'Neighbours' theme song by Dame Edna Everage
Dame Edna sings a cover of the very recognisable theme song from Neighbours, the long-running Australian television soap opera (1985–current). The song was written by Tony Hatch with lyrics by Jackie Trent.
In this excerpt of Everage's spoof we hear cheeky low-tech sound effect additions, including a meowing cat, barking dog, clucking chickens and a rooster. It is a contrast to Barry Crocker's very straight rendition of the original tune which featured in the show's opening credits from 1985–89.
This recording was featured in a 2SER broadcast about Neighbours on show 35 of Media Magazine in 1989. Her cover was released through CBS Records and Epic in 1988 (654503 7). No indication is given in the broadcast about why the particular recording was included, but the segment is an interview with one of the writers from Neighbours in 1989.
Neighbours and Edna Everage are possibly the two most famed Australian exports to the UK, and the 1980s was the height of her popularity there, so this would have been an obvious song for her to cover. In an interesting Barry Humphries connection, singer Barry Crocker starred in the comedy film The Adventures of Barry McKenzie, based on a character created by Humphries who also gives voice and form to Edna Everage herself.
Music, as well as stage and screen pursuits, has always been an important part of the Edna Everage Experience and this is a fine example of her humour and celebration / take-off of the banal Australian suburbia that Neighbours represents. See also her recording of True British Spunk (1972).
Image from The Mike Walsh Show. NFSA title: 495724.
Notes by Beth Taylor