Rock stars and Muppets: Is there any better pairing? Through the course of five prime-time seasons of 'The Muppet Show,' starting in 1976, the show featured plenty of A-list rock stars, many of which this writer remembers watching as a wee lass. Over the years, The Muppets aligned themselves with rockers, even after the show was cancelled. In honor of the release of 'The Muppets Most Wanted,' we've not only chosen the Top 5 Muppets Show Cover Songs, we've selected the five most sensational, inspirational, celebrational, Muppetational instances where the Muppets teamed up with rock stars for your enjoyment:
Ozzy Osbourne Sings 'Born to Be Wild' With Miss Piggy
Ozzy and Miss Piggy? That's a match made in metal and Muppet hell! Forget the frog. Here, Miss Piggy is falling in love with the infamous bat biter. In fact, maybe Ozzy chomped off Kermit's head off in order to win Piggy's affections, so they could croon 'Born to Be Wild' together.
Paul Simon Smashes a "Clarinet" With Gonzo
Blue Muppet Gonzo talks songwriting with Paul Simon, who knows a thing or three about that topic. Gonzo refers to the guitar as a "clarinet," tells Simon "You play, I'll sing" and proceeds to spew lyrics like this: "I'd wash my hair with stinky glue / I'd fry my legs and eat them too / I'd put a spider in my shoe / For you." There are 28 other verses, which Simon declines to hear. He then tells Gonzo he will never play his guitar again unless he plays one of Gonzo's songs. He then smashes the "clarinet." We get the message, but Gonzo did not.
Paul McCartney Gets a "Royal" Assist From Kermit
When Paul McCartney performed 'Hey Jude' at the Golden Jubilee for Queen Elizabeth II in 2002, he got an assist from Black Sabbath and…Kermit the Frog. Kermy is perched behind Sir Paul, singing his face off. Kermit is not British, but hey, he supports the monarchy and one of the country's (and the world's) best songwriters! This is not an actual 'The Muppet Show' appearance but it's awesome so we're counting it!
Elton John and the Muppets Rock 'Bennie and the Jets'
The Muppets criticize the song structure of 'Bennie and the Jets,' not realizing Elton John wrote the song. They caterwaul the melody at the piano, to demonstrate how "bad" it is to the colorfully dressed Elton. "Is this not the worst song you ever heard, Elton?," asks Kermit. "Well, I didn't think so when I wrote it," John replies. Zing! The singer then engages the Muppets in a singalong. Miss Piggy boasts a pink afro, while Kermit and Scooter are behind John, getting their groove on.
Alice Cooper and the Muppets Declare 'School's Out'
Alice Cooper sings (and dances) with a bunch of big, monster-like Muppets to 'School's Out.' He starts out wearing a cap and gown, and interacts fearlessly with the furry creatures. Later, he does a flip and ditches the cap and gown to reveal a red cat suit. It's not nearly as scary as his turn as Dracula, rising out of a coffin, from when he performed 'Welcome to My Nightmare.' on the show. But it was just as cool.