Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Allan Sherman's Brilliant Lost Parody "Seventy-six Sol Cohens"

I know it isn't Lost Lyrics Friday, but I just saw something and could not resist writing on this now.

There's a cool new book called Jewish Jocks: An Unorthodox Hall of Fame that includes 50 essays by as many top writers on everyone from boxing cornerman Whitey Bimstein (a favorite of the great journalist A.J. Liebling) to sports prodigy and handball wunderkind Jimmy Jacobs.

What co-editor Franklin Foer wonders about here is why there aren't more great Jewish golfers.

Allan Sherman offered an answer.

Sherman's great, never recorded and almost completely unknown parody of The Music Man's "Seventy-Six Trombones," called "Seventy-Six Sol Cohens," considers the Jewish fascination with golf.



It ends with the Sol Cohens changing their name to Quinn.

Sherman suggests that golf was part of the crisis of assimilation, and that might answer Foer's question of why there aren't more great Jewish golfers. The already enormously demanding game of golf demanded something more of Jews that made the game too psychologically burdensome.

By the way, the only Jewish golfer in Jewish Jocks is Corey Pavin, who converted to Christianity.

Sing Sherman's parody to the "Seventy-Six Trombones" music in the video clip, which doesn't include the lyrics. Priceless!

Seventy-six Sol Cohens in the country club!
And a hundred and ten nice men named Levine
And there's more than a thousand Finks
Who parade around the links
It's a sight that really must be seen.

Seventy-six Sol Cohens lead the big parade
With a hundred and nine Irv Kleins right behind
But the lovliest men I've known
Are the men they call Sol Cohen
At that good old country club of mine.

Oh, there's Sol the drugstore man, and Sol the furrier
Sol from coats
Sol from shoes
Sol the builder, too
And one Sol Cohen is known as Sol the Worrier
He's so rich, what else has he got to do?

Oh, there's Sol who manufacturers ladies' lingerie
Sol from shirts
Sol from ties
Sol the commodore
The country club is full of Sols
And all the Sols are living dolls
But who's staying home to watch the store?

Seventy-six Sol Cohens in the country club
Seventy-six Sol Cohens playing gin
But they're hard to identify
'Cause as time goes passing by
One by one, they change their name to Quinn!

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