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While never quite reaching the dizzy heights of Gangnam Style, New Zealand has plenty of novelty songs in its musical history. Finding inspiration in anything from convenience foods to the onset of middle age, local musicians have mined the genre to great effect, achieving some notable sales along the way.Baked Beans proved an unlikely but successful muse for Dunedin band Mother Goose, who scored their biggest hit with this ode to the romance promoting qualities of the tinned favourite. Released in 1977, the song became a substantial smash on both sides of the Tasman, with the hilarious video among the most played clips in Australia that decade.Watch the video for Mother Goose Baked Beans here:A novelty song with a message, The Knobz’ 1980 anthem Culture? was fuelled by political unrest. Then Prime Minister Rob Muldoon had refused to lift a 40 per cent sales tax on recorded music (originally instituted by Labour in 1975), adding insult to injury by dubbing NZ’s current crop of pop groups “horrible.” In response, The Knobz penned this top five hit, with sample lyrics including “I can buzz around like a Beehive boy, but I’d like to see you do my job.”See the video for The Knobz Culture? cheap nfl jerseys here:If there is a message to be found in Monte Video’s Shoop Shoop Diddy Wop Cumma Cumma Wang Dang, we’re not sure it would be entirely appropriate to share it here. Written by and starring veteran Auckland musician Murray Grindlay, the song reached number two in New Zealand, and scored releases in the UK and Australia. An ode to the joys of middle age, it clearly resonated with many, quickly claiming the number one slot. But not everyone was a fan; Life Begins at 40 also had the honour of being named the second worst song ever by RipItUp, prompting Luther to ring the magazine and enquire why it wasn’t number one.Watch Dave and the Dynamos Life Begins at 40 here:It seems even the power of “thousands of luminous spheres” couldn’t help infomercial queen Suzanne Paul in her quest to break into music. In 1994 Paul released Blue Monkey, a dance pop number sampling memorable phrases from her TV sales pitches. All the ingredients were there: notable guest vocalist (Boh Runga), a choreographed dance routine, but alas world domination in music was not to be. A lot of fun was had in the trying though.You can see the video for Blue Monkey here:JGeek and the Geeks came to national prominence as finalists in the 2012 series of New Zealand’s Got Talent, but had already received attention with their debut single M Boy. Released in 2010, the track fused M with the worlds of fashion and beauty, colliding in a Mika inspired celebration of what it means to be a modern ‘M boy.’ The video gained considerable traction, clocking up 100,000 YouTube views in just 10 days.Watch the video for JGeek and the Geeks M Boy here:Thank you for sharing your views. Your comment has been received, you need to verify your registration before the comment can be moderatedPlease check your inbox and click the verification link to complete the registration. Once you login, you can post further comments and view comments made in your profile.

O Canada sings of Christmas

Nearing the Christmas season, Mark Donnelly and his family sing the advent prayer before dinner.

A composer since high school, it’s not uncommon for him to stop and think of how the family of 11 can improve upon the song’s arrangement.

The 51 year old singer, most recognized for performing the national anthem at major sporting events, says its hard to switch hats between family man and conductor.

“If you get into music as a profession, you’re always analyzing it to make it better.”

The father of nine children will be hosting a Christmas concert featuring himself, and members of his family.

His sons Sean, 21, Lawrence, 16, Francis, 13, and his daughters Colleen, 19, Theresa, 16, and Allanna, 10, will be performing in the show titled “A Donnelly Family Christmas,” on Friday, Dec. 23 at the Clarke Theatre in Mission.

The children grew up listening to their father pursue a variety of music.

Donnelly performed as a lyric tenor and conductor throughout high school and university, and has since sang in many recitals, operas, oratorios and musical theatre productions in both Canada and the United States. He has also been a member of the Vancouver Opera Chorus since 2001.

While the artists loves being on stage, he enjoys sharing the limelight. It’s what inspired him to create the tradition of holding up the mike to the audience, when singing the anthem at events.

“It takes the focus off me. An anthem invites people, so its quite fitting that everybody sing it.”

Donnelly says there may be some sing a long moments during the Christmas concert as well.

Expect some hit Christmas carol classics such as “Jingle Bells,” along with other more complicated arrangements sung in Latin with five part harmonies.