Here’s something I’ve been wanting to make a Top Ten list of for quite a while: comedy songs. This may well be a rather UK-centric list as many of my memories are of songs that were released by UK comedians/artists. Remember, as ever, this is just my own personal list, often based more on personal nostalgia. It’s not the ‘best’ top ten. It’s just my favourite top ten.

Harry Enfield – Loadsamoney (Doin’ up the house)
I loved the Loadsamoney character by Harry Enfield but sadly this isn’t the best song.

Weird Al – Eat It and Fat
I know many US readers will be extremely disappointed that Weird Al doesn’t feature in my actual Top Ten, but I never really felt that he became as big in the UK as he was in the UK. ‘Eat It‘ and ‘Fat‘ were massive hits, and these are the ones I’m adding as honourable mentions. The ‘Fat’ video in particular had some absolutely iconic moments. They very nearly did make it into my Top Ten and one of them would probably be around the no.11 spot, but sadly my UK nostalgia made other songs beat it to the post.

Toy Dolls – Nellie the Elephant
This is a song that I particularly loved, and it was played at so many parties and school discos in the mid-80s and beyond. I guess it didn’t make my main Top Ten because it’s actually just a cover of an old song, albeit done in a more fun way.

Alexei Sayle – Ull John Gotta New Motor
I remember this coming out and it being hilarious. Back when Alexei was in his prime. It’s slightly repetitive now but still good fun. And it spawned a fun Toshiba advert.

Bernard Cribbins – Right Said Fred
Such a classic song that it spawned the name of a band itself. Great song and great video. Very nearly made it into my top ten.

The Goodies – The Funky Gibbon
I never really experienced this one myself as it came out in 1975. It’s a great Top of the Pops clip though, and I do have a lot of fond memories of The Goodies TV show. It’s a pretty iconic song for the generation just above me I believe.

Mel and Kim – Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree
This is one of my favourite Christmas Songs, and I have strong nostalgic memories of it for that reason. That nearly pushed it into my top ten, but it just misses out.

Now let’s get on with the proper Top Ten list.

10 – The Brat – Chalkdust (The Umpire Strikes Back)
This one isn’t an amazing song to be honest, but I remember the impact it had when it came out. Everyone was talking about it. The John McEnroe outburst was still lampooned heavily in TV comedy shows and this song version was a massive hit. The ‘chalkdust’ line would be quoted a lot whenever my friends and I played tennis.

9 – Joe Dolce – Shaddap You Face
This one deserves to be on the list as it is so well known and so often referenced. But for me personally I only learnt about it later on as it came out in 1980 when I was only 4. So it doesn’t quite have the nostalgic factor for me that some others on this list have.

8 – A Tribe of Toffs – John Kettley (Is A Weatherman)
This is possibly a very random one, even to UK readers, but I absolutely loved this song. It was back in the day, in the late 80s when weather presenters were big stars. People like John Kettley, Michael Fish, Francis Wilson, Ian McCaskill and of course, my personal favourite, Wincey Willis. To have a song written about these presenters was hilarious to me. I remember first hearing the song on one of the Saturday morning TV shows such as Going Live! The final lines about Ian McCaskill and Wincey Willis just cracked me up. The song reached no.21 in the UK charts and the band even performed on Wogan. What a fun 15 mins of fame these guys had.

7 – Charles Jolly Penrose – The Laughing Policeman
This song is an absolute classic. When I was a kid we had an LP that I used to play over and over. It was called All Aboard! and had such legendary songs as The Laughing Policeman, The Ugly Ducking, Robin Hood, Right Said Fred, Nellie the Elephant, Sparky’s Magic Piano and more. It actually contains three of the songs in this Top Ten and one in the honourable mentions! But the Laughing Policeman really is an iconic children’s/comedy song. It’s very hard to listen to it and not smile. The song was recorded in 1922 but it’s actually a remake of an earlier song from 1898 called The Laughing Song by George W Johnson, with the same tune but different words.

6 – Andy Cameron – Ally’s Tartan Army
This one is not only for UK readers but primarily Scottish readers. I wonder how many, if any, English viewers remember it. Scotland, although never a great football team, used to pride itself on qualifying for more football World Cups than England. Not a mean feat. And the classic (and cheeky) line in this song, which allows it to be classed as a comedy song in my eyes was the line “We’re representing Britain so we’ve got to do or die. England cannae dae it cos they didnae qualify!”. We owned this song as a vinyl single and I still have it. The B side was great too, as it had “I want tae be a punk rocker but ma mammy willnae let me.” Classic Andy Cameron.

5 – Cliff Richard and The Young Ones – Living Doll
This one really does hold a special place in my heart. Me and my friends used to absolutely love this song when it came out in 1986 when we were 10 years old. We certainly knew who Cliff Richard was but we had never heard his classic hit Living Doll before, so it was like a whole new song to us. And we kind of new The Young Ones but we hadn’t seen all their shows. They were deemed to be more edgy comedy directed at adults more than kids, so it felt a bit dangerous having them involved in this Comic Relief song, and it was exciting for us to have this opportunity to see into the anarchic Young Ones world. This is one of the songs that I remember pouring over the lyrics of in Smash Hits. The story goes that Adrian Edmondson was so loud that they had to get him to stand at the very back of the recording studio. Not sure if that’s true but it’s definitely a good story. I just love Rik Mayall’s opening monologue.

4 – The Firm – Star Trekkin’
This song was a behemoth. It reached no.1 in the UK charts in 1987, was absolutely everywhere and for a comedy song it probably got the most airplay on the radio of any song I had heard before. The original Star Trek was very much in the public zeitgeist and this song was so funny, with a great stop motion video (very trendy at the time). I’ve tried singing this song at karaoke, which I have to say was great fun too. The structure of the song is obviously very funny with all the main characters getting a line each to repeat, but I love when it all starts to go wrong at the end and Scotty and Bones say “Ye cannae change the script, och, see you, Jimmy! It’s worse than that, it’s physics, Jim!”

3 – Spitting Image – The Chicken Song
This Spitting Image song feels to me to be very much along the same lines as the Star Trekkin’ song in the place above. It was released only a year earlier, in 1986, and I remember how unique it seemed when it was released. Again, like the Young Ones above, Spitting Image was a show that kids of my age weren’t always allowed to watch as some of its content was satirical or slightly risque. But this song was just downright bizarre. The lyrics were hilarious to myself and all my ten year old friends. I remember us singing this every day on the school bus home. I can still remember most of the lyrics to this day. Interestingly the lyrics were written by Rob Grant and Doug Naylor, just a couple of years before they launched Red Dwarf.

2 – Benny Hill – Ernie, The Fastest Milkman in the West
Now we’re getting onto the big guns. I know many people don’t like Benny Hill now and a lot of his work hasn’t aged particularly well, but putting that aside, this is a great song. It was apparently written by Benny Hill too, which is impressive, although I’m not sure if that’s just the lyrics. But this song really has got everything; it’s got a proper story, funny lyrics, drama, sad bits and an all round great tune. It was a well deserved Christmas No.1 in the UK charts in 1971. And I can say from personal experience that it’s a good song to do at karaoke!

1 – Victoria Wood – Let’s Do It (The Ballad of Barry and Freda)
I very nearly did put Benny Hill’s Ernie at the No.1 spot but I just kept coming back to this amazing song by Victoria Wood. It just makes me smile every time. It’s so well written and Victoria Wood is just so likeable that you can’t help smiling along with her. I don’t know if it was ever released. I think I’ve perhaps seen two or maybe three instances on YouTube of her performing it live. The one that I remember seeing live on television was on An Audience With Victoria Wood, which is perhaps the most famous version of it and the one I’ve put below. Some of the lines are just genius. “Beat me up the bottom with the Woman’s Weekly”, “Come and melt the buttons on my flameproof nightie”. Well done Victoria Wood on having my no.1 comedy song. Well deserved.