Tuesday, September 16, 2008

muppet music

Over on my MP3 blog I recently posted a Stevie Wonder track, and embedded the Youtube video of a mindblowing 6 minute version of Superstition that Stevie did on Sesame Street.

That sent me off on a bit of a Youtube trawl. I mean, if they can have straightforward funk heaven, what else did Sesame Street and the Muppets have? Not in terms of celebrity guests, but in terms of really good music.

The glowing gem is REM doing Shiny Happy People, with the lyrics altered to Furry Happy Monsters, sung by Stipe as he grins and bounces in simplistic kindergarten fashion.

Here's Alice Cooper doing - somewhat confusingly for a show with an explicitly educational brief - School's Out.

How about Scarborough Fair being done by that talented duo Simon and, er, Piggy?

Then Simon was back, serenading some muppets with a straight rendition of Long Long Day from One Trick Pony.

The muppets also played the man's material without him, doing a 50 Ways To Leave Your Lover. Which is nowhere as unlikely as their straight covers of For What It's Worth or While My Guitar Gently Weeps.

Miss Piggy had other singing partners. Here she is doing Jackson with Johnny Cash!

Cash seems to have taken up residence on Sesame Street. He was there again in 1992, with - kinnell! - Big Bird and The Count miming to his vocal.

Cooler still, in this one there's not only Johnny doing duets with a muppets, and there's a cartoon of Johnny too.

There's surely a proper DVD to be done.


Ryan Roe said...

Those are some great clips.

And as a Muppet geek, I can't help but point out that while Sesame Street is an educational show, The Muppet Show was not... It was just supposed to be an entertaining variety show. Which is how they got away with stuff like Alice Cooper singing about blowing up school, and Peter Sellers doing a song about "cigarettes and whiskey and wild, wild women."

merrick said...

Ryan, I couldn't tell if Cooper was a Muppet or Seasame Street thing. So I guessed at the latter as it'd be funnier.

Is that Sellers clip online anywhere?

It only adds weight to the need for a DVD of mental muppet music.

Ryan Roe said...

I just found the Peter Seller song on YouTube:


That episode is on DVD... the first three seasons are available now, and pretty much every episode has some great music. Have you seen the Sylvester Stallone episode? They gave him TWO musical numbers!