Tag Archives: XTC

Part 2: Original Songs and their Interpretations _ ‘Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead’

For the 2nd installment of my series, posting original songs and their cover versions, I present an example of confusion over which is which: ‘The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead’.

Although, commonly believed to be their original song, The Crash Test Dummies’ version of ‘The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead’ (released in 1994 for the ‘Dumb and Dumber’ film soundtrack) is in fact a cover version of XTC’s original, released in 1992. The Crash Test Dummies’ version is a more “comedic” treatment of the original, dropping the second verse: “Peter Pumpkinhead fooled them all. Emptied churches and shopping malls. When he spoke, it would raise the roof. Peter Pumpkinhead told the truth“.

XTC’s Andy Partridge has never been shy to controversy. His penchant for composing songs with strong opinion is evident throughout ‘The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead”, which makes controversial comparison of JFK’s assassination to the crucifixion of Christ; pretty heavy stuff for a pop song.

XTC: ‘The Ballad of Peter Pumpkin Head’


Crash Test Dummies: Cover version

XTC: CD Concept

XTC: CD concept (From a series of CD compilation concepts I am creating for my blog)

Concept, Selection, Design, Copywriting: Robert Kramberger

Andy Partridge – resident genius and stage shy Pagan.

XTC are:
Andy Partridge – resident genius and stage shy Pagan.
Colin Moulding – musician extraordinaire and balance.

Together, they are the core of XTC (other musicians/members have come and gone over the last 25 years).

This collection of songs covers a period from 1986 to their most release Apple Venus 2. As usual the music is quite eclectic: Classical, Jazz, Pop – and a whole lot of that special XTC sound. And yes, this is the original version of Peter Pumpkinhead (The Crash Test Dummies did a fine cover). The songs are acerbic, caustic, and occasionally controversial (Dear God got them a bit too much attention), but always with tongue firmly set in cheek.

Mr. Partridge is certainly not be a big fan of religion, marriage or touring, and for that we are most grateful. Where else would the inspiration for such superb music come from?

– Robert Kramberger 2015