Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Wunnerful, Wunnerful

Oh god, this made me laugh until I almost cried. Here "Gail and Dale", the perky, steam-cleaned duo on Lawrence Welk are singing "One toke over the line." The song was a hit by Brewer and Shipley in 1971, but some radio stations banned it BECAUSE IT WAS ABOUT SMOKING WEED! Did anybody at the Lawrence Welk show have a clue what the song was about? Nooo. Why ol' Lawrence thought it was a "modern spiritual." Too funny! Just throw out the name "Jesus" a few times and folks think you're walkin' that gospel road.

Tom Shipley has been quoted as saying,"When we wrote 'One Toke Over the Line,' I think we were one toke over the line. I considered marijuana a sort of a sacrament."

Brewer says of the song's origin: "We wrote that one night in the dressing room of a coffee house. We were literally just entertaining ourselves. The next day we got together to do some picking and said, 'What was that we were messing with last night?' We remembered it, and in about an hour, we'd written 'One Toke Over the Line.' Just making ourselves laugh, really. We had no idea that it would ever even be considered as a single, because it was just another song to us. Actually Tom and I always thought that our ballads were our forte."


  1. oh, mr. welk! a modern spiritual. tooooo funny. i want the girl's false eyelashes. very cool. i can almost see a look of contempt in her face at one point when she looks at geeky man, standing there with his hand around her waist. boy, the backstage stories from the lawrence welk show...probably would curl your hair! love this post, simone.

  2. The guy who announced them had a frog in his throat -- maybe he just had a big toke before they went on the air.

  3. But earth manual says this Jesus and Mary units as wide occurring deities. Multiple confusion about this "toke" and where line location.

    Why does human units no more shows by benevolent Welk unit?

  4. OMG they are so stoned!

  5. Ha ha --enjoying all your comments. Sue, I saw the same thing. I bet she was secretly thinking, "Get your hands off me you no-talent loser!"

    As Marc and Mich said, looks like Myron Floren might have been having more fun on the show than I ever suspected. Now we get why everyone was always smiling.Who knew the Lawrence Welk show was really a stoner underground.

    Outer Space Alien, I don't know where to begin trying to explain this to you. As for the Welk unit, both him and his show reached the end of their usefulness and were discontinued, so to speak. But the shows can still be seen on various earth outlets known as PBS stations. Check your local listings. There are three such stations in the district we call Kansas that show the Welk unit. You can also find clips of the shows on YouTube, which is not an actual tube. Your earth manual should explain YouTube, unless it is several years old.

  6. Hearing that Larry was a "stern taskmaster" and ran a pretty tight ship, then watching his announcement re: a modern only thought was that somebody...everybody took great delight in letting him make that comment to a television audience. You could almost detect the chucklage in the background.
    Then again, there is a better than even chance that his audience wouldn't get it, anyway.

    H.(former...I repeat, FORMER long-haired, pot smokin' anarchist)B.

  7. I would think you would HAVe to be stoned to appear on that show with any regularity. Sometimes I think Lawrence Welk must have blasted his brains out on acid and this is what happened to him.

  8. H. --You a former, long-haired, pot-smokin' anarchist??! I never would have imagined it. (snark.)

    I think your right --I bet this was a big prank pulled on Mr. Welk. I bet some of the cast and most of the crew were in on the joke, and were rolling dying backstage over it.