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Disgracing the Family Name appeared on Skafish's self-titled debut album (1980). Jim Skafish's schizo-paranoid lyrics and vocals carry the song, and the frenetic beat and catchy melody elevate it almost to anthem status.

The song starts out with a few instrumental bars of The Swanee River before the drums, guitars, and synthesizers kick in. Except for borrowing one lyrical reference, there is no musical relation to Foster's classic. It's impossible to reproduce the lyrical phrasing - let it be said that reading the lyrics without knowing the music and phrasing leaves a lot to be desired.

This is one of my favorites from the early new-wave era. I've transcribed the lyrics as I hear them -- I don't believe there are any lyric sites to double-check them against.

Disgracing the Family Name

How are the old folks at home?

Grandmother built respect for family name
My father worked to keep it just the same
My mother was proud of family name
Paralyzing family name with paralysis

My brother, Peter, does not understand
My sister, Mary Lou, hopes the best
When I was small they knew I was a pest --
Pesky little moron
Now I am disgracing the family name
He is erasing the family name
He is erasing their fine, fine reputation
How are the old folks at home?

Parents rejected me -- household germ
I crawled through the garden with the worms
I am the rotten apple with the worms
Chewing at my core
Now I am disgracing the family name
He is erasing the family name
He is erasing their fine, fine reputation
Listen to them whine as they dine
Whi - whi - whi - whine

I started school at a primal age
Teachers were so enraged, hated me
I lifted old ladies dresses at age three
Dirty as a baby (goo goo)
Now I am disgracing the family name
He is erasing the family name
He is erasing, oh, their fine, fine reputation
How are the old folks at home?
(They hang their heads in shame)

Better leave the neighborhood
And change your name, 'cuz I am
Disgracing (destroy!) the family name
He is erasing (wrecking, ruining) the family name
He is erasing their fine, fine reputation
He is erasing their lovely reputation

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