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Surprise! (song)

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Written by Jeff Moss
Date 1970
Publisher Festival Attractions, Inc.
EKA Episode 0218

"Surprise!" is a Sesame Street song originally sung by a band of Anything Muppet hippies that would evolve into Little Jerry and the Monotones. It talks about the good and bad parts of surprises, and how people respond to them.

Throughout the song, various characters appear during the sketch in cutaways demonstrating surprises, including: Oscar surprising Susan with a snake in a can; Herbert Birdsfoot in a room surprised by Roosevelt Franklin, Roosevelt Franklin's Mother, Herry, Cookie Monster, Prairie Dawn, and Grover; and Herry sneaking up on Bert. After the many clips of various surprises, the back-up singers eventually give the lead singer their own surprise for him at the end of the song.

The song was also performed on two occasions in street scenes: in one where Little Jerry visits the street (, and a abridged version in an episode when Elmo takes a sick Little Jerry's place (


1980s surprise

The Monotones' street performance in a late 80's episode.

  • In the original televised version, the nameless group of Anything Muppet hippies is a precursor to Little Jerry and the Monotones; as evident that in the song Jerry Nelson sings lead, with Jeff Moss (along with Joe Raposo and Caroll Spinney) supplying backing vocals. Some of their designs and wardrobe echo that of members of the group (For instance, the lead singer sports a dashiki that became a part of Little Jerry's apparel, and two of the back-ups largely resemble Big Jeffy and the Pumpkin Monotone). Regardless, Little Jerry and the Monotones are credited with the song on a 1983 album release. Additionally, the lead singer appeared with the actual group in a sketch with Grover displaying the word "Walk". He's performed in that sketch by Caroll Spinney.



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