Sesame Street Ska

Another quickie post. Back when I was first getting into ska in the early 1990s, the band I first was obsessed with was the Scofflaws, who not only made great recordings but put on a great live show. It wasn’t just that they performed well, but that they entertained. Soon after I started trying to find out about any and every ska band out there, someone (maybe my friend Rod?) gave me a tape of a Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra recording. It was on a cassette tape with no details other than the band’s name and it was fantastic… and the most hilarious part was the rendition they did of the Sesame Street theme, and they start chanting “How… To… Get… To… Sesame Street!”

Years later, I was able to get the actual CD (only available in Japan) that had the song (again, I don’t remember how…). I’ve also bought a few other CDs by the band over the years, but none really matched up to this one album. Just a couple years ago, 20 years after the band was first founded, they made their very first tour of the US and I actually got to go see them (and drag the wife along) in San Francisco. To be honest, I almost didn’t go. It was midweek, and since so many of their other albums just didn’t excite me, I wasn’t sure if it was worth it. That one album, however, was fantastic. But, man, was I glad I went. It was the first band I’d seen in a long time that was Scofflaws-like in putting on a show. It made the whole thing worthwhile.

Anyway, the excellent ska blog Music is Our Occupation today pointed to a neat little video of Skapara (what the band is commonly called) from back in 1991 where they’re performing Baby Elephant Walk and Sesame Street (probably soon after that album came out):

Man. There certainly weren’t crowds that big at ska shows in 1991 in the US.

One Comment

audrissy  on December 30th, 2008

so there was that one time we went to a scofflaws show at the haunt (out of many) and afterwards we sort of hung out with some of the band dudes because we were cool and hooked up like that. and the guy who played the bass kept asking me to get some drinks with him and i felt all flattered that he wanted to go out with me. you were kind enough to not point out that he was just super wasted and probably hits on any female, and so for a whole week i felt really special that the bass player of the scofflaws ‘liked me.’ good times. fortunately or unfortunately, i now know better.

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