit?' It’s because the way he looked, people didn't know where to put him ... That’s why it was a hit. He was like this Polynesian Elvis from outer space!"

This promo oddity was slung together by some marketing guru at Polygram Canada in 1996. They had the stupendously weird notion that How Bizarre would sit comfortably alongside a Grease Megamix. It doesn't. The flip is two appallingly bad club mixes of How Bizarre.

Simon Grigg (boss of OMC's label Huh!) tells me that they were very unhappy when this promo turned up and Pauly Fuemana was furious.

ADDED: There's plans afoot to remaster/reissue the OMC album early next year, with bonus tracks, hopefully including the acapella of How Bizarre.

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