Cover Versions: Gene Wilder (Willy Wonka)’s Pure Imagination by Primus

Sad news yesterday about Gene Wilder passing away. 😦  Worst still over night Coldplay covered Pure Imagination somewhere so I’ve just got to post the best cover of the song to make up from that wrong.

In 2014 the band Primus not just did that one song but did the whole soundtrack, they called it re-imagining. The whole thing was written and composed by Leslie Bricusse & Anthony Newley back 1971 for the film Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory, off course. You say tell me something I don’t know? Well, how about the album Primus release of this re-imagining soundtrack tilted Primus & The Chocolate Factory With The Fungi Ensemble was the first since 1995 with Tim “Herb” Alexander back behind the drum kit. After Herb left Primus he worked a bit with Maynard James Keenan, played both in early A Perfect Circle and then later in Puscifer project. So the classic Primus line-up was back together for the first since the album Tales From The Punchbowl. Which is most famous for having the track called Wynona’s Big Brown Beaver on it which was very controversy at the time and some even think it was about actress Winona Ryder but songwriter Les Claypool denied this more than once. At one point he point the names spelled wrong and because of the spelling in the title and the country & western style of the music he was amazed people wasn’t asking him about C&W singer Wynonna Judd which didn’t help at all but just made it even more controversy in the mid-90’s. Then Judd’s boyfriend at his bands Soul Asylum gig re-named a song “Les Claypool’s a Big Fucking Asshole.”

Anyway Primus is now most famous for writing the South Park opening theme song, you know? My all-time favorite album by them would just have to be Sailing On A Sea Of Cheese from 1991. In the early 90’s they were one of the crazy bands you could see live too, the mosh pits was insane back then. The first time I seen them on was at a place with a second story balcony and people were running up there just to jump off into the most pit and the only time ever seen that happen at that venue or any one with a balcony for that matter. I think got to write more about this band sometime, OK?

Primus are just like the most prefect band to do this track and those other songs from that soundtrack. They’re just odd and weirdos unlike Coldplay, just boring mainstream stuff. That movie was just so freakish really, I remember seeing as a kid and think what hell is this? Anyway it’s not much about Gene Wilder here but not really a movie blog but here’s Les dressed-up as Gene’s Wonka live on stage in Dallas in 2014 with him on the big screen behind. Photo: Jason Janik

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