King Tut

Steve Martin as King Tut The show exhibiting the artifacts of the grave of Tutankhamen ('Tut' to his friends) was terribly popular in the late 1970's, and it in fact continued from 1976 to 1979. Over eight million visitors marveled at the opulence of the boy king.

More importantly for us, however, it inspired Steve Martin to write a novelty hit song. At the time Martin was a frequent guest on the then-fledgling Saturday Night Live show, and debuted the song in April, 1978, in a musical performance. Martin was dressed in a faux-Pharaoh outfit, with his backup band, the Toot-Uncommons (members of the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band) bringing up the rear. The performance of the song propeled the accompanying single to #17 on the American charts, and helped nudge sales of Martin's comedy album A Wild and Crazy Guy. (The record appeared as a regular 45-rpm with the banjo instrumentals "Sally Goodin" and "Hoedown At Alice's" on the B-side, and in a second version with the comedy routine "Excuse Me" on the flipside.)

I was one of the kids watching SNL during its early run, and I was absolutely mad for any appearance of Martin on the show (or off, for that matter). I had two of his comedy albums and also owned the "Tut" 45. Simply uttering any of Martin's catchphrases ("Hello foxes!" "We are two wild and crazy guys!") was enough to garner a few minutes' attention from the pretty girls at school. Good times, man. Good times.

King Tut
(words and music by Steve Martin)
Now when he was a young man,
He'd never thought he'd see,
(King Tut)
People stand in line,
To see the boy king.
(King Tut)
How'd you get so funky?
(Funky Tut)
They said you do the monkey.
(Born in Arizona, moved to Babylonia, King Tut)
(King Tut)
Now if I'd known,
They'd line up just to see him,
(King Tut)
I'd've taken all my money,
And bought me a museum.
(King Tut)
Buried with a donkey,
(Funky Tut)
He's my favorite honkey!
(Born in Arizona, moved to Babylonia, King Tut)
Dancing by the Nile,
(Disco dancing)
The ladies love his style.
(Fox Tut)
Rockin' for a mile,
(Rockin' Tut)
He ate a crocodile.
He gave his life for tourism.
(King Tut)
(Tut, tut. Tut, tut...)
Golden idols!
He's an Egyptian!
They're selling you.
(King Tut)
Now when I die,
Now don't think I'm a nut.
(King Tut)
Don't want no fancy funeral,
Just one like old King Tut.
(King Tut)
He could'a won a Grammy,
(King Tut)
Buried in his 'jammies.
(Born in Arizona, moved to Babylonia, he was born in Arizona)
He's got a condo made of stone-a...
(King Tut)