Earache My Eye

Album: Cheech & Chong's Wedding Album (1974)
Charted: 9

Songfacts®:

  • "Earache My Eye" is a novelty song and radio comedy skit rolled into one. In spite of not being a "serious" song at all, it not only charted but was Cheech (Marin) and (Tommy) Chong's only Top-10 hit. They did break the Top-40 with two other works, as well.
  • While the piece is "featuring Alice Bowie," this is merely a character created by Cheech Marin. While the comedy duo wrote the lyrics, self-taught guitarist Gaye Delorme set the piece to music and also supplied the guitar riff, while percussionist Airto Moreira supplied the drum-work. Cheech is indeed singing the vocals, although they lip-synch to the track during its appearances, such as in their first film Up In Smoke.
  • This is often cited as one of the most popular novelty songs of all time, becoming a mainstay of the Doctor Demento program. It also got heavy airplay on the influential Chicago radio station WLS 890 AM. WLS has an interesting history all its own; it was started by the Sears-Roebuck company back in the 1920s and then sold off, and it has a history of mixing comedy and music formats - such as adding farm animal sound effects to John Denver's "Thank God I'm a Country Boy."
  • This song owes a lot of its popularity to sounding awesome and yet also being such a dead-on parody of rock in the 1970s. "I only know three chords!" sums up a lot of rock music, especially in the '70s. The line "The world's coming to an end; I don't even care," echoes the sentiment of the '70s "Me Generation" which turned from the idealistic folk songs of the '60s, and immediately after it, "as long as I can have a limo and my orange hair!" refers to Ziggie-Stardust-era David Bowie, who really did have orange hair at the time. "Alice Bowie," of course, is an amalgam of the names Alice Cooper and David Bowie.
  • Covers and samples of this song include Korn (a hidden track at the end of Follow the Leader), Soundgarden, 2 Live Crew, and Electric Magma.

Comments: 2

  • Steve from Whittier, Ca"I said turn that thing down & get ready for school......earache my eye how'd you like a BUTT-ache!"
  • Ken from Yorkton, CanadaRush have used the song's signature riff live, to end "The Big Money", (whose album version ends with a fade) on the live album "A Show of Hands." It was also used to end Tom Sawyer on the band's Snakes & Arrows World Tour and can be heard on the subsequent live album.
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