Merry Christmas from the "Sesame Street" Family, 1975
December 13, 2014 4:43 PM   Subscribe

Song for an old-fashioned Christmas: "'Twas the night before Christmas on Sesame Street/And the people were sleeping, ‘cause the people were beat/The snow had been falling for most of the day/And it lay over everything, sooty and grey..." -- as performed by Sesame's own David (lyrics) for the 1975 album "Merry Christmas from Sesame Street" (cover; inside artwork; back cover). Please join me (and Bert and Ernie and Oscar and Big Bird and others) in revisiting a holiday classic.

Side One
* "Sesame Street Christmas Overture" - The Sesame Street Festival Orchestra; "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" - The Company
* Medley - The Company: "Deck the Halls" - Herry Monster, Bert, Ernie, Prairie Dawn and the Count; "Jingle Bells" - Herry Monster, David and Gordon; "White Christmas" - Bob, Susan and Mr. Hooper; "Winter Wonderland" - Big Bird
* "I Hate Christmas" (lyrics)- Oscar
* "A Christmas Story" (lyrics) - Mr. Hooper, Ernie, and Bert
* "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" - Bert and Ernie (Bert and Ernie also perform it here)
* "The Twelve Days of Christmas" (lyrics) - Cookie Monster, Hardhead Henry Harris, Prairie Dawn, Grover, Bert, Ernie, Big Bird, Smart Tina, Herry Monster and Snuffle-upagus
Side Two
* Medley - The Company: "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas" - Big Bird; "Silver Bells" - Susan and Gordon; "The Christmas Song" - Bob; "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" - Grover
* "The Night Before Christmas on Sesame Street" - David (video and lyrics above the fold; Northern Calloway, previously)
* "Saludo (aguinaldo)" - Luis and Maria
* "Arrurru" - Luis and Maria
* "(All I Want for Christmas Is) My Two Front Teeth" (lyrics) - The Count
* "A Christmas Pageant" (lyrics) - Prairie Dawn, Ernie, Bert, Herry Monster, Cookie Monster, and Grover
* "Keep Christmas With You (All Through the Year)" (lyrics) - Susan, Gordon, Big Bird, Luis, David, Bob, Prairie Dawn and Ernie
* "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" (reprise) - Big Bird, Mr. Hooper, Oscar and Everyone
Merry Christmas.
posted by MonkeyToes (23 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite
Is it just my iPad? I can't get any of those links to work.
posted by taff at 4:52 PM on December 13, 2014

Says "Video not Available"
posted by CCBC at 5:01 PM on December 13, 2014

Same here.
posted by evilcolonel at 5:03 PM on December 13, 2014

The videos work for me (laptop computer in the US).
posted by filthy light thief at 5:04 PM on December 13, 2014

They must be geoblocked
posted by evilcolonel at 5:52 PM on December 13, 2014

Oh wow. We had this record* growing up. We played it incessantly each December, but I haven't heard it for years. Despite that, specific parts are basically burned into my head -- in particular, "I Hate Christmas", the Bert/Ernie/Hooper take on Gift of the Magi, and "All I Want For Christmas".


* Yes, record. No no, I'm totally not old, I swear! *humbug*
posted by tocts at 6:26 PM on December 13, 2014 [4 favorites]

Available as free streaming from Amazon Prime radio in the U.S.--not sure about other countries.

Also on Spotify.

It's perfect, dear Herry, so get out your axe...
posted by Uniformitarianism Now! at 6:32 PM on December 13, 2014

Oh, and if you knew the original, "A Sesame Street Christmas" (also on Spotify) has the opening "Deck the Halls" medley on it, with Northern Calloway's and Will Lee's voices edited out. Otherwise it is the same track, right through the intro to "I hate Christmas."

The "Gift of the Magi," "a Christmas story," and the duets from Luis and Maria have been replaced as well. It breaks my heart that the former two were excised, but I understand. I find it super-obnoxious that they removed the latter two.
posted by Uniformitarianism Now! at 7:14 PM on December 13, 2014 [1 favorite]

I had totally forgotten about this album. Thanks for posting.
posted by 724A at 7:16 PM on December 13, 2014 [1 favorite]

Can't watch the links but man, that Northern Calloway previously link is something else entirely.
posted by bonobothegreat at 10:08 PM on December 13, 2014

Sesame Street was when I used to wake up first, run downstairs in my cowboy pajamas, pull the knob that started the TV and twist the dial [which had 13 channels - only 4 of which worked - CBS, NBC, ABC and PBS and a U for the secondary dial but that only worked when the weather was weird] [pic] to find Sesame street where I would sit a foot from the screen. I loved waking up then.

Sesame Street, and Captain Kangaroo were the best things ever. They were my friends.

J.P Patches [Seattle derail]: (full name: Julius Pierpont Patches broadcasting from and as Mayor of the City Dump with his friends Ketchikan the Animal Man, Boris S. Wort (the "second meanest man in the world") Tikey Turkey (a rubber chicken), Grandpa Tick Tock (a grandfather clock with an elderly face where the pendulum would be), The Swami of Pastrami, Ggoorrsstt the Friendly Frpl (a one-eyed brown shag carpet), Miss Smith (a motorcycle riding delivery woman who told mostly awful jokes), J.P.'s evil counterpart P. J. Scratches (per official site I.M. Rags), and J.P.'s girlfriend, Gertrude.
/[seattle derail]
posted by vapidave at 10:10 PM on December 13, 2014 [1 favorite]

My family puts this recording on every year when we decorate the house. It's become such a tradition that we actually measure the time from start to completion in "Sesame Street Christmases". Since the time my brother and myself became adults, we have consistently been able to go from zero to full Christmas in less than one playthrough.

Shhshhsh okay everybody here... laaaaaaa.. hmmmm...
posted by pmb at 10:32 PM on December 13, 2014

This video is not available.
Sorry about that.

I'm in Japan, which may be the reason, but there's not the usual message about being outside the U.S. Is anyone able to see these?
posted by zardoz at 11:46 PM on December 13, 2014

I'm 35 years old and my parents still play this record every december!
posted by sudasana at 2:19 AM on December 14, 2014 [1 favorite]

I get the same error zardoz - AU here.
posted by geek anachronism at 2:34 AM on December 14, 2014

* Yes, record. No no, I'm totally not old, I swear! *humbug*

We had the vinyl record - possibly still do somewhere - and I'm totally old. (Although, still younger than the album).

I was going to buy the CD, but when I realized that they had replaced Mr Hooper's gift of the Maji story, I didn't. Found scratchy tracks online.
posted by jb at 8:06 AM on December 14, 2014

+1 links don't work (Canada)

I thought this must be the record I had, but actually that was Christmas Eve on Sesame Street, the soundtrack to the special of the same name, with "True Blue Miracle" and everything.
posted by Sys Rq at 12:18 PM on December 14, 2014 [1 favorite]

I think the secret to why people can't see the videos lies in this line in the description, "Auto-generated by YouTube." That, plus the name of the uploader, "Various Artists - Topic," makes me suspect these are part of YouTube's new focus on delivering music.

That said, these are great. Thanks, MonkeyToes.
posted by ob1quixote at 12:34 PM on December 14, 2014

In Canada but the links don't need to work because my family has had this on vinyl forever and it's in the Christmas rotation (along with the equally great John Denver and the Muppets Christmas). "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" is my probably my favorite Christmas tune, but I lean towards the original version (darkness and all). Somehow Ernie's uses the updated lyrics without sounding cloying like so many of the actual people who sing it do.
posted by tarnish at 6:00 PM on December 14, 2014

Wonderful, thank you.

I posted YouTube links to the 1978 Sesame Street TV Christmas special here a few years ago, and looks like links still work. Thought this crowd would appreciate it.
posted by Miko at 8:38 PM on December 14, 2014

Oh wow. We had this record* growing up.

Ahem. WELL! I just listened that record on ye olde record player this weekend! And it has stood the test of time. It is so delightful. I still tear up every time I hear the Gift of the Magi story... I am very upset to hear that has been removed from more recent versions? Blasphemy! Though I am still outraged that someone removed one of the best jokes from "A Muppet Family Christmas" (something about pork and Miss Piggy) when it was released on video. I remember feeling panicked as a child (yes, this is what I thought about as a child) when I realized that my children wouldn't be able to watch the Muppet Show on TV. Then DVD re-releases and Youtube made this anxiety seem needless, but the more I hear about "editing" the originals, the more I weep for the youth of today! (Oh, and get off my lawn, while we're at it.)

Though while we're on the subject of obsolete (or not to obsolete) technology, here's a sad story. In the later 90s my brother gave me a VHS copy of Christmas Eve on Sesame Street, since I loved it so much and since it was so hard to find on TV any more. Would you believe that the first time we played it the tape unraveled? Tragically, we went back to exchange it at the store and they had no more copies. To this day, I am still upset by this. (Even though I don't have a VCR anyway....)
posted by Mrs. Rattery at 6:04 AM on December 15, 2014

I posted the tracks of this album, probably the scratchy recordings mentioned above, a number of years ago. Some people just stumbled across it while searching and then it got linked in some Amazon reviews of the newer album. I'm amazed that every Christmas since, I've gotten a note from someone about how much they loved this album and how I've helped them re-create happy childhood Christmas memories. So if any of you are unable to view the links or stream it, here you go (sorry Sesame Workshop).
posted by stefnet at 5:18 AM on December 21, 2014 [3 favorites]

stefnet - yes, your site was my source several years ago. And thank you again this year: my mp3s had become corrupted, but I was able to go and play your files from the site for my family. It made my Christmas evening.
posted by jb at 6:56 PM on December 25, 2014 [1 favorite]

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