No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach's In)

Album: No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach's In) (1966)
Charted: 3
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • This song first appeared in a TV commercial for Alka-Seltzer which showed stomachs of various shapes and sizes and pointed out that all of them can get relief from the antacid. The jingle was incredibly catchy, and a music producer named Joe Saraceno turned it into a full song by assembling some studio musicians that he dubbed "The T-Bones." The new, full-length instrumental song became a big hit and gave Bob Crewe the idea for "Music To Watch Girls By," which originated in a Diet Pepsi commercial.
  • This was written by Alexander "Sascha" Burland, a jazz musician who composed many commercial jingles and TV cues. His music proved that commercials didn't require insipid tunes to be successful, as most music designed to sell products was loud and repetitious. Burland was also part of a novelty act called The Nutty Squirrels, who had a #14 hit in 1959 with "Uh! Oh! Part 2."
  • This song was recorded at United Artists studios in Hollywood on December 9, 1965. The musicians were the top guns - the same crew that played on hits by The Monkees, Sonny and Cher, the Ronettes, the Tijuana Brass and many others. They included Tommy Tedesco on guitar, Hal Blaine on drums, Carol Kaye on electric bass and Lyle Ritz on upright bass.

    The T-Bones were assembled to be the face of the group. They were the brothers Judd Hamilton and Dan Hamilton, along with Joe Frank Carollo and Tommy Reynolds. Judd Hamilton told us: "I was Liberty Records designated T-Bones band leader. Neither myself nor any of the 'road' sidemen I hired played on the 'No Matter What shape' recording, including my brother Dan Hamilton, Joe Frank Carollo and/or Tommy Reynolds. We, the latter line up minus my brother Dan, were finally allowed to record what became the last T-Bones album Everyone's gone to the Moon.

    Dan Hamilton, Joe Frank Carollo and Tommy Reynolds later formed the group Hamilton, Joe Frank, and Reynolds, who had hits with "Don't Pull Your Love (Out)" and "Fallin' In Love."

Comments: 7

  • Bobby Young from Oakland, CaThis is the song that made me start playing guitar 54 years ago! I remember the Alka-Seltzer commercial well.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn this day in 1966 {February 17th} the T-Bones were guests on the Dick Clark produced ABC-TV weekday-afternoon program, 'Where The Action Is'...
    At the time their "No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach's In)" was at position #9 on Billboard's Top 100 chart, two weeks earlier it had peaked at #3* {for 1 week}, and it spent a total of thirteen weeks on the Top 100...
    And on the same 'Action' show they also performed "Pizza Parlor", the song was track five of side two on their album 'No Matter What Shape', and on March 20th, 1966 the album peaked at #75 {for 1 week} on Billboard's Top LPs Album chart...
    * And from the 'For What It's Worth' department, the week "No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach's In)" peaked at #3 on the Top 100, the two records that prevented it from reaching the top spot were "Barbara Ann" by the Beach Boys at #2, while the #1 record was "My Love" by Petula Clark...
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn February 26th 1966, the T-Bones performed ""No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach's In)" on ABC-TV program 'American Bandstand'...
    Twenty-six days earlier they performed the same song on NBC-TV's 'Hullabaloo!'...
    See the next two posts below.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn January 31st 1966, the T-Bones performed "No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach's In)" on NBC-TV program 'Hullabaloo!'...
    The day before on the 30th it peaked at #3 on the Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart (see post below).
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn January 30th 1966, "No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach's In)" by the T-Bones peaked at #3 (for 1 week) on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; it had entered the chart on December 5th, 1965 and spent 13 weeks on the Top 100 (and for 6 of those 13 weeks it was on the Top 10)...
    The group's only other Top 100 entry was "Sippin' 'N Chippin'" from the 'Sip 'N Chip' jingle, it stayed on the chart for 5 weeks, peaking at #62...
    Rock 'N Roll Hall of Fame drummer Hal Blaine played on the record; and amazingly, between 1961 and 1976 Mr. Blaine played drums on 38 records that peaked at #1 on the Top 100 (starting with Elvis' "Can't Help Falling in Love" in 1961 and ending with "Theme from Mahogany (Do You Know Where You're Going To)" by Diana Ross in 1976)...
    Mr. Blaine, born Harold Simon Belsky, will celebrate his 85th birthday in six days on February 5th (2014).
  • Ray from Palm Bay, Idgreat female harmonies throughout song
  • Rick from San Juan, United StatesThe Ventures did a great cover of this instrumental in their 1966 "Where The Action Is" album.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Mac Powell of Third Day

Mac Powell of Third DaySongwriter Interviews

The Third Day frontman talks about some of the classic songs he wrote with the band, and what changed for his solo country album.

Songs Discussed in Movies

Songs Discussed in MoviesSong Writing

Bridesmaids, Reservoir Dogs, Willy Wonka - just a few of the flicks where characters discuss specific songs, sometimes as a prelude to murder.

The 10 Bands Most Like Spinal Tap

The 10 Bands Most Like Spinal TapSong Writing

Based on criteria like girlfriend tension, stage mishaps and drummer turnover, these are the 10 bands most like Spinal Tap.

Five Rockers Who Rolled With The Devil

Five Rockers Who Rolled With The DevilSong Writing

Just how much did these monsters of rock dabble in the occult?

Strange Magnetics

Strange MagneticsSong Writing

How Bing Crosby, Les Paul, a US Army Signal Corps Officer, and the Nazis helped shape rock and Roll.

Jello Biafra

Jello BiafraSongwriter Interviews

The former Dead Kennedys frontman on the past, present and future of the band, what music makes us "pliant and stupid," and what he learned from Alice Cooper.