Chubby Checker Song about Dig Dug Found on Cassette Tape
Thanks to the Video Game Preservation Dump and Matt Osborne, the son of former Atari vice president Don Osborne, we get to hear the lost recording that was supposed to used in a commercial with Checker providing the vocals. Unfortunately, Checker never recorded for the commercial, though the song was used and sung by different singers for the final advertisement (shown below).
With regard to the discovery of the cassette and the song itself, Matt Osborne said: “The only info that I have about it was that ATARI had envisioned a somewhat ‘50’s styled take on the song, inspired, in part, by Chubby Checker’s hit ‘The Twist.’ At the time that I’d heard the song and had got possession of the tape, it was fully intended that Chubby’s song would be used in the final commercial. It’s been over 30 years, that and I was about 13 at the time, so details are fuzzy, but I remember my father being extra excited that Chubby was involved in the project and had great things to say about having met him.”
Osborne, however, could not recall why Checker’s version was not used in the final cut of the commercial. He believes that maybe Checker “might have appealed to a much older audience and not the one that the commercial was targeted towards,” so it’d make sense that they went with younger singers.
You can listen to the song below, which is admittedly kind of really catchy, and watch the commercial that was supposed to feature Checker’s vocals. The world may never know why it was never used, but at least we’re able to listen to this song that was almost lost to history.