You know how some folks look disdainfully on today’s music and say “Damn, anything could be a hit nowadays”? Well, guess what, people. That’s been the case for a long-ass time.
To wit: the 1993 hit “Sesame’s Treet” by the British group Smart E’s. Their formula for chart success was as follows: take the theme from one of the greatest children’s shows of all time, throw a (then novel) techno/rave/house beat behind it and stir. Add in a video that makes clear that this song was conceive while on drugs (as if you couldn’t tell from the group’s name), and voila! A song that reached #2 on the British singles chart in 1992 (and I could have sworn it hit the Hot 100 here in the U.S.. Wikipedia, are you lying to me?).
As silly as the song is, I was pretty wowed when I first heard it (during my senior year of high school), and it’s still kind of a fun listen. What surprises me most nearly two decades later is that no one from Jim Henson productions or Children’s Television Workshop sued the shit out of the Smart E’s. For some reason, I don’t picture anyone at Henson HQ signing off on the use of the sample.
Of course, Smart E’s disappeared after their one hit. Sad, though. Can you imagine what a rave remake of the theme from “Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood” would have sounded like? #1 smash, I tell ya.