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Little Ole Man by Bill Cosby

Album: Silver Throat: Bill Cosby SingsReleased: 1967Charted:
  • What on Earth is Bill Cosby doing here? In the Billboard Top 10? He was just as shocked as you are. Just look at the expression on the cover of his comedy album (which also includes this song) 200 M.P.H.: he has that look like he's sayin' "What have I gone and done now?"

    Actually, when you come down to it, Cosby is less singing and more telling a story joke that builds throughout the song, with backing from a band and chorus. The song is actually another version of Stevie Wonder's Uptight (Everything's Alright)." But he did sing on some of the other tracks on the album, most of which are blues-standards-type songs.
  • Cosby was the first really famous comedian to have a Billboard-charting single, although many novelty songs charted by performers who certainly had "comedian" on their resumés. Another famous funnyman to hit the charts is Steve Martin, who cracked the Top-20 with "King Tut."
  • Even in 1967, Cosby was already a household name in entertainment. He had been in the TV series I Spy since 1965, and had released numerous comedy albums. He also was a regular guest host of The Tonight Show and annual specials for NBC.

    Over the next few years, he would make a mark in the musical realm as well, not only with this song, but also with the chart hits "Hooray For The Salvation Army Band" (#71, 1967), "Funky North Philly" (#91, 1968), and the spoken-word track "Grover Henson Feels Forgotten" (#70, 1970). Cosby also co-wrote the theme to the TV show Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids, and wrote the song "Hikky-Burr" with Quincy Jones as the theme to his 1969 TV show.
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