Old song about emasculating Castro by giving him a crew cut

200911021301 I remember reading a book years ago that mentioned a CIA plan in the early 1960s to sprinkle thallium salts into Castro's boots, which "would cause his beard, eyebrows, and pubic hair to fall out... like a follicle deprived Samson."

Today, I listened to this catchy Tin Pan Alley song called "If Butch the Rough Barber Man Shaves Castro." Why did people in the 1960s think Castro's hair was so magical?

"If Butch the Rough Barber Man Shaves Castro" Thanks to WFMU's Bob Purse for finding this 45 and converting it to an MP3!


  1. As I recall reading somewhere (probably in one of the excellent Bathroom Readers series), the CIA actually approached Ian Fleming and asked him for ideas and he provided them with a few ideas including LSD on Castro’s SCUBA mouthpiece combined with itching powder in his wetsuit, to make him go crazy and drown; thallium salts in his cigars or hat to make his manly beard and hair fall out and thus emmasculate him; projecting a massive religious icon in the sky above Cuba to induce revolution against communism; and probably more that the CIA never actually tried.

  2. “Why did people in the 1960s think Castro’s hair was so magical?”

    surviving dozens of cia assasination attempts not enough?

  3. Fidel and Raul swore they would not shave their beards until the revolution was successful. That’s also why they continue to wear fatigues.

  4. The CIA in the 1960s seems to have had no idea how to conduct an assassination…. or almost anything else. Everything I read about them comes off sounding like very bad comic book plots.

  5. If that was a catchy tune for the 60’s I can understand how people were ready for something like the Beatles to come along show what music could really be again.

  6. I am also struck but the just awful production quality. Listen to the chorus on the accompanying “I-O-WA” song. It’s like they are not even trying to sing together.

    The trombone solo is awful too.

  7. Has the copyright on that song expired? Because if it hasn’t, ripping it to MP3 format and posting it online would be, er, copyright infringement.

  8. “Why did people in the 1960s think Castro’s hair was so magical?”

    because his beard is so lucious.

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