Just as the last one-hit wonder – “Pac-Man Fever”, “Take Off” was another novelty hit. In case you hosers don’t know, Bob and Doug McKenzie were brothers who played on the Canadian show SCTV, eh. Bob was played by Rick Moranis and Doug was played by Dave Thomas (not the same Dave Thomas from the Wendy’s fast food chain). SCTV was a sketch comedy show, which was basically Canada’s version of Saturday Night Live. Bob and Doug’s segment was called “Great White North” (originally known as “Kanadian Korner”). Before long, the segment was the most popular of the show.
SCTV began to air in the U.S., and their popularity took off. The fad peaked around 1982/1983, when they produced a comedy album, and came out with their hit movie Strange Brew. The album, “The Great White North” went platinum, won a Grammy nomination and broke the top ten on Billboard’s Top LPs and Tapes list in March, 1982.
The song “Take Off” was released from that album, and became a #16 hit, peaking on March 27, 1982. The song featured fellow Canadian Geddy Lee of the rock group Rush chorusing between the McKenzies’ banter.
The album also featured the McKenzies’ own version of “The Twelve Days of Christmas”, which is frequently played on the radio around the holidays in both Canada and the United States.
However, “Take Off” was their only charted hit in the U.S.