Muppet Hits

Louise Gold starred as one of the Muppet Performers

Catalogue number: (CD - US Pressing) 74860 30021-2, (CD - UK Pressing) 74321 14480-2, (Cassette - US Pressing) 74860 30021-4, (Cassette - UK Pressing) 74321 14480-4

 

Cast

The Players:

 Jim Henson (as: Kermit The Frog, Dr Teeth, Rowlf, The Swedish Chef, Waldorf, The Newsman, Captain Link Hogtrob, Mahna Mahna, and other assorted characters)

Frank Oz (as: Fozzie Bear, Miss Piggy, Animal, Sam The Eagle, Marvin Suggs, and other assorted characters)

Jerry Nelson (as: Floyd, Camilla The Chicken, Robin The Frog, Crazy Harry, Uncle Deadly, Dr Strangepork, and other assorted characters)

Richard Hunt (as: Scooter, Sweetums, Stadler, Janice, Beaker, Wayne, Mildred, and other assorted characters)

Dave Goelz (as: The Great Gonzo, Zoot, Bunsen Honeydew, Muppy, and other assorted characters)

Louise Gold (as: Zelda Rose, Annie Sue Pig, and other assorted characters)

Eren Ozker (as: Hilda, Wanda, and other assorted characters)

John Lovelady (as various assorted characters)

 

Uncredited:

Kathryn Mullen (as various assorted characters - notably a nurse)

Steve Whitmire (as various assorted characters)

 

Production Team

 Songs originally produced by - Jim Henson

With the help of - Peter Harris

Executive Producer - Robert Kraft

Orchestra conducted by - Jack Parnell

 

Track Listing

1. The Muppet Show Theme - Cast (Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Jerry Nelson, Richard Hunt, and, Dave Goelz (The Big Five))

2. Mahna Mahna - Mahna Mahna, and the Two Snowths (Jim Henson, Frank Oz, and, Richard Hunt)

3. There’s A New Sound - Scooter (Richard Hunt)

4. Coconut - Kermit a nurse, A Witch Doctor, and, another nurse (Jim Henson, Louise Gold, Jerry Nelson, and, Kathryn Mullen)

5. Lady Of Spain - The Amazing Marvin Suggs And His Muppaphone (Frank Oz with Jim Henson, and, Jerry Nelson)

6. The Rhyming Song - Fozzie Bear, Link Hogthrob, Scooter, and, Annie Sue (Frank Oz, Richard Hunt, Jim Henson, and, Louise Gold

7. Upidee - Fozzie Bear, A Blond Pig, Baskerville The Afghan Hound, Another Dog, Miss Mousey, A Goat (Frank Oz, Louise Gold, Jerry Nelson, and possibly Richard Hunt)

8. Simon Smith And The Amazing Dancing Bear - Scooter and Fozzie (Richard Hunt and Frank Oz)

9. Trees - Wayne and Wanda (Richard Hunt and Eren Ozker)

10. I’m Five - Robin (Jerry Nelson)

11. Cuanto Le Gusto - Miss Piggy and The Pigs (Frank Oz, with: Jim Henson, Jerry Nelson, Richard Hunt, Dave Goez, and, Louise Gold)

12. Borneo - Cowboy Jerry and Lou-The-Jugband Lady with the Jugband (Jerry Nelson and Louise Gold, with Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Richard Hunt, and, Dave Goelz)

13. Sax And Violence - Instrumental

14. Mr Bassman - Floyd and Scooter (Jerry Nelson, and, Richard Hunt)

15. Who? - Zelda Rose and Her Singing Owl (Louise Gold, with Jerry Nelson)

16. At The Dance - Scooter, a muppet girl, Male Chicken, Female Chicken, Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, another muppet girl, Animal, a sheep (Richard Hunt, Jerry Nelson, Frank Oz, Jim Henson, and, Louise Gold)

17. Happy Feet - Kermit and Frog chorus (Jim Henson with others out of: Frank Oz, Jerry Nelson, Richard Hunt, and,. Dave Goelz)

18. We Got Us - Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie, Gonzo, and The Cast (Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Dave Goelz, Richard Hunt, Jerry Nelson, and, Louise Gold)

19. Closing Theme - Instrumental

 

If getting the CD, at least, the US pressing is to be preferred to the UK one, because of it having much more informative sleeve notes (which contain the lyrics to all the songs)

It should be noted that:

Track 5, Lady Of Spain, comes from the very first The Muppet Show Album, therefore ‘The Players’ on that track can only consist of a selection of: Jerry Nelson, Richard Hunt, Dave Goelz, Eren Ozker, John Lovelady, and, Jim Henson.

Track 12, Borneo comes from comes from The Muppet Show 2, therefore ‘The Players’ on that track can only consist of a selection of: Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Richard Hunt, and, Dave Goelz, in fact the remainder of the Jugband at that time.

According to various Muppet fans it is thought that:

On Track 7, Upidee, Jerry Nelson voices 5 different characters, namely: Baskerville The Afghan Hound, Another Dog, Miss Mousey, and, A Goat

On Track 16: At The Dance, The girl dancing with Scooter and the Male Chicken are voiced by Jerry Nelson, The female Chicken is voiced by Richard Hunt, and: the Sheep dancing with Animal and the girl dancing with Fozzie are voiced by Louise Gold.

The version of Who? used on this album is the one that was specially recorded for the album The Muppet Show Album 2, with Zelda Rose sung by Louise Gold, rather than the version on the Milton Berle episode of The Muppet Show, where  it was sung by somebody else (an unsuccessful candidate auditioning for a job on the show).

All of the performers featured on this album had worked on The Muppet Show, as did Peter Harris and Jack Parnell.

All the performers featured on this album also feature on: Muppet Hits 2, along with a different version of The Muppet Show Theme.

The Muppet Show Eight: Louise Gold, Dave Goelz, Jim Henson, Richard Hunt, Kathryn Mullen, Jerry Nelson, Frank Oz, and, Steve Whitmire also puppeteered on The Great Muppet Caper and they all sang on The Great Muppet Caper (Soundtrack album), John Denver and The Muppets A Christmas Together, John Denver & The Muppets Merry Christmas 45RPM, Christmas For Kids, John Denver Christmas, Put Some Zing In Your Spring (on which the track The Rhyming Song can also be found), and, Muppet Music Sampler (on which the tracks Mahna Mahna, At The Dance, Fozzie On Skates, and, part of The Rhyming Song can also be found).

The Muppet Show Eight: Louise Gold, Dave Goelz, Jim Henson, Richard Hunt, Kathryn Mullen, Jerry Nelson, Frank Oz, and, Steve Whitmire, under the direction of Peter Harris and the musical direction of Jack Parnell all featured on Muppet Show Music Album from which the tracks: The Rhyming Song, and, The Lime In The Coconut originate. That album included a different version of The Muppet Show Theme.

The Muppet Show Eight (Louise Gold, Dave Goelz, Jim Henson, Richard Hunt, Kathryn Mullen, Jerry Nelson, Frank Oz and Steve Whitmire) all featured on Muppet Music Mix, for which Robert Kraft was also Executive Producer. The same versions of the songs: The Muppet Show Theme, Happy Feet, The Rhyming Song are also on this album.

The Muppet Show Eight (Louise Good, Dave Goelz, Jim Henson, Richard Hunt, Kathryn Mullen, Jerry Nelson, Frank Oz, and, Steve Whitmire) all puppeteered on The Muppets Go To The Movies, which Peter Harris also directed. They also all featured on the documentary Of Muppets And Men.

Louise Gold, Dave Goelz, Jim Henson, Richard Hunt, Jerry Nelson, Frank Oz can also be found on Jim Henson Presents Silly Songs, which Jack Parnell was also involved with the musical direction of. Borneo, The Rhyming Song, There’s A New Sound, Upidee, and Who? are also on this album, along with a version of The Muppet Show Theme. This group can also be heard on For What It’s Worth.

Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Jerry Nelson, Richard Hunt, Dave Goelz and Louise Gold, under the direction of Peter Harris and the musical direction of Jack Parnell can also be heard on The Muppet Show Music Hall and The Muppet Show 2 (from which the tracks: There’s A New Sound, Fozzie’s roller-skating monologue, Cuento Le Gusta, Who?, Borneo, At The Dance, Happy Feet, Upidee, I’m Five, and, We Got Us originate, along with a different version of The Muppet Show Theme).

Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Jerry Nelson, Richard Hunt, Dave Goelz, and, Louise Gold represented The Muppets on The Royal Variety Performance (1977).

Louise Gold, Dave Goelz, Jim Henson, Richard Hunt, John Lovelady, Kathryn Mullen, Jerry Nelson, Frank Oz, and, Steve Whitmire can also be found on  Favorite Songs From Jim Henson’s Muppets. On which the same version of the songs The Muppet Show Theme - in its entirety, The Lime In The Coconut, Mr Bassman, and, Mahna Mahna can also be found

Dave Goelz, Louise Gold, Jim Henson, Richard Hunt, John Lovelady, Kathryn Mullen, Jerry Nelson Frank Oz, Eren Ozker, and, Steve Whitmire can also be heard (though not necessarily credited) on Music Mayhem And More on which the same versions of the songs: The Muppet Show Theme, Mahna Mahna, The Amazing Marvin Suggs and His Muppaphone Play ‘Lady Of Spain’, There’s A New Sound, Trees, Simon Smith And His Amazing Dancing Bear, Happy Feet, and, We Got Us can also be found.

Jerry Nelson and Louise Gold, singing Who, with an introduction by Jim Henson can also be heard on Jerome Kern The First 100 Years (although they are credited simply as ‘The Muppets’, rather than as individuals).

Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Dave Goelz, Steve Whitmire, Louise Gold, and, Kathryn Mullen puppeteered on The Dark Crystal, for which Jerry Nelson did some voice-work.

Dave Goelz, Jim Henson, Kathryn Mullen, Frank Oz, and, Steve Whitmire also puppeteered on Labyrinth.

Louise Gold, Dave Goelz, Jerry Nelson, Frank Oz, and, Steve Whitmire puppeteered on The Muppet Christmas Carol, and can be heard on The Muppet Christmas Carol (Soundtrack album), on which Robert Kraft was also Executive Producer (he also worked on the film).

Louise Gold and Peter Harris also worked on Spitting Image and the album Spit In Your Ear.

Louise Gold, Jerry Nelson, Richard Hunt, and, Frank Oz can also be heard on Born To Add.

Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Jerry Nelson, Richard Hunt, and, Louise Gold can also be heard on Elmo’s Lowdown Hoedown.

Jim Henson, Jerry Nelson, Richard Hunt, Steve Whitmire, Louise Gold, and, Kathryn Mullen appeared in The All Time Get Around Sometimes Play Together Every Other Friday Night Vaudeville Show.

Frank Oz, Jerry Nelson, Dave Goelz, Steve Whitmire, and, Louise Gold went on to puppeteer on Muppet Treasure Island.

Dave Goelz, Steve Whitmire, and, Louise Gold went on to puppeteer on The Animal Show, on which Frank Oz did a guest puppeteering appearance, and Peter Harris was also involved with.

Louise Gold, Jim Henson, Richard Hunt, and, Steve Whitmire puppeteered on Tale Of The Bunny Picnic.

Jerry Nelson, and, Dave Goelz (besides puppeteering on Fraggle Rock itself) did voice-work on the UK Co-Production of Fraggle Rock, on which Louise Gold puppeteered.

Dave Goelz, Louise Gold, Richard Hunt, Kathy Mullen, Jerry Nelson, Frank Oz, and, Steve Whitmire performed at Jim Henson’s Memorial Service (where Richard Hunt, and, Frank Oz again sang Simon Smith And His Amazing Dancing Bear).

Dave Goelz, Louise Gold, Jerry Nelson, and, Steve Whitmire’s recording credits include A Green And Red Christmas.

Louise Gold, and, Richard Hunt had puppeteered on The Ghost Of Faffner Hall.

Jerry Nelson, Dave Goelz, and, Louise Gold puppeteered on The Secret Life Of Toys.

Dave Goelz, Louise Gold, Kathryn Mullen, Jerry Nelson, Frank Oz, and, Steve Whitmire puppeteered together on Sesame Street (in the early 1990s).

Jerry Nelson, Richard Hunt, and, Louise Gold’s recording credits include The Count’s Countdown, however there has been some debate as to whether Louise Gold actually sang on it.

Frank Oz, Jerry Nelson, Dave Goelz, Steve Whitmire, Louise Gold, and, Peter Harris contributed to the documentary I Love The Muppets.

Steve Whitmire probably puppeteered on ITV’s 50 Greatest Shows.

 

Review

by Emma Shane

To my mind this is one of the best compilations from The Muppet Show, as it contains many delightful, and very funny, numbers. It also happens to showcase quite nicely some of the very best of The Muppet Show’s singing talents (namely: Richard Hunt, Jerry Nelson, and Louise Gold). Although there are undoubtedly some numbers I enjoy very much more than others, they are all very listenable, so that although it is nice that with this being on CD one can pick and choose tracks, that is not so vital to ones enjoyment of it. The songs featured on it largely come from the earlier years of The Muppet Show, Seasons I, II and III, hence why Steve Whitmire does not appear to be featured at all, and Kathryn Mullen is only on once without a credit. This also accounts for the appearance of Season I performers Eren Ozker and John Lovelady. I have not actually been able to work out where John Lovelady appears. Eren Ozkar duets Trees with Richard Hunt. However, if her contribution to the song is anything to go by, she was rather lacking the sort of presonce her successor on The Muppet Show possesses.

The majority of tracks on the album come from actual numbers on The Muppet Show. However, two tracks and various bits of linking material were recorded especially for one or other of the Muppet Show albums, usually The Muppet Show 2. The two tracks in question being At The Dance (which is rather obvious on hearing it, as one of the jokes is about dancing on a phonograph record) and Who? a number which Louise Gold never actually sang on The Muppet Show. At The Dance is a very funny way of preserving on record a popular feature on The Muppet Show. The jokes on this track are great fun: Kermit describing the sort of circumstances under which he would dance with Miss Piggy, Male and Female chickens discussing “Peoplepox” as opposed to Chickenpox, and my favourite, Fozzie Bear asking a cute-sounding girl how she likes the jokes on the album. Lasting all of 53 seconds, Louise Gold’s rendering of Jerome Kern’s Who? must be the shortest version of that song on record! Short it maybe, but she does of course sing it very well, and it is a treat to hear this terrific Muppet vocalist have one track on this album almost to herself (there is contribution from Jerry Nelson as the singing owl).

Indeed this album is a good one for anyone who enjoys hearing The Muppet Show’s three top singing talents. All three having their moments in the sun. Richard Hunt has a bizarre solo in There’s A New Sound, he also sings the lead vocal really well on Simon Smith And The Amazing Dancing Bear. Jerry Nelson is at his cute best as Robin The Frog singing I’m Five, he has such a wonderful voice, that he cannot help but sing it well, with feeling, even when trying to portray a character who things its a silly sentimental song (as Robin supposedly did). These three also get to shine in duets. Mr Bassman is an excellent number, primarily because it is sung extremely well by Jerry Nelson and Richard Hunt. I don’t know that I’d have actually liked the number if it had not been so well sung. While one of my favourite tracks on the album is Borneo, which, besides being great fun, is sung by a pair who must surely be one of the greatest singing-double-acts ever to grace the muppets, Jerry Nelson and Louise Gold. Their strong, magnificent voices dominate the number, and make it, well worth hearing.

The trio also give added strength numbers led by other performers. For example, they provide a strong chorus to Frank Oz’s performance of Cuanto Le Gusto. While Louise and Jerry can be very clearly heard on Coconut, a song led by Jim Henson as Kermit. This is another of the high spots on the album. It includes the English muppeteer Louise Gold as a narrator/nurse, singing, for once, in something approaching her normal accent! I think the track also includes backing vocals from Kathryn Mullen, but she is uncredited. Although Jim Henson may not have been quite one of the greatest singers, he did sing nicely with a lot of feeling. On this album he is perhaps at his best as Kermit singing Happy Feet, which is a glorious piece of fun.

This album is simply a whole lot of fun, very much like the muppets. This is characterised by many of the ensemble pieces. Upidee is gloriously silly, and actually says it is a silly song. It is sung quite adequately by Frank Oz and wonderfully bizarrely by Louise Gold, but gets its real tour de force from Jerry Nelson, as about five different characters! The Rhyming Song is a wonderful piece of silly fun. It is not exactly The Rhyming Song, but it is very Muppet, performed by such hopeless hams as: Fozzie Bear and Link Hogthrob, the not-easily fazed Scooter, and the delightful Annie Sue. The latter gets a characteristic last word “Well it wasn’t that bad”, which might (in Annie Sue’s modest kind of way) sum up this album. However, the finale is a stroke of genius. Whoever came up with the brilliant idea of getting the muppets to sing We Got Us, deserves an ovation. The song may have originally been written for Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme to sing in the 1968 musical Golden Rainbow. But I do not think it can ever have been better inhabited than it is by the muppets. All of them perform it well, with real sincerity and enthusiasm, this is hardly surprising because this song is just so much their song. In particular the lines “People may say we are crazy the way we are, that we won’t even discuss,.... we got us”; Which about sum up the wonderfully: funny, anarchic, crazy, eccentric, loveable muppets, and the uniquely talented men and women who puppeteered them, especially on The Muppet Show.

 

Critics Comments

  “This album represents a diverse compilation of favorite songs from the different episodes of “The Muppet Show”. Featured are the talents of several great performers and singing material written by many great songwriters”, SLEEVE NOTES

 

Links about Muppet Hits

 Muppet Wiki’s page for this album: http://muppet.wikia.com/wiki/Muppet_Hits

 

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