Why I like wine with my Wiggles
Fancy a pint and a hot potato? Or maybe a coldie and some cold spaghetti? A margarita and some mashed banana?
Wake up Jeff and rev up The Big Red Car, because The Wiggles are back to play a few gigs in pubs around the country.
This time it won’t be toddlers in the audience, but adults in their 20s who loved The Wiggles as children, and also mums and dads, like me, whose early parenting years were dominated by the skivvied fab four.
I’m beyond excited. I can’t think of anything better than sitting around listening to The Wiggles while sinking a white wine or three. It’s pretty much how I spent the first five years of my kids’ lives, come to think of it.
The fact that The Wiggles are going to bring back the original line-up of Jeff Fatt (purple), Murray Cook (red), Greg Page (yellow) and Anthony Field (blue) clinches the deal for me. A girl Wiggle and new songs such as Do the Propellor don’t have quite the same magic as the old stuff.
Like many other parents with toddlers in the mid 1990s to late 2000s, The Wiggles were a huge part of my kids’ early years.
But back then Wiggles DVDs were on high rotation on every TV in the house and we’d listen to endless Wiggles CDs in the car. Cute blokes, catchy tunes and wholesome fun sucked in as many parents as kids.
Mums and dads often found themselves tapping along to Toot Toot Chugga Chugga well after the kids got out of the car.
Any parent who’s ever walked a considerable distance out of their way at a shopping centre just to avoid a Big Red Car ride might remember what Wigglemania was like.
In fact my oldest son was such a huge Wiggles fan that for years he called the colour yellow “Greg”.
“I’ll have the Greg one,” he’d say, reaching for a yellow cup.
Smart boy. I always wanted the Greg one, too, and after one particularly intense Wiggles marathonwatching session, I even had an adult dream about the yellow fellow.
For five years The Wiggles dominated my son’s living moments. He’d sit there in front of his favourite Wiggles DVD dressed in his Wiggles singlet and underpants, banging a Wiggles drum, drawing with Wiggles crayons, while playing his Wiggles guitar and eating Wiggles biscuits.
It’s no wonder The Wiggles earnt $50 million a year at the top of their popularity and have sold 28 million albums worldwide. It feels like half of that came from my own pocket.
So I am not surprised the Twitterverse went into meltdown when the idea of the reunion pub gig was floated by Anthony Field last week.
One fan, Hicky, noted that he “actually considered going to a show a few years ago but I thought that might be a bit weird if I went without a kid”. Yes, these days he’d probably be arrested.
There is a well-worn path for well-past-their-prime rockers to reform to play outdated hits for their own ageing audiences. But it’s more unusual for kids’ entertainers to reform in order to play for kid fans who have grown up.
Perhaps the man best known for doing this is Adelaide-born singer Peter Combe. Remember him?
The man responsible for such children’s classics as Toffee Apple, Juicy Juicy Green Grass and Wash your Face in Orange Juice, discovered he had a second career 20 years later playing for the same audience as adults. He’s playing tonight in Fossils (Folkies of the Sixties Sing Iconic Legendary Songs), at Concordia College. That says it all, really.
It’s all about reliving favourite childhood memories. As the world becomes a scarier place day by day, it’s about taking us back to a time when we felt safe and happy.
The Wiggles are remembered by many with great affection; they got us and our kids singing, dancing and even eating fruit salad.
This time around The Wiggles will no doubt be a bit slower, a bit greyer and a lot older. But that’s OK. For once they’ll look just like their audience. Blog with Susie at susieobrien.com.au, follow her on Twitter @susieob and Facebook.com/ NewswithSuse