Remember Timmy Mallett…or maybe you don’t want to. It was, after all, an “Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini”!
80’s UK kids TV presenter Timmy Mallett (yes that is his real name) was born in 1955 and spent a decade bashing kids heads in with a giant foam mallet, while in the presence of his faithful cockatiel, Magic. Wacaday, or the Wide Awake Club, was the morning kids magazine than ran from 1985 to 1992 and was mostly and excuse for utter nonsense, coining catchphrases like “Blaaah” and “Utterly Brilliant”. But at the height of his fame, Timmy teamed up with none other than Sir Andrew Lloyd-Webber to storm the music charts, and storm they did.
Using the name Bombalurina, a character from Webber’s musical, Cats, Timmy and two female vocalists, recorded Brian Hyland’s 1960 US chart topper, “Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini” and in August 1990, he took it to the top of the UK singles chart, becoming the twelfth biggest seller of the year. Timmy thought he was on to something now and in December that year, he recorded The Avons’ 1959 hit “7 Little Girls Sitting In The Backseat” and reached No.18. That same month, ‘Bombalurina’ released a album, “Huggin’ And A Kissin'”, which was geared at party’s and mostly children.
In 1991, Timmy recorded a version of “The Laughing Policeman” with Beatles producer George Martin while the following Summer, using the new name ‘Del Costa’, Mallett released a version of “Hot, Hot, Hot”. Neither of these songs charted and after the end of Wacaday, it seemed that was that. Timmy popped up again in 2008 when he featured on the reality series I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! and that same year on Big Brother. Timmy returned to music in 2013 when he recorded a new version of Gilbert O’Sullivan’s “Ooh-Wakka-Doo-Wakka-Day”. He is to be found touring holiday camps and theatres around the UK either in panto on with his one man show.
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