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Roosevelt Franklin's little brother Baby Ray Franklin sings 'The Skin I'm In' (1,971), a song that talks about how proud he is to look the way he does: "Mostly Roosevelt, you taught me to love three things: Who I am, what I am, and where I am."
Roosevelt Franklin appeared on Sesame Street from 1,970 to 1,975. He was a popular character who addressed concepts such as family, pride, respect, black history, geography and not drinking poison! He attended the Roosevelt Franklin Elementary School and liked to "scat, rhyme and sing the blues".
Matt Robinson, who played the original Gordon character, also created, scripted and performed the voices and songs for Roosevelt Franklin, Baby Ray Franklin and Mobity Mosely among others. Roosevelt's brother Baby Ray Franklin was never actually on the show. He only featured in this single.
The Skin I'm In was released as a single in 1,971 and also featured on the 1,971 Sesame Street album 'The Year of Roosevelt Franklin', later released as 'My Name is Roosevelt Franklin' in 1,974. The album was co-written by Matt Robinson and Joe Raposo.
"Somewhere around four or five," Matt Robinson stated in the book All About Sesame Street, "a black kid is going to learn he's black. He's going to learn that's positive or negative. What I want to project is a positive image."
Sesame Street was first aired in 1,969. It was a ground-breaking children's tv programme as it was the first to be created for a multicultural, bilingual, inner-city audience.
Images on the video are from Sesame Street episodes circa 1,969 to 1,975.