Best of the B List: The Muppet Show

In honor of the new Muppets Movie hitting theaters, we’re re-publishing a classic B List from 2007 featuring the best performances from The Muppet Show.

From 1976 to 1981, The Muppet Show entertained both children and their parents with a humorous blend of skits and physical comedy. Each week Jim Henson’s show would feature a special guest star as the host, and many times these stars were plucked straight from the music industry.

This week’s edition of The B List features 10 must-watch musically themed videos from The Muppet Show that we know you’ll enjoy.  Our list includes great clips featuring Buddy Rich and Animal’s drum duel, Alice Cooper inspiring some scary muppets, Steve Martin and his banjo, Dizzy Gillespie, Paul Simon and more.

1. The Muppet Show had a heady house band called Electric Mayhem. This clip features Electric Mayhem playing Paul Simon’s 50 Ways To Leave Your Lover. My favorite part is Rizzo The Rat’s epic cymbal playing:

2. In this clip from the Italian version of the Muppet Show, Animal challenges drumming legend Buddy Rich to a Drum Duel. Man, Buddy Rich is nasty!

3. Johnny Cash performs Jackson with Miss Piggy and the Muppets:

4. Steve Martin whips out his banjo to play Ramblin’ Guy for the Muppets:

5. Some scary looking Muppets join Alice Cooper for a rendition of School’s Out:

6. Here is a well-done homemade mashup of video footage from Sesame Street and The Muppet Show featuring audio from NWA’s Fuck Tha Police:

7. From 1996 to 1998, The Disney Channel showed an updated version of The Muppet Show called Muppets Tonight. The show wasn’t successful, but did yield a few fun videos such as Kermit singing Dancin’ In The Dark. Gotta love Miss Piggy in the Courtney Cox role:

8. Paul Simon plays a solo rendition of It’s Been A Long Long Day from 1980’s One Trick Pony for an assembled group of Muppets. Check out Janis making the O face, I think she’s more than just a fan:

9. Elton John performs Crocodile Rock. Nice fucking outfit Elton — how did people really think this guy was straight back then?

10. Dizzy Gillespie sits in with Electric Mayhem for a hot rendition of St. Louis Blues:

Did I miss any kickass Muppet Show musical performances? Did you like these?

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7 Responses

  1. Who are your influences?

    – Yer man Animal from The Muppets

    That’s from The Commitments, a great flick. And Animal is indeed nasty behind the kit.

  2. Buddy Rich was a monster, but you have to give serious props to Ronnie Verrell, the man behind Animal’s playing.

  3. For Buddy Rich there’s also a clip where he starts drumming in the dressing room and works his way down the stairs, on the floors, on the railing, maybe on Beeker’s head and on to the stage.

    I also love the Harry Belafonte song that he did
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t2TZhruT-Xs

    apparently this was the song he played at Jim Henson’s funeral as well.

    Not with a special guest star, but one of the most memorable songs to come out the Muppet Show.
    Lime in the Coconut
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w7P59YBoz_o

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