The Good Ole Radio

The radio these days is silent, and void of what once was a golden phenomenon. Today you never hear much about these masters of the one hit wonder. Let's take a short visit back in time to a much simpler time, before music videos started to dominate the airwaves. Back in the day they were all sensations beyond belief with just about every age group imaginable, and no one could seem to get enough of these little music machines. However today they are all but missing in action.

There has been an untold amount of one hit wonders over the years like "Come on Eileen" by the English pop group Dexys Midnight Runners, "99 Red Balloons" Performed By Nena, "Mickey" by Toni Basil, "Funky Town" by Lipps, Inc, "Don't Worry Be Happy" by musician Bobby McFerrin, "Electric Avenue" by Eddy Grant, "Ghostbusters" by Ray Parker Jr., and many many more. A one hit wonder is simply a term used to describe music performers with only one hit single that ever really amounted to anything. Normally it's a person or an act known mainly for only one single success in their career. However this one particular one hit wonder really stands out, because of the way these talented little guys were performing this remix of the great Marvin Gaye's legendary 1968 song.

Never before or ever again will there be such a sensation as this group, who all came out of the state of California back in 1986. I'm talking about the one and only singing & dancing California Raisins. Even though they were all simply dried grapes, the California Raisins all experienced high popularity back in the mid-to-late 1980s making a strong impression through animated endeavors.

It seems just like yesterday, but I can still vividly remember these little plastic raisins, which all were acquired from out of a tasty McDonald's happy meal, lined up on my desk belting out a chorus of "I heard it through the grapevine". It was really a struggle back in those times to get a complete set of the California raisins. There was a lot of tough competition from everyone else and their mother who were also trying to get all of those California raisins for their collections, however with a little trading it could be done. I'm not sure today if I ever had the complete set of those little singing & dancing California raisins, because they kept adding more and more different figurines as time went on, but I can tell you it wasn't for any lack of trying. As I wrote this hub for all to read and see, I looked high and low for my collection of California raisins, however to this very moment they are all still missing in action.

The song "I heard it through the grapevine" is one of those magical songs that if you hear it or just start whistling it, will be in your head all day long. I dare you to even try to attempt to say otherwise.

Have you ever heard a song and had the lyrics stuck in your head all day long?

  • Yes.
  • No.
  • Yes, but the song eventually fell out sometime during the day.
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Comments 12 comments

Jodah profile image

Jodah 21 months ago from Queensland Australia

Nice hub theholestory, I remember the song by Marvin Gaye "I Heard it on the Grapevine" well, though I cannot recall the California Raisins as hard as I try. My family was never one for McDonalds so maybe it's something I missed out on there. The figurines look great. I do remember all the other one hit wonders you mentioned though. I found this very interesting, voted up.


aesta1 profile image

aesta1 21 months ago from Ontario, Canada

Memories so precious. The radio was the principal form of entertainment the first few years of my growing up and it was on the whole day as far as I can remember. Thank God we had rooms to run to and have some peace. We did not have McDonalds where I grew up but the the same songs were popular.


Susan Hambidge profile image

Susan Hambidge 21 months ago from Hertfordshire, England

Dexys Midnight Runners were at least a two hit wonder - 'Geno" was just as big as 'Eileen'!! Nice piece hole story, thank you


CorneliaMladenova profile image

CorneliaMladenova 21 months ago from Cork, Ireland

This hub brought me so many memories. I still remember how the communists in my native country deprived us from hearing western music and news. After the so called perestroika which changed almost nothing we ware able to hear all those hits you mentioned. So late :(


Nicoinstitches profile image

Nicoinstitches 21 months ago from Ottawa, ON

Totally remember the California Raisins. I even had those dolls! I even watched their Christmas special.


Shades-of-truth profile image

Shades-of-truth 21 months ago from USA

Well, certainly I remember the California Raisins. We had quite a few of the figures. They were unforgettable! Glad you brought them back to my memory.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 21 months ago from High desert of Nevada.

Love this hub! I still have my radio in my dining room (now home office) and listen to it often. It is not quite the same as the old days, but still enjoyable at times. I like classical music, local and national news and a few talk shows.

When my siblings and I were kids we listened to mystery shows (The Shadow was our favorite), Amos and Andy, George and Gracie, and lots of other shows.

The radio is still alive in my home and I enjoy it. Thanks for this hub.


Betsy Scott Fitzm profile image

Betsy Scott Fitzm 21 months ago from Marietta, Georgia

Loved this article, and I loved Marvin Gaye's rendition of "I Heard it Through the Grapevine;" nice memories.


MJ Martin profile image

MJ Martin 21 months ago from Washington State

OMG! I can't find my California Raisin collection either! CCR sang "Heard it Through the Grapevine" too. I still play my portable radio every sunday morning listening to Breakfast with the Beatles. These funky raisins do bring back hilarious laughter. Awesome!


Cynthia Hoover profile image

Cynthia Hoover 21 months ago from Newton, West Virginia

Great Hub! I still listen to the radio everyday! I have "dance" time with my son, well he dances and plays while I clean. I much prefer good old radio to anything today!


Marina7 profile image

Marina7 21 months ago from Clarksville TN

I hate when a song gets stuck in my head unless that song is a nice Christian song :-)


Rachel L Alba profile image

Rachel L Alba 21 months ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

I think we had a radio just like that one in the picture. It sure looks so familiar. We still have a radio in our bathroom that goes on as soon as one of us goes in. Thanks for this nice hub. Voted up.

Blessings.

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