Friday, July 15, 2011

Stevie Wonder on Sesame Street

by Dick Mac

The early 1970s were a boom time for both Stevie Wonder and Sesame Street.

Wonder had matured from a child star at Motown to one of the world's most formidable singers, songwriters, producers, and musicians.

Ernie, Bert, Kermit, Big Bird and the rest of Jim Henson's menagerie catapulted from a set depicting a Brooklyn city block to universal super stardom.

Sesame Street was after my time. I was in the Eighth Grade when it debuted, and my sister, five years junior, was a fan. We had the Sesame Street LP and some Sesame Street books; but it was not in my personal rotation. I preferred Speed Racer at the time.

To this day, amazing performances take place on the set of Sesame Street. Johnny Cash, Cab Calloway, Norah Jones, Ray Charles, The Four Tops, Billie Joel, Tony Bennett, Jose Feliciano, Donny Osmond, B.B. King, Diana Ross, Lou Rawls, Paul Simon, and scores (hundreds?) of other singers and stars have appeared to sing or chat with the muppets.

I don't known when the first pop star appeared on Sesame Street, but it became a tradition and some appearances are legendary. This is one.

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