by TODD SPENCE (twitter)
There’s the Tiny Tim from the Charles Dickens classic A Christmas Carol who has become a symbol of the Christmas season. And then there’s the other Tiny Tim who was a popular singer/songwriter in the late 1960’s, eventually recording one of the most INSANE Christmas songs ever; “Santa Claus Has Got the Aids This Year”. You absolutely read that correctly.
To give you a little background, “Tiny Tim” (born Herbert Khaury) was a big staple for television in the 1960’s and ’70’s, making constant appearances on popular variety shows throughout that era as the weirdo with the uekelele and falsetto/vibrato voice, until he eventually faded into obscurity. He had a few popular songs, mainly known for the tune Tiptoe Through The Tulips, but for our money, it’s this cheerful ode to Santa getting a deadly disease that really makes this particular “Tiny Tim” a legend this season.
“Santa Claus Has Got the Aids This Year” was recorded in 1980, but was actually later released in the 1990’s as one of Tiny Tim’s previously un-released recordings. Tiny later claimed that he actually meant Ayds, a candy bar from the 1970’s that was marketed as an appetite suppressant.
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Santa Clause taking a dietary supplement? I don’t think so. Especially when the song has Santa crying out “Oh, this is Santa Claus saying I won’t be here this year! I’m sick in bed with the AIDS! Oh but I’ll be back next year! Next year! Oh, don’t cry for me, a doctor will cure me!”. How does Tiny Tim envision Santa getting the AIDS to begin with? From the reindeer? From those damn elves I bet. The possiblities are endless and pretty twisted.
But, then again, what do you expect from a songwriter who prefers suits made of Budweiser beer labels.
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“Santa Claus Has Got The Aids” later placed as #15 in Dr. Demento’s “19 Worst Song Titles Ever” list in the New Book of Lists published in 2005.