Buddy Wasisname &
the Other Fellers,
Greatest Misses!
(Third Wave, 1999)

There's a whole genre of Canadian humor that makes Newfoundland a butt of jokes. Newfoundlanders, through defense or some form of self-deprecation, seem to enjoy Newfie jokes and add their own to the collection. That is the basis of the music by Buddy Wasisname and the Other Fellers, a Newfoundland band that recorded nine albums between 1986 and the turn of the century. This album is a collection of their greatest hits -- or, as they remark in the liner notes, their greatest misses, since the big record deal and major endorsement always eluded them.

The real names of these guys are Ray Johnson, Kevin Blackmore and Wayne Chaulk. They take elements of daily life and add their own odd twists for songs like "Salt Beef Junkie," "Gotta Get Me Moose, B'y," "The Pits" and "Shinny on the Ice." "Is You 'Appy" promotes a cheerful disposition. And who can forget the epic "Chainsaw Earle"?

These guys put oomph in their music and you can tell they're enjoying themselves. Still, some of the humor falls flat. And it doesn't really hold up to repeated listenings. I think Buddy and the boys are writing songs about Newfoundlanders for Newfoundlanders. The rest of us might not get the jokes.

[ by Tom Knapp ]
Rambles: 22 October 2002

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