Tuesday, February 10, 2009

More Hot (Schoolhouse) Rocks

Since we're on the subject of Schoolhouse Rock, I wanted to give a shout-out to someone who was instrumental in their creation and is, fortunately, still among us. I'm talking about the great Jack Sheldon.

Sheldon gained a modicum of fame as a jazz trumpeter, but, like Blossom Dearie, he's remembered by my generation as one of the voices of Schoolhouse Rock. In fact, he voiced the consensus Schoolhouse Rock favorite, "Conjunction Junction".

I likes me the CJ, and the adjectives song that Ms. Dearie sang is also on my Top 5 list. But my all-time favorite is below, a dizzyingly hilarious number about pronouns called "Rufus Xavier Sarsparilla". The lyric, music and animation are fantastic. And Sheldon's vocal is utterly priceless, particularly the spoken-word interlude on the city bus, which makes me laugh every time.

Thank you, pronouns! And thank you, Jack.


Kizz said...

I think of you almost every time I hear Rufus Xavier Sarsparilla. Not because I knew you loved it, just because. I feel like a goodly amount of how you were formed musically has to do with Schoolhouse Rock. And Sesame Street.

MAB said...

Yep. They got to me first. In more ways than one.

Mrs. Chili said...

I don't even have to click "play;" I know ALL those songs. ("WHAT made that horrible noise and WHICH one of 'em's gettin' off FIRST?!"

MAB said...

See, I chuckled just reading that line. The way Jack punches the pronouns in the sentences and blurts everything out in that Barney-Frank-meets-Hattie-McDaniel I've-got-two-overripe-tomatoes-stuffed-in-my-cheeks rumble is just perfect. The line "WHO let that rhinoceros on the bus?" is funny enough on its own, but Jack's reading of it and the subsequent lines? Awesome.