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The Pretzel Sisters (Mamie and Trixie)

Night of the Beagle

Night of the Beagle

Warning!!! This one is a little complex...

This song is like Meet Me in Iceland, in that we took a song from my brother, this time one titled "Night of the Beagle", and made it interesting.

Abstract:  If you don't want to deal with the whole explanation, here's the executive summary.

The song has been fully re-imagined as being discovered on a long-forgotten cassette in the back of a disused closet in a sad and lonely room; a number performed by the legendary Tim Tew Four, with special guests The Pretzel Sisters (Tim introducing the special treat, a young lady in the audience). The song itself is one of those Carlos Santana wannabes Tim could never remember the name to, that's been lyrically written in the vernacular of Thom Turner (of famed "Mexico" music). Because it is titled "Night of the Beagle", its narrative is themed around the concept of a relationship between Snoopy and Peppermint Patty. Their relationship is established by Patty's call to Charlie Brown, in which she invites Snoopy over to her house, as her father is out of town. Snoopy, upon hearing this news, cackles wildly, as he knows Patty's true intent must be to have amorous relations. In Snoopy's personality, this desire manifests in the form of a strong Latin lover, with visions of "Golden Mexico" (which comes to represent the concept of bestiality), and he adopts a secondary persona that sings in the voice of the guy who does the durge version of "Roxanne" in "Moulin Rouge" (the most macho, yet silly Latino I could do). He sings in Spanish:

Soy tu perro (I am your dog)
Eres mi puta (You're my bitch)
Night of the Beagle

And, your song, found here.

In DeLand, where we all grew up, the music store was run by a guy named Thom Turner. Thom had visions of being a recording star of his own, and wrote country tunes. He especially seemed to favor songs about Mexico. He paid Trixie and Tim, the drummer from The Tim Tew Four, to play with him in the studio for some tracks, resulting in two of the inspirational sources found here, "Mexico" and "The Bull".

Later on, alone with a drum machine and a four-track, Thom made his own solo recordings, which resulted in such gems as "Southern Loving Magazine."

This is the same era, more or less, when my brother was working at the music store with Tim and Trixie, followed by his leaving and my joining the band. So the Banter Medley from the The Tim Tew Four is very much part of establishing the time frame for the piece along with Thom's recordings aka "The Turner Tapes."

Night of the Beagle (Original Version)

"Night of the Beagle" is, naturally, instrumental. Another great title, which fits my songwriting style of "Title first, figure out what the rest is later". Yet another "Variation On The Carlos Santana Secret Chord Progression", if you can believe it. It can be found here.

Mark Carter-Night of the Beagle <--Click here to listen

Thom Turner's Tunes

I digitized Thom's recordings a few years back and collected them into an album I call "They Don't Make 'Em Like They Used To" (another of his originals). Even made an album cover.
They Don't Make 'Em Like
                    They Used To


"Love her, yes, I love her, and she'll live forever in my memory"
MexicLo <--Click here to listen

The Bull
"Golden Mexico"
 The Bull <--Click here to listen

Southern Loving Magazine
"It's just like a scene from Southern Loving Magazine"
Southern Loving MagazinI'e <--Click here to listen

What more is there to say about these songs? They pretty much speak for themselves, on one level, though obviously if you grew up around that part of Florida in the 1970-80's and knew the guy you appreciate these gems on a different level. For Trixie, my brother, and myself, it's practically a time machine.

Night of the Beagle (Pretzel Sisters Mix)

So, what to do? After several rejected proposals, and at least as many beers, Trixie suggested that Snoopy, being the first well-known beagle we could come up with, could have a "real" night, if you know what I mean, nudge nudge, say no more.

Once down the path, it astounded us how perfectly naturally the contextual material joined the new, improved Night of the Beagle. To fully explain our compositional process, we're going to annotate alongside the lyrics...

Night of the Beagle <--Click here to listen

Night of the Beagle
The Pretzel Sisters (feat. Mark Carter)

<bass bump>
Tim: Okay, I hope everybody's having a good time tonight,
<bass bump>
Tim: I know we are.
Mamie: Look out!
Tim: We've got a special treat coming up after this tune for you. We've got a young lady in the audience.
Mamie: Look out!
Tim: Ladies and gentlemen, we have a small announcement...
Guy: Dick drunk. He doesn't know where he is, he knows who he is, he knows who he came with and he's leaving with her, a real nice lady, Jeannie...
Mamie: Look out!
Guy: There he is, right over here...
Tim: Alright, here's a  little Santana...
Mamie: Look out!

<phone rings>
Charlie Brown: Hello?
Peppermint Patty: Hiya, Chuck, this is Peppermint Patty. I need a little help Chuck.
Charlie Brown: What can I do for you?
Peppermint Patty: My dad's going out of town again. Can Snoopy come over and be my watchdog?
Charlie Brown: I don't see why not. He's not doing anything.
<Snoopy laughs>
Charlie Brown: Except reading his favorite book about the bunny wunnies. I'll send him right over.
<Snoopy laughs>
Charlie Brown: That was Peppermint Patty. She'd like you to be her watchdog.
<Snoopy laughs>
Tim: I'd also like to remind you to be sure to get your tickets to the Cadillac that Delta's giving away.

Your daddy is away
I come over to play
'Cause Playboy is nice
But Peppermint's sweeter

<Thom Turner: Golden Mexico>

I dream of Mexican shores
Stories of old matadors
And I'll take you there
You'll be my senior-eeter

Soy tu perro
Eres mi puta
Night of the Beagle

<Thom Turner: Mexicooo>

Soy tu perro
Eres mi puta
Night of the Beagle

It's just like a scene
From Southern Lovin'
Magazine, querida
Let's go back to your room
<Snoopy laughs>

<Thom Turner: Love Her, Yes I Love Her, And She'll Live Forever In My Memory>

<Beagle howls and continues howling>
Peppermint Patty: Oh, good grief! Auuugh! Auuugh! Quit pushing! Ow!
Marcie: Sir, you're making too much noise. Can't you just kiss him goodnight and let it go at that?
Peppermint Patty: If I ever get off this waterbed I'll kick him, not kiss him! Marcie! Help me get off this waterbed! Aaaaugh! Ah!

Now the bull it has gone
I know I should just move on
But something this way
Makes me want to stay

<Thom Turner: Golden Mexico>

Those lucky few that know
Golden old Mexico
They know what we do
Cause they do it too
<Snoopy laughs>

Soy tu perro
Eres mi puta
Night of the Beagle

Trixie: (I'm gonna buy me a dog)

Soy tu perro
Eres mi puta
Night of the Beagle

Tim: Uh! Alright!
Mamie: Uh!
Tim: Thank you!
Trixie: Larry Cornwall on keyboards
Tim: We're gonna slow it down a little bit
Mamie: Thank you, you're beautiful!
Tim: Here's one by The Rutles

Night of the Beagle

Start out setting the scene with a classic lounge line from Tim.
Mamie's repeated "Look Out!" foreshadows the parody to come

The "young lady in the audience" refers to the Pretzel Sisters and Mamie singing this number.

The "Dick Clark is drunk" is not only funny, it also helps makes the transition over to...

The Santana number we used to play in The Tim Tew Four - I don't think it had a name. Tim always just called it "Santana" or "A Little Santana". Of course, NotB is basically "a little Santana" too, so...

This clip is from "Snoopy's Getting Married, Charlie Brown" and once found established a great deal of what came to be Night of the Beagle.

The beauty of this clip is the way we didn't have to do anything to it; once we found where to drop it in, it just fell in place.

The dad out of town
*That evil cackle*
The "book about the bunny wunnies" being a Playboy
The stage is set...

And then Tim, A) to remind you it's a TTF song B) because that's exactly what Tim would do. Take a 5 second pause in a song and fill it with banter.

Uncanny the way Thom's "Mexicos" match up, then again, that's the point.

The verses liberally steal from Thom's songs to tie this song to them. Taking that a step further, "Golden Mexico" becomes the metaphor for Snoopy's designs

The translation:
I am your dog
You are my bitch
Sounds so much more radio-friendly in Spanish, don't you think?

When Snoopy speaks/sings in Spanish, his alter ego comes out, who sounds like that guy from Moulin Rouge. This is his first appearance.

The next two sections are, to Mamie, the most fascinating. Each sister had a major design influence on one of the two

They're like contrasting studies in cinematic collaboration by directorial greats

Trixie carefully spliced and edited tempo/duration to create the "Love Her" piece. It's like Alfred Hitchcock teamed with Salvador Dali in Spellbound.

This, however, is Mamie's work. Think David Cronenberg and William S. Burroughs making "Naked Lunch". The main clip is from "Race For Your Life, Charlie Brown" and very funny in its original context. Combined here with real beagles howling, howling...well... it's..."Golden Mexico"...
*:-S worried

Okay, that was about as offensive as it gets, let's wrap up the concept with some good ol' Thom-based lyrics

Every one of these "Golden Mexico" bits cracks us up no end. Sorry if it's too inside a joke.

Tie it all up in a bow
Golden old Mexico
You know what it means
Some disgusting things
*and that evil cackle*

For the choruses, we split into three parts and spread over the stereo. Most right is Mamie/Snoopy normal, most left is Snoopy/Rooxxaannnee Dude, and center is a high-pitched choir filling with key words

Requisite Monkees reference


Wrap it up, Tim

Trixie mentioning Larry the keyboard player

Mamie's standard closing remark
Actually, I think Tim says "The Eagles", but damn if every time I listen I don't hear "The Rutles" *;) winking