Between February 1989 and May 1990, there were three significant deaths in the Sesame Street world. The first was Joe Raposo, a significant musician for Sesame Street and Electric Company. The last was Jim Henson, mourned by Big Bird, remembered by Frank Oz, and celebrated in song by many (from the St. John's Memorial, detailed here). The second person to die in this time period was Northern Calloway, Sesame Street's David. Unlike Joe and Jim, there were no television tribute to Northern's life and career on Sesame Street or Broadway. Instead, David, once a young, cool, urban guy, who was studying to be a lawyer while working at Mr. Hooper's storeand the initial romantic interest of Maria, left the show through a letter, read by Gordon. The story behind David is told below the fold. [more inside]
You've probably all seen or read Dr. Seuss's How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1 2 3). But did you know about its Halloween sequel, Halloween Is Grinch Night? The first Dr. Seuss special to feature music from Joe Raposo, it has finally been released on DVD. Or you can watch it on YouTube (1 2).
In honor of Jim Henson's 75th birthday, let's celebrate bein' green: Kermit. Ray Charles. Kermit and Ray Charles. The Boston Pops. Lena Horne and Kermit. Lena Horne. Oscar the Grouch. Bob McGrath. Audra McDonald. Chuck Findley and the Metropole Orchestra. Shirley Horn. Cibelle. Frank Sinatra. Thurl Ravenscroft. Van Morrison. Sophie Milman. Andrew Bird. Big Bird.
Even if you don't know Joe Raposo's name, you probably have heard his music. Throughout the 1970's and 1980's, Joe was the main composer of songs and incidental music for the children's television shows Sesame Street and The Electric Company. In this role, he wrote some of today's standards while also imprinting his musical stylings on the consciousness of a generation of children worldwide. In the second half of this post, you will find a curation of youtube-links leading to a good chunk of Joe Raposo's oeuvre -- all gems, mostly under two minutes each. Sing along if you know the words! [more inside]