The Top Ten Sesame Street Songs Not on Any Album: Part II
Michael Wermuth, Jr. - My first published contribution to The Muppet Mindset was a list of the top ten Sesame Street songs that have never been released on any albums. It’s been a year and we still haven’t gotten any new Sesame Street albums (compiling three classic albums on multi-disc sets don’t count as “new”), and therefore my list didn’t have any impact in decision-making from Sesame Workshop or Koch Records. But that won’t stop me from making a list of the SECOND top ten Sesame Street songs not officially available in audio format. Last time I avoided songs recorded after 1997, but I am going to list some post-1997 songs this time around.
A cover of a traditional public domain song, “There’s a Hole in the Bucket” concerns a hillbilly couple, Henry (performed by Jim Henson) and Liza (voiced by Rita Moreno), in which Henry is about to get some water, but finds that there’s a hole in his bucket. Liza tells him to fix the hole, which leads Henry to point out a variety of other issues, asking Liza what he should do next. But as the title says, “There’s a Hole in the Bucket.” “There’s a Hole in the Bucket” was a “holy grail” among fans of Sesame Street. For years it hadn’t been broadcast, and none of the fans had a copy of the segment. In 2008 the sketch was added at sesamestreet.org.
Kermit sings a song about things that are alive while sitting on a hill. He sings about how if "it eats, or breathes, or grows" it's alive. He is soon joined by a variety of different types of Muppets, including a dog, an Anything Muppet boy, Elmo, and others--all of whom are alive.
In this song, Grover encounters Prairie Dawn, who is sad because some kids wouldn’t let her play with them. Grover offers to share some raisins with her, leading him to sing this quiet song about sharing. While not one of Grover’s best, it is still a great song. It was included in the video “Learn to Share.”
7. Don’t Know Y
A parody of “Don’t Know Why” performed by Nora Jones herself. She sings to Elmo about how she and the letter of the day, Y, were supposed to play together, but the Y didn’t show up. While singing, she is oblivious to the fact that the Y is there in the background, until the end, when it apologizes for being late.
6. Things That I Remember
Ernie and Bert sing about the things that they remember. Last year I included this in a list of the top ten Sesame Street inserts not on video, but this would make a good audio release as well. The song is great to listen to. If I didn’t put a pre-1997 limit on my first “Top Ten Sesame Street Songs Not on Albums” list I, would have included this song.
A rap song featuring the rarely-seen Ferlinghetti Donizetti. It’s very catchy. An audio release of it would obviously lose the visuals of Grover breakdancing, but I don’t think that is necessary to enjoy the song. While not on any album releases, the audio does appear in the “Letters” computer game.
This song features Kermit in the swamp, listing swamp-related words that begin with each letter of the alphabet (not too different from Kermit’s other alphabet song, “African Alphabet”). Kermit first sits on a log, then falls backwards into swamp water and repeats his song. While not on any album, it was included in the long-out-of-print VHS “The Alphabet Song.”
One of the highlights of season 41, will.i.am sings this song of pride, joined by many of the current main Sesame Street Muppets (I think Murray is the only notable character absent). It is a fantastic song that really deserves to be available in high-quality audio form.
A song featuring Abby Cadabby, Zoe, and Rosita. They sing about being friends. It’s one of Abby’s best songs, and one of the few that has seen the three main female characters on the show join together to sing.
1. Wheels on my Feet
Okay, I think the visuals of this song are probably more famous to casual fans than the song itself. This is the song where Big Bird appears on roller skates. Big Bird sings about his skating, backed-up in voice-over by some of the adults. I feel like this is just as much a signature Big Bird song as “ABC-DEF-GHI” and “I Just Adore Four”. While never released in audio form, it was included in the video “Big Bird Sings.”
Well, that's my list. I do not plan on posting a "Part III" next year, but then again, I didn't plan on posting a part II when I did the first one. But if the people at Sesame Workshop and Koch Records see this and the original list, these two lists would help with content if we ever get a truly new Sesame Street album from Koch Records.
The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier