It’s cartoon music appreciation time again! The song “Powerhouse” was penned by Raymond Scott in 1937 and it was released as a single the same year. At the time it wasn’t nearly as popular as some of Raymond Scott’s other songs, but its use in cartoons has made it his most popular tune today. “Powerhouse” consists of two seperate themes, “Powerhouse A” which was frequently used in cartoon chase scenes and “Powerhouse B” which was frequently used in assembly line or industrial scenes. I counted more than 40 cartoons which used one or both parts of the song but the first use was in “Porky Pig’s Feat.” Here’s The Raymond Scott Quintette performing the number on “Your Show Of Shows” in 1955.
Raymond Scott was a musician, a composer, a band leader, and an inventor. In short, the man was a genius. He was also, by all accounts, a bit of an ass. We’ve discussed genius + addiction and genius + madness before on this blog but one trend I’ve noticed but never mentioned is a lot of these guys were also royal bastards! Obviously being a jerk goes hand in hand with addiction and sometimes with mental illness too but geez, didn’t anyone ever get addicted to happy pills or laughing gas?