To Be Or Not To Be (The Hitler Rap)

Album: Ultimate Broadway (1983)
Charted: 12

Songfacts®:

  • Only one Jew could dress up as Hitler and rap in a voice reminiscent of Louis Armstrong. This is Mel Brooks at his bad taste worst relating the short but spectacular history of the Third Reich. The title is of course lifted from the Shakespeare play Hamlet; it is also the title of the 1983 film which Brooks produced and starred in with his wife, Anne Bancroft. It is actually a remake of a 1942 comedy, which did not of course include a rapping Führer, and neither did the Mel Brooks version; the song did though appear on the soundtrack, and was released as a single with a video reaching number 12 in the UK charts. It includes snatches of the melody of "Deutschland Ueber Alles", the German national anthem, and the same couplet Brooks contributed to his earlier "Springtime For Hitler".
  • The extended version runs to around seven and three quarter minutes. Brooks co-wrote the song with the British musician, music journalist and producer Pete Wingfield. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for above 2

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