Awesome Music / Sesame Street
In all likelihood, any song you remember from this show, for better or worse
, can be linked to either Joe Raposo or Tony Geiss. Oh, the tantrums that have been stopped... Jeff Moss, Sam Pottle, and Christopher Cerf also deserve credit.
- During the show's first few years, Stevie Wonder performed one of the best versions of "Superstition" ever! Listen for yourself!
- How about the show's theme song?
- Ernie's "Rubber Duckie" (Official Video here) was a huge hit (#10 on the Billboard pop charts!) in 1970.
- Even bigger, the Carpenters cover of "Sing" rose to #3 in 1973.
- Ray Charles' cover of "Bein' Green" (recorded for his 1975 album Renaissance and later featured on The Cosby Show) is as awesome as it is gorgeously uplifting. He performed his version on the Street in 1989.
- The wonderful closing credits music that used to accompany Friday episodes, complete with Toots Thielemans' mellow, bluesy harmonica rendition of the theme and the unforgettable "Funky Chimes" music. Then there's the Season 30 credits.
- "Pinball Number Count". Fun Fact: Yes, that is The Pointer Sisters singing it. "1-2-3 4-5 6-7-8 9-10 11-12!"
- "The Word is 'No'", featuring a music video produced by noted music video producer Jim Blashfield.
- Happy to Be Me. Sure, it dates itself, but that bass line is sick.
- Philip Glass' "Geometry of Circles" music. All four clips are pure minimalist goodness, and while they are all based around the same framework, they each play out quite differently to keep things interesting.
- Sesame Street Creature Feature: The Marmoset. Besides the truly groovy spoken-word performance by Joe Raposo, contains the slyly subversive lines "Are there things to share, when you're a marmoset? / And do you really care, when you're a marmoset..."
- Another so-oddball-it's-awesome Creature Feature: Props to Christopher Cerf for creating the best (and possibly only) song about how awesome manatees are.
- Another Sesame Street Creature Feature segment: The Tiger. Composed by Joe Raposo and sung by Northern Calloway (who played David on the show). Includes a spoken ending line: "You are such a magnificent animal, and I am really a nice person. And you wouldn't do anything funny, would you? Oh boy!"
- The relentlessly upbeat Creature Feature intro deserves a mention of its own. "Birds in the sky! Beasts on the land! Fish in the sea and bugs in your hand!"
- Although a lot of people get on Cookie Monster's case for eating fruits and vegetables in addition to cookies, they don't seem to remember that Cookie has promoted healthy eating as far back as 1987. Back then, however, he rapped about it. Awesomely.
- The Alone Song, simply because sometimes people do want to be alone, and there's nothing wrong with it.
- In 2015, the show's 1995 Greatest Hits Album Platinum All-Time Favorites was inducted in the National Recording Registry, quite possibly the highest honor any recording can receive, for being "historically, culturally and aesthetically important." You don't get more awesome than that!
- Awesome or not, pretty sure there hasn't been any Sesame Street song quite as bizarre (or funny) as "Do De Rubber Duck".
- Bet you never thought Kermit could have a better anthem than "Bein' Green," right? Sam Pottle begs to differ.
- Outdoors treats the episode's guest star with respect. It's a parody of the song "I'm Yours" by Jason Mraz. Guess who they got to sing it.
- Never before has a set of hardware tools made you want to get up and dance so badly.
- Worm Soliloquy is one huge parody of the song "Soliloquy" from Carousel, with a sample of "You'll Never Walk Alone" thrown in. John Raitt, who originated the role of Billy Bigelow in the Broadway version of Carousel, the character who sings "Soliloquy", even sings this version. Now that's a dedicated Shout-Out!
- The stop motion animated inserts of the 1970s and early 1980s featured some truly awesome synthesiser music. Among others:
- Never has a kerosene oil lamp been so awesome, the pieces filing out of the box to a drumbeat before the synth kicks in to add just the right sense of ceremony to the lamp's assembly. It takes a haunting yet delightful turn once the lamp has assembled, the wick is lit, and the studio lights are dimmed so that we can only see by the light from the lamp.
- Al Jarnow's 1980 short film "Architecture", which re-creates various architectural styles from antiquity to the present day using coloured building blocks, is accompanied by a terrific score by Tom Perri, who mentioned in YouTube comments that he and his team had to wire the ARP 2600 synth with which they were working in ways that had never been done before to bring the sounds in Perri's head to life. And it complements the animation beautifully. The music for the transition from the stone circle to the Greco-Roman temple in particular sounds like the triumphant homecoming of a conquering hero or heroine.