Friday, November 13, 2009

Emmet Otters Jug Band

from 1977 to 1992, until my Mother died, every Christmas we'd watch Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas. We especially loved Ma Otter, when she sang her little lips just quivered, so precious. There have been some years since 1992 that I haven't been emotionally able to sit and watch it by myself, too many memories, but now although I do but I have to work my way up to it. My maternal grandmother handmade stuffed animals clothed with outfits like these, which she gave me and other grandchildren many of them. I'm sure that Grandma's stuffed animals are the reason I have such a strong love for real animals today.

In 1977, Muppet creator Jim Henson produced a one-hour television show, Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas which tells of Emmet Otter and his Ma, a widow who scrapes by on the small amount of money she gets from doing laundry and that Emmet gets from doing odd jobs around their home of Frogtown Hollow. As Christmas approaches, they hear of a talent contest in the nearby town of Waterville, and separately decide to enter to buy nice presents for each other -- a nice guitar for Emmet, or a piano for Ma. However, in a twist on The Gift of the Magi, they must sacrifice each other's livelihood for the talent contest -- Ma hocks Emmet's tools for dress fabric, while Emmet turns Ma's washtub into a washtub bass for a jug band.

Emmet and Ma each do an excellent job (despite Emmet's jug band having to frantically change songs after another contestant performs their song, Bar-b-que), only to be defeated at the last minute by a rock and roll band called The Nightmare, which comprises a hoodlum gang from the fairly distant town of River Bottom. However, as Ma and Emmet's jug band sing a song together on the way home (more accurately, both of their talent show songs together after Ma realized they fit together), they are overheard by Doc Bullfrog, owner of a local restaurant, who hires them to sing for his customers, thus granting them the bigger prize.


Anonymous said...

I'd never even heard of this before. I'll have to get Ricky to hook up the speakers so I can listen.

What a touching memory of time that you had with your mom. Isn't it amazing how much the little things really matter?

Lucy and Ethel said...

I had forgotten about this! I loved it :)

Thanks for the memories -


Ruralrose said...

am in tears, thank you so much, this brings back special moments for me as well, peace for all

Melodie said...

Here's a statement I never would have thought I would've said.Those Otter puppets sang a beautiful song!I don't remember this movie which is strange because anything Jim Henson did back then was a treat for kids and not to be missed.You are truly blessed to have such good memories of your mother.

The Incredible Shrinking Family said...

It was one of the favorites in this house as well. I think I need to find a copy of it on DVD

Anonymous said...

Joanna, I could barely make it through the video without tears myself.

Life is so short, memories are precious.

Alix said...

I remember that!!! Wow!

Otters are the most adorable creatures on earth. We had one in our lake that used to come by and flirt with my duck LuLu. I have video of it doing the booty dance in front of her and when she paid it no mind, the poor scorned otter slinked back into the water with his advances unrequited. It was a sad thing to witness.

The Jug Band Christmas, on the other hand, is more than delightful. Thanks for sharing the memory with us. Adorable!

Mom L said...

Thank you! I haven't thought of that in many, many years - seeing this was a real treat.

Nancy in Iowa

thecrazysheeplady said...

I'd never seen that...and I'm a huge Muppet fan. Thanks so much for sharing. Not only the video, but your story too.

Melodie said...

We got our first batch of turkeys from McMurry Hatchery.Everything we have gotten from them has been good so far.
I can talk turkey all day too!From the first moment I read about these birds I have been in love with them.

Anonymous said...

I hadn't seen Emmet Otter Jug Band before but I love the video.
I know my grandkids would live it too.

On the aprons, yes I am putting a pocket on the front near the bottom.

Have a great Sunday.