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The Monkey Song, Belafonte version with Animaniacs video

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Uploaded on Oct 2, 2008

Yesterday, looking at the comments of a video of the Animaniacs version of the Monkey song, I was disheartened to see that in nearly a year since the video was posted, not a single person had pointed out that the song existed for more than 30 years before the cartoon was made.

It seems most Animaniacs fans think this song came from Animaniacs. So, I set out to demonstrate the truth.

In so doing, I discovered a few things besides the lyrics that are similar, e.g., where Harry Belafonte says "On de corner" right as Dr Scratchansniff rounds a corner, and, moments later, "up!" as Scratchansniff climbs a fire escape. Very clever stuff from the artists at Warner Bros.

The tempo of the two versions is slightly different, but the animation still seems to stay very close to the related action from the original song, though I did have to cut out two extended sequences -- at the beginning and in the middle (you'll see crossfades at the two cut points).

This recording dates from 1961. The album is called "Jump Up Calypso". It was re-released on CD in 1997.

This is neither a high-quality video capture nor a high-quality audio recording. Buy the DVDs for the video and the LP or CD for the music if you want them in better quality.

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