Monday, August 18, 2008

Behind The Music: The Muppaphones

Ever wonder what happened to those stars of TV, the Muppaphones?

They made their TV debut on The Muppet Show in 1976, with their front-man and manager Marvin Suggs.

Their performance was so popular that they made several more TV appearances on The Muppet Show with Mr. Suggs, including their world-famous performance of Witch Doctor.

But life on TV was not a life of glamor. As they came to realize, Marvin Suggs was not acting with the Muppaphones' best interests in mind. Here, seen in a rare behind the scenes interview, we get a glimpse of the life of the Muppaphones.

By 1978, the rigors of being a TV celebrity, and the constant abuse from Marvin Suggs became too much for them. In one famous performance of the Blue Danube Waltz, they came close to having a breakdown on stage. Fortunately, the show's guest star, Lesley Ann Warren intervened, preventing total disaster.

After that fateful night, the Muppaphones realized that working with Marvin Suggs would ultimately lead to a bad end. Since Mr. Suggs held the rights to the name Muppaphone and was a co-signer of their Muppet Show contract, they were forced to quit the show in order to perform solo. Unfortunately, there was not much other work for them, and they were forced to take whatever jobs were available, including several advertising jobs. But these employers were often more cruel than Mr. Suggs was, forcing them to receive plastic surgery, including prosthetic limbs, in order to get jobs.

But even that was ultimately doomed to failure. Finally, they hit rock bottom, and finished their careers performing in a public service announcement for a New York poison control center.

1 comment:

Ladysmith said...

Now THAT was a blast from the past! I haven't heard or seen that PSA since I was a kid! And I found that I remembered the words as I was listening to it.

Thanks for the nostalgia!