Super Mario Land – The Ambassadors of Funk featuring M.C. Mario (1992)
Nintendo were irrefutably one of the pop culture juggernauts in the United Kingdom in the early 1990s. Mario in particular was a household name, helped in no small part by being converted into every entertainment medium and piece of merchandise possible.
With the video games charts filled with their products and an upcoming live-action movie aiming to make a splash at the box office (that would eventually deter Nintendo from making any more filmic adaptations), it seemed all but inevitable that Nintendo would try to make their mark on the music charts too.
The amazingly/awfully named The Ambassadors of Funk (a pseudonym for phenomenally successful DJ and producer Simon Harris) fully ‘funked’ up Hirokazu Tanaka’s catchy level one theme from Super Mario Land in true early 90s style.
I’ve got to admit, as a kid it was one of the coolest things ever to hear Game Boy chip tunes on the radio, at school discos and on BBC’s Top of the Pops even if it was surrounded by some fairly generic rap and hip-hop beats.
‘Super Mario Land’ peaked at #8 in the UK charts in November 1992. It was also released in several other European countries as well as Japan, with the latter receiving an entire album of remixed Mario music by ‘The Ambassadors’ called ‘Super Mario Compact Disco’.