Within six months of Sesame Street’s premiere, Jim was in the studio recording the first of what would be dozens of record albums featuring songs from the show. Tip-toeing into the realm of consumer products, the show’s producers decided that books and records seemed like a safe choice and easy to defend as educational tools. Joe Raposo and Jeff Moss had already written an array of memorable songs that everyone was eager to share off screen. Along with the theme song, young listeners could sing along to what would become some of the show’s best known tunes like “Somebody Come and Play,” “I Love Trash,” “Bein’ Green,” and “The People In Your Neighborhood.” Less familiar songs like “Everybody Wash” and “Rub your Tummy” filled out the album, and the final track “Rubber Duckie” was also released as a single, hitting the Billboard charts and getting a Grammy award nomination. Everyone involved in the album received a Gold Record from Recording Industry Association of America to commemorate more than a million dollars in sales. Columbia Records did a second release later that year which included an accompanying book within a fold-out album cover.
In June 1965, 28-year-old Jim Henson started a written log of his activities in what became known as “The Red Book.” He noted down what had happened up until that point (deemed “Ancient History”) and then recorded anything that he felt was worth recording as single line journal entries until the end of 1988.
Selected curated entries courtesy of The Jim Henson Company Archives.