January 11, 2012

Album of the Week: Henry The First

"kenneth mars"

Earle Doud first tasted comedy album success when he was part of the troupe that wrote backed Vaughn Meader in the Kennedy satire, The First Family in 1963. Doud went on to make a series of satirical political comedy albums about Lyndon Johnson, Spiro Agnew, and Ronald Reagan. In 1974 he wrote and produced this comedy album with character actor Kenneth Mars doing a series of comedy routines as Henry Kissinger, including one where he sings Bachman-Turner Overdrive’s “Taking Care of Business.”

Mars is perhaps best known today for his role as the crazed Nazi playwright, Franz Liebkind, in Mel Brooks’ film, The Producers. He also appeared as the persistent police inspector in Brooks’ film Young Frankenstein. Often playing roles with exaggerated accents, Mars worked steadily in television and film. Yet younger audiences might recognize his voice as Ariel’s father in Disney’s The Little Mermaid or Grandpa Longneck in The Land Before Time series.

Hirschfeld would later do a series of drawings of Earle Doud for a comedy album sending up celebrity exercise workouts.

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