Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas Has Arrived!

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I’m quietly celebrating the holidays with a new addition to my vast Jim Henson library – this is the Record Store Day exclusive limited edition picture disc of the music from Henson’s 1977 television special, Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas. The soundtrack was issued for the very first time for Record Store Day in 2018 and was limited to 2000 copies worldwide. This year a picture disc version was issued in a run of 2,500. Both editions were issued by the soundtrack record label, Varèse Sarabande.

Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas RSD 2019 Picture Disc 12-17-19

All versions of the soundtrack feature 15 tracks from the TV special, a previously unreleased song called “Born in a Trunk” that didn’t make it to air, as well as extended liner notes featuring interviews with the film’s puppet performers, and more.

The film was Jim Henson’s most complex endeavor to date. As Dave Goelz reflected in 2011:

“We built a 55-foot-long river that was about 10 feet wide and went all the way across the stage, and they built a radio-control rowboat for Emmet. It was so lovely and lyrical to see Emmet rowing his mom down the river. The idea that there was life along the river and that it was all interconnected was a great metaphor for people.”

The soundtrack features all of Paul Williams’ music from the special, including the fan-favorite, “Riverbottom Nightmare Band” and the heartwarming, “Where the River Meets the Sea,” the latter of which was featured on the classic John Denver & the Muppets: A Christmas Together LP in 1979.

Though I was too young to have seen the original television broadcast in ’77, I had the great pleasure of seeing Emmet Otter along with The Bells of Fraggle Rock together in the theater when they were featured by Fathom Events on December 16, 2018.

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Now I’ve added the picture disc to my library of 60+ Jim Henson-related LPs. (There’s one more Henson holiday disc I hope to secure, but as it has almost never surfaced on the resale market I’m going to keep it under wraps until one appears or a reissue is released.)

Happy holidays, everyone!

I just met George Clinton

Last night my girlfriend and I saw George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic live in Buffalo.  I brought along the rare limited edition Osmium 180g picture disc which I posted to this blog on June 28th.  You can re-visit the post for details here.

To sum it up, it’s a re-issue of Parliament’s first record, 750 copies were produced in Argentina in 2003, and all quickly disappeared.  The copy I found was in Thessaloniki, Greece and in mint unplayed condition.

Osmium Pic Disc

There were several setbacks looming over us during my mission to get the album signed by the captain of the Mothership.  The weather man had predicted thunderstorms just as George was set to take the stage, potentially raining out the show.  Also, being new to the area, we got lost on our way to the concert.  Good fortune was with me because I jumped out of the car and stopped the only person I could find on the street… who then generously led us right to the show!

The rain never came, and the set was incredible.  During the concert I found three other audience members with albums to get signed.  We teamed up and talked to security, agreeing to meet beside the tour bus after the performance.  It paid off.  After the park quieted down and everyone left, Joe “Foley” McCreary stepped out of the bus and signed my disc.  (He played bass with Miles Davis all through the late 80s and now plays drums for George.)

Joe Foley McCreary Jr autograph
Next out of the bus was Carlos McMurray who gave an amazing performance as Sir Nose D’Voidoffunk.  He signed the disc with a smile.

Carlos Sir Nose McMurray autograph
And just before George hopped into his van he approached me, took the album in his hands, removed his sunglasses to check out what I’d given him, and happily added his autograph.

George Clinton autograph
The challenges of the night weren’t over just yet – the concert was over by 9:30 we wandered aimlessly until 11pm unable to find our car.  We were still disoriented from the confusing journey into the show.  Thankfully, friends came to our rescue and we stopped into a local bar only to find that luck was with us again – the woman who gave us our parking pass was sitting at the bar.  She remembered us and told us right where we parked!  (Honestly, what are the odds of that?!)

It was a fitting end to an exciting night.  Huge thanks to Nacy for the record, which is now my favorite disc for the love and memories attached.




The Gift of Funk

I’m back from my 30th birthday vacation, and it will most certainly be remembered.   I took home a number of LPs, so watch this blog for several posts in the coming week(s).

Osmium, Parliament’s first full length album, was originally released on Invictus Records in 1970.  A mint copy will set you back one or two hundred dollars on eBay.

Parliament - Osmium (front)

Parliament - Osmium (Back)

All reissues have the artist name re-set horizontally instead of vertically.

The original album is highly collectible.  According to popsike.com, 11 copies in varying condition have auctioned this year.

This version, produced by Earmark/Sanctuary & Get Back Records in 2003 is a limited edition 180g picture disc released in Argentina in 2003.  Only 750 copies were pressed, and in the last four years I’ve found one copy for sale.  So when this one surfaced in Thessaloniki, Greece I put it at the top of my birthday wish list.  Thanks to a kind and loving mother in law it’s the latest addition to my PFunk family collection.

Parliament - Osmium (Picture Disc)
Here’s a taste of the soulful funk on this LP.

The next PFunk related disc I’m after is the “I Wanna Testify” RV207 7 inch single that George Clinton released with his doo-wop group, The Parliaments in 1967 (before Osmium was recorded.)

Stay tuned for more later this week!