Lost "Puc-Man Fever" Variant Challenges Everything You Think You Know About "Pac-Man Fever"
May 22, 2020
I know that you know all about Buckner & Garcia's famous "Pac-Man Fever" hit single from the 1981 album of the same name (seriously; it hit number nine on the Billboard Top 100 chart that year). After all, you have the original vinyl album, the cassette release, and even the 2002 re-recorded CD version and 2015 remix inspired by the Adam Sandler film Pixels. The poster is hanging on your wall right now, I bet. What you, the "Pac-Man Fever" superfan, are missing is an exclusive Japanese variant of the song that was re-recorded as "Puc-Man Fever" to match the famed video game character's original Japanese name. Lost Turntable has a look and a listen at this missing piece of gaming music history.
When the time came to release the song in Japan, Buckner & Garcia apparently went back into the studio to re-record the chorus of the song, changing every instance of “Pac” to “Puck.” If you ever wanted proof that record companies just had fucking millions to burn in the early 80s, there you go.
I highly doubt this version of the song ever got any other official release aside from the Japanese 7″ single. The album itself was never issued in Japan. Hell, the original version of “Pac-Man Fever” has never been re-issued on a proper Buckner & Garcia CD or digitally (any CD or iTunes version is a re-recorded take from the 90s). So I feel safe in assuming that this is a proper rarity.
Happy fortieth anniversary to you, Pac-Man, and thank you for everything you've done for the world of video games including, yes, "Pac-Man Fever". Next time: the horrifying secret behind "Do The Donkey Kong".