Saturday, June 28, 2014

Saturday Morning's Greatest Hits: Tarzan Boy (1985-6)

The mid-80's 1-hit wonder, Baltimora, wasn't just 1 person. Instead, it was an Italian studio band whose lead singer, Jimmy McShane, was from Ireland, and was working as an EMT with the Italian Red Cross when he met the rest of the band in 1984. McShane became the public face--and voice---of Baltimora, although there is some dispute as to whether or not he really sang lead on their biggest hit single, 1985's "Tarzan Boy". The subsequent CD, "Living in the Background", didn't land a release in the US until a year later, but,  by then, a follow-up single, "Woody Boogie", failed to chart here.

And so it is that Baltimora, or, more specifically, Jimmy McShane, made the rounds here, appearing on Solid Gold and, in this clip, American Bandstand.



My first exposure to "Tarzan Boy" came when a dance club next door to my apartment would play it on the weekends, and the sound would carry into my apartment, specifically in my bedroom. The chorus, built around an approximation of the famous "Tarzan yell" made by Johnny Weismuller, was the hook. Sadly, McShane passed away nearly 20 years ago at 37 due to complications from AIDS. A budding talent, taken too soon.

4 comments:

magicdog said...

I don't get to hear this one on the radio much anymore, (another download for my iPod!) but it's still a fun song IMO.

Listerine liked it! They used it for a commercial several years back - the Listerine bottle was swinging on a vine as the song played!

hobbyfan said...

Yes, I remember that ad. Silly, but fun.

Mark Watson said...

Baltimora appeared on American Bandstand in the mid-1980's. The singles Jungle Boy was released during the decade by E.M.I., the predecessor to what is now the Universal Music Group.

hobbyfan said...

Thanks, but I'd already established the year this was released.