Jeremiah Peabody's Polyunsaturated Quick-Dissolving Fast-Acting Pleasant-Tasting Green and Purple Pills

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"Jeremiah Peabody's Polyunsaturated Quick-Dissolving Fast-Acting Pleasant-Tasting Green and Purple Pills"
Single by Ray Stevens
from the album 1,837 Seconds of Humor
B-side"Teen Years"
ReleasedJuly 1961
Recorded1961
GenrePop, novelty
Length2:26
LabelMercury Records
Songwriter(s)Ray Stevens
Producer(s)Shelby Singleton
Ray Stevens singles chronology
"Happy Blue Year"
(1960)
"Jeremiah Peabody's Polyunsaturated Quick-Dissolving Fast-Acting Pleasant-Tasting Green and Purple Pills"
(1961)
"Scratch My Back (I Love It)"
(1961)

"Jeremiah Peabody's Polyunsaturated Quick-Dissolving Fast-Acting Pleasant-Tasting Green and Purple Pills" is a novelty song written and performed by Ray Stevens. It was released as a single in 1961 and became Stevens' first Hot 100 single, peaking at #35 in September.[1] Its lyrics tell of a fictional "wonder drug" that, when taken in a daily dose, can cure myriad ailments, much in the same way unscrupulous patent medicine salesmen marketed their wares in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

The song is also notable for having the longest title (104 characters) of any single on the Billboard Hot 100 chart at the time of its release. In 1981, the Dutch remixers Stars on 45 released the medley officially entitled "Medley: Intro Venus/Sugar Sugar/No Reply/I'll Be Back/Drive My Car/Do You Want to Know a Secret/We Can Work It Out/I Should Have Known Better/Nowhere Man/You're Going to Lose That Girl/Stars on 45" -- a whopping 194 characters. Usually known simply as "Stars on 45", the record was legally required to list all of its component songs as part of its official title for copyright reasons, and thus usurped Stevens' title. (Another song often mentioned in the longest-title sweepstakes is the Hoagy Carmichael tune, "I'm A Cranky Old Yank In A Clanky Old Tank On The Streets Of Okinawa With My Honolulu Mama Doin' Those Beat-O Beat-O Flats On The Seat Of My Hirohito Blues" (155 characters), recorded by Bing Crosby and Carmichael himself in 1945. However, the song was never a hit, and indeed was probably never issued as a single; moreover, it is usually referred to simply as "I'm A Cranky Old Yank" on a handful of compilations.)

Chart run[edit]

Billboard Hot 100[2] (6 weeks, entered August 21): Reached #35

Cashbox[3] (8 weeks, entered August 19): 99, 81, 69, 59, 52, 42, 38, 61

References[edit]

  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1992). Fred Weiler (ed.). The Billboard Book of USA Top 40 Hits (5 ed.). Guinness. p. 438.
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1997). Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles. Menomonee Falls, WI: Record Research Inc. p. 584. ISBN 0-89820-122-5.
  3. ^ Hoffmann, Frank (1983). The Cash Box Singles Charts, 1950-1981. Metuchen, NJ & London: The Scarecrow Press, Inc. p. 568.