Songs from
Released 1981
Format LP
Label Kids' Records
Cat no. KRL-1001

Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch: Camping in Canada is a Sesame Street album which was released only in Canada in 1981 -- a year before Big Bird went to Camp Echo Rock on the show.

The story follows Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch who have been invited by their friend Louise to attend a summer camp in Toronto, Canada. Big Bird befriends a homesick girl named Debbie along the way.

Track listing

Side One

  1. Aerodynamic: Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch are traveling on a plane to a summer camp in Canada. After the captain gives a message welcoming them aboard the flight in English and French, Big Bird asks his friend Louise how an airplane can fly without flapping its wings. She explains by singing "Aerodynamic", along with the Kids. During the song, she, Big Bird and Oscar point out the various landmarks between Sesame Street and Toronto, such as the ocean, the Statue of Liberty and Niagara Falls. After about an hour, the plane lands.
  2. Holiday in Canada: As Big Bird and Oscar arrive at summer camp, they talk to Louise and Mike, two counselors at the camp. As they get on the bus, Big Bird meets a girl named Debbie, who doesn't like to be away from home. Louise and Mike start to sing "Holiday in Canada", a song about what life will be like at camp. Big Bird starts to join in, and so does Debbie, although she sings about being far away from home and her friends.
  3. Busy Bee: "Busy Bee" is an activity song that's sung at Big Bird's summer camp by the Kids. First you put your hands together and clap, then you put your hips together and clap. Next, you put your feet together and stomp, then you put your arms together and clap.
  4. Going on a Picnic: "Going on a Picnic" is a song sung at Big Bird's summer camp by the Kids and their counselors as they prepare for a picnic. The lyrics are in a call-and-response format, where the adults ask the kids if they brought a certain kind of food, and the kids answer back that they did. By the end of the song, they have peanut butter, bananas, apple juice, oranges, cookies, muffins, popcorn, and hot chocolate.
  5. Soup Song: Big Bird is talking to his friend Louise at summer camp, and she tells him that she comes from Quebec, and she speaks French. Big Bird mentions his friends on Sesame Street who speak Spanish, but French sounds a lot different. Louise helps Big Bird learn some new French phrases by singing the "Soup Song", and teaches him the French names for tomato soup, chicken soup, vegetable soup, and split pea soup.
  6. Nature's Family: "Nature's Family" is a song sung by Big Bird, Oscar the Grouch, and the Kids at Big Bird's summer camp, about how we're all connected to nature. Big Bird admires the beauty of lakes and trees and flowers and rainbows, and the sound of birds and bees. Then Oscar sings about his love for slugs, bugs, lizards, and the mixture of mud and snow after a blizzard.
  7. Pitch In and Help: At Big Bird's summer camp, Mike asks Oscar the Grouch if he wants to join the "cleanup band". Oscar tells him that he'd rather be messy and sloppy. So Mike and the Kids sing "Pitch In and Help", a song about things people do at camp to keep things clean and neat. They sweep the floor, set the table, make their beds, and wash the dishes. When Oscar hears that they also take out the trash, he suggests that they take it to his cabin. Mike reminds him that they're supposed to clean their cabins instead.
  8. What Do You Do on a Rainy Day: Big Bird and his friends at summer camp are on a picnic, when it starts raining. As they head over to the lodge, they sing "What Do You Do on a Rainy Day". You can watch it rain, stay in bed, play dressup and pretend you're somebody else, read a book, take out some pots and pans and pretend to cook, or march around with a drum. Oscar, however, would rather be outside splashing around in the puddles.
  9. Three Bears: (needs description)
  10. Creatures in the Pond: It's nighttime, and Big Bird is trying to find his way back to his cabin at summer camp. It's dark, and he's getting scared because he can't see, and the noises all around him are scary. Suddenly, he hears what sounds like a frog, followed by a voice singing a song about the "Creatures in the Pond". But he finds out it's only Oscar, who was saying goodnight to the slugs. Then Mike, a camp counselor, comes by. Big Bird tells him that he was afraid that he was lost. Mike shows him that they're right by his cabin, so he doesn't have to be afraid.
  11. Sleeping Under the Stars Big Bird is getting ready to go to sleep for the first time at summer camp. His friend Debbie is afraid to go to sleep, because it's so dark. Their counselor Louise tells her to look up at the stars. Then Louise sings "Sleeping Under the Stars", a lullaby about how looking at the stars can make you feel safe.

Side Two

  1. J'ai Sommeil: At summer camp, Big Bird tries to get his counselor Louise to get up. She starts to sing "J'ai Sommeil" (I'm Sleepy), about how she's still sleepy and wants to stay in bed. Pretty soon the Kids join her song, and plead to stay in bed for at least another half hour.
  2. Start the Day Off Right: "Start the Day Off Right" is a Latin-style song performed by Mike, who is a counselor at Big Bird's summer camp. He sings about the things you should always do to get a good start in the morning, beginning with stretching your arms and touching your toes. Then you should brush your teeth, wash your face, and have a good breakfast.
  3. Ham and Eggs is a traditional American folk song. It's sung by the Kids at Big Bird's summer camp as they have breakfast. The lyrics talk about how the kids want their ham (fried nice and brown), eggs (fried upside down), porridge (hot and steamy), and milk (cold and creamy).
  4. We're Having a Wonderful Time: "We're Having a Wonderful Time" is a song sung by Big Bird, Oscar the Grouch, and the Kids as they write letters home from summer camp. At first, the kids can only think of bad things that have happened to them, like getting stung by a bee, and losing their coats, and getting a cold, and getting a skinned knee. But their counselor Louise wants them to write that they're having a wonderful time instead. Then she asks Oscar if he remembers his first day at camp. He replies that he got covered in mud from a flood that happened that day. But he thought it was wonderful. Then Big Bird recalls all the things he experienced in the outdoors, like the flowers, trees, water, and the summer breeze. So he's having a wonderful time, too, and everybody joins him on the final chorus.
  5. Homesick: Big Bird is talking to his friend Debbie at summer camp. He comments that she doesn't look like she's having a good time. She sings "Homesick", about all the things she misses at home. Even though she's done a lot of things at camp, like roasting marshmallows over a campfire, and watching the fireflies, and hearing the birds sing, she misses her bed, her favorite chair, her goldfish, and eating Sunday dinner.
  6. I've Got the Lonesome, Wanna Be Back on Sesame Street, Blues: "I've Got the Lonesome, Wanna Be Back on Sesame Street, Blues" is a duet performed by Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch at summer camp, as they sing about all the things they miss back home on Sesame Street. Oscar misses his stash of banana peels, nonreturnable bottles and worn out shoes. Big Bird misses his nest, the bus, Mr. Hooper, Susan, Gordon, and Mr. Snuffleupagus. They like Canada, but they miss the city, because it's home.
  7. Sad, Mad, Glad: Big Bird and the Kids are feeling sad at summer camp, because they're homesick. So Louise their counselor sings "Sad, Mad, Glad", and they join in. She sings that whenever they feel sad and lonely, or angry, they shouldn't cry or stomp their feet on the ground. They'll feel better if they sing. And when they're feeling happy, they can sing and dance then, too.
  8. The Treasure Hunt: In the song "The Treasure Hunt", Big Bird and the Kids are going on a treasure hunt at summer camp. Their counselor Louise is their guide, and clues are scattered all over the camp on pieces of paper. When Big Bird reads the first clue, he thinks it says "poison", but Louise tells him it says "poisson", which is French for "fish", so they go to the lake. Big Bird thinks the next clue says "liver", but Louise says that it's "livre", which means "book". So they go to the office, which has a little library in it. The next clue says "pain", so Big Bird thinks they should go to the hospital. But Louise tells him that it's pronounced "pan", which means "bread", so they go to the kitchen. They don't find any more clues, but Mike, another counselor, gives them some bread he just baked. Big Bird finds a piece of paper in his piece of bread, and after he tries to read the French phrase on it, he asks Mike for help. Mike reads it, and it says, "Voici le trésor!", which means, "Here is the treasure!" Louise says that they also have some "beurre d'arachide", or peanut butter.
  9. Campfire: "Campfire" is a rhythmic action song performed by the Kids at Big Bird's summer camp, as they build a campfire to cook hot dogs. Different groups of kids chant various words and phrases simultaneously as some African-sounding percussion plays in the background. First, as they find the material for the fire, they chant "firewood, firewood", "stack the kindling", and "crumpling paper". This gradually changes to "hot dogs", "on a stick", "toast the bun", "mustard, relish", and "juicy, juicy".
  10. I Can Do It: At Big Bird's summer camp, his friend Debbie is telling jokes around the campfire, and having a good time with everybody. Their counselor Vicki remarks that Debbie was really shy when she first got to camp, but now she's a lot more confident. Debbie sings "I Can Do It", a song about all of the things that she can do by herself. She can wash her face, comb her hair, butter her bread, make her bed, dress herself, wash her cup, tie her shoes, score a goal in soccer, draw a picture, write her name, and write a letter to her parents. And even though she can do all these things, she's still learning new things. This year at camp, she started learning to float, and when she comes back next year, she'll learn how to use a rowboat.
  11. Need a Friend: Summer camp is almost over for Big Bird and the other campers, and his friend Debbie wants to keep in touch with her new friend Vicki. Debbie sings "Need a Friend", a song about how no matter what's doing, whether it's riding a pony, or swimming in the river, singing a song, playing a game, or even making a sandwich, she'll want a friend to be with her, too. And if either of them ever feel sad or lonely, or want to tell secrets, they can be there for each other.
  12. Happy Place: Summer camp is over, and it's time for Big Bird, Oscar the Grouch, and all of the other campers to go home. Big Bird asks if he can come visit his counselor Louise in Quebec and learn some French. She says that he would be welcome. Then Big Bird remarks that when he first got to camp, he missed his home on Sesame Street. But now that he's going home, he'll miss the camp. (Oscar comments that he's only going to miss the swamp and the slugs.) Big Bird is going to miss everybody and everything about camp so much, he wonders if he'll ever be happy again. Mike, another counselor, sings "Happy Place", a song that talks about how everybody has special places and things that they can think about whenever they feel sad. It can be the outdoors, somebody they love, a flower, a dance, a bird, or a song. Once the song fades, Oscar has the last word as the needle reaches the very end of the record: "Everything comes to an end, but a frankfurter has two!"




  • The cover art is by Sesame storybook illustrator Tom Cooke.
  • There is extra material in the grooves between the end of the record and the label. As the needle travels between the last song and the edge of the label, Oscar sings:

"Everything comes to an end,
Everything comes to an end,
But a frankfurter has two."

The phrase "has two" repeats on the very last groove until the listener takes the needle off of the record. It is not known if the cassette has this material.

Other releases

See also

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