1970s 7" Pop

Pigeon pie

A tin whistle. A parade-ground drum. A slightly out-of-tune pub piano playing sort-of boogie-woogie. Someone who sounds like a dero growling out “mo-oo-ouldy old dough!”.

What part of this combination suggests “four weeks at the top of the British pop charts”?

lt pig mouldyJust in case you were unaware that truth is stranger than fiction, I offer you Lieutenant Pigeon, an impromptu band which put together a silly, novelty, mostly-instrumental number, “Mouldy Old Dough”. It was released as a single in 1972. After being ignored at first, it became popular in Belgium, and was re-released in the UK, and went to the top the charts. In fact, it became the second-best selling single of that year, beaten only by Harry Nilsson’s “Without You”.

Even with the Planet Vinyl philosophy – open minds, open ears – it is a little hard to understand what people saw in Lt. Pigeon. But maybe that is the charm: it is a silly, lightweight, muck-around piece of nonsense. Maybe, in an overly earnest world, there is something to be said for that.

The ancient wisdom of the Hebrew Scriptures declares:

 I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.

Ecclesiastes 9:11, (King James Version)

A point surely proved by “Mouldy Old Dough”.

  • Artist: Lieutenant Pigeon
  • Single Title: Mouldy Old Dough
  • Track: Side A “Mouldy Old Dough”
  • Format: 7”, 45 rpm
  • Label: Decca, Y-9960
  • Manufactured in: Australia
  • Year: 1972

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