From Pac-Man Fever to Food Riots: an Interview with Jerry Buckner

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If you've ever willingly succumbed to the ravages of Pac-Man Fever, odds are you're a child of the 80s.

This was an era in which we didn’t have video games so conveniently set up in our homes, plugged into our 55 inch flat screen HDTVs.  We went to the arcade at a local mall or sought out the one or two machines in the local laundromat to get our game on.  No matter what you played back then, the undeniable king of the ‘cade was Pac-Man.  The obsession with arcade gaming became so great that it was no surprise that some fans turned to song to express their love for the craze.  And while Jerry Buckner and Gary Garcia never intended to make one of the biggest novelty records of the decade, their music has become the soundtrack for that era in the history of popular video gaming.

Speaking of soundtracks, these days they can be found on a short list of pop songs included on the Wreck-It Ralph album, which was a cinematic love letter to the classic arcade gaming era in its own right.  And although Gary passed away a little more than a year ago, Jerry is keeping their music and gaming legacy alive in tribute to his old pal.  We got to spend a little time talking to Jerry Buckner about their history and his current involvement in the launch of a new mobile game called Buckner & Garcia’s Cafeteria Food Riot.

food riot From Pac Man Fever to Food Riots: an Interview with Jerry Buckner The FREE lite version of Buckner & Garcia’s Cafeteria Food Riot is available now in the Apple App Store and Google Play.

And if you’re a long time fan and you want to check out the 30th Anniversary CD we talk about in the interview, you can find it and a lot more at

To get a feel for what the Pac-Man Fever craze was all about, here’s their debut performance of “Pac-Man Fever” on a little show called American Bandstand with Dick Clark. (For you kids out there who have no idea what American Bandstand is… it wasn’t just a “little show”. It was the show you wanted to be on. It’s how you know you’ve “made it”.)

Images: Buckner & Garcia

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