The Goons were a comedian group consisting of Spike Milligan, Harry Secombe, Peter Sellers and briefly Michael Bentine (between 1951 and 1953), who had a British radio comedy programme called The Goon Show, originally produced and broadcast by the BBC Home Service from 1951 to 1960, with occasional repeats on the BBC Light Programme. The show's chief creator and main writer was Spike Milligan. The scripts mixed ludicrous plots with surreal humour, puns, catchphrases and an array of bizarre sound effects. Some of the later episodes feature electronic effects devised by the fledgling BBC Radiophonic Workshop, many of which were reused by other shows for decades. Many elements of the show satirised contemporary life in Britain, parodying aspects of show business, commerce, industry, art, politics, diplomacy, the police, the military, education, class structure, literature and film.
Links To Peel
Peel listened to The Goon Show (most episodes of which were written by Milligan) during his National Service, enjoyed it and shared the enthusiasm for the anarchic style of comedy which made the show such a success with the listening public in the 1950s. Peel did play some of the group's comedy singles, especially on his 30 July 1969 show, where he played their Ying Tong Song. However, in Margrave of the Marshes (pp. 130-131) he admitted that he was not a member of the Goons' cult following, which has survived to the present day. In the twenty-first century, he said, the Goons simply sounded childish to him.
- 30 July 1969: The Ying Tong Song (7" - Bloodnok's Rock'n'Roll Call / The Ying Tong Song) Decca