On November 17, Gary Garcia, one half of the Buckner/Garcia team that brought Pac-Man Fever to the radio waves, passed away.

I actually was lucky enough to get the album in the early 1980’s as a record (think of it as a large, black colored CD for you younger folk), and played it as endlessly as I poured over the record jacket memorizing Pac-Man patterns. To me, the album was great fun as it had the actual arcade sound effects instead of the wimpy “bonk bonk bonk” noise of the Atari 2600 version. The arcade always sounded more exciting.

In the late 1990’s, the duo brought the same album to the CD age by remastering the album, so I got that as well as the photo listed on the duo’s above-listed webpage.

Pac-Man Fever is one of those many footnotes in how deeply Pac-Man had ingrained himself in the public consciousness. Outside of Mario, no video game character has ever truly taken gamer and non-gamer alike in a rush of cartoons, bedsheets, breakfast cereals, T-shirts, pajamas, toys, games…. You had to have something of the actual “Pac-Man Fever”, and the song only played into that moment of a pop culture phenomenon. To me, the song still defines that moment.

It’s always a sad thing to see one of the people who made that era of gaming so enjoyable pass on. In that regard, he will be missed, and I think it’s worth a reprise of that old video gaming anthem:

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Filed under: classic gamingpac-man