Muppet Treasure Island and it’s awesome soundtrack
So, this week’s topic for the League is “pirates”. Unfortunately, I’ve already extolled the virtues of one of my favorite pirate movies of all time, The Pirate Movie, during it’s 30 year anniversary last year. So, I can’t un-pop that cork. My next best option is to talk about Muppet Treasure Island. And more specifically, the soundtrack.
Muppet Treasure Island was released in 1996. It was the second of the Muppet movies, after Muppet Christmas Carol, to be made in partnership with Disney and after Jim Henson’s death. It starred Tim Curry as Long John Silver and Kevin Bishop as Jim Hawkins. The movie, financially, was a success earning a higher gross than the last three movies.
The movie itself is funny and clever. Curry is great as Silver. Bishop is, well, not awesome. His voice is really high, like a 6 year old girl. It’s really sort of annoying. Other than that I enjoy this movie as much as I enjoy Muppet Christmas Carol. In general, I see Muppet Christmas Carol as a better movie but Muppet Treasure Island has the better soundtrack.
Now, let’s take a look at that awesome soundtrack with a bunch of very catchy, totally Muppet-style songs that are all pirate themed.
Here are some of my favorite songs from the soundtrack.
Shiver My Timbers is the song that plays over the opening credits featuring pirates burying treasure on an island. Treasure Island. It’s very dark and is very chant-like. It’s probably my favorite song, and it’s totally pirate-y.
Cabin Fever is my second favorite song. It features the cast singing about having “cabin fever” while sailing out at sea. It’s absurd and over-the-top and completely bananas. That’s why I love it. It has a distinctly “islands” feel to it with the steel drums. My favorite lyric in the song:
“Cabin fever has grabbed us all aboard,
This once fine vessel has become a floating psycho ward.”
Sailing for Adventure is the song that sort of jump starts the action in the movie. It’s standard but fun, the rats have the best lyrics. Oh, you also get a full load of Bishop’s girly falsetto. But then again, you get a great Curry lyric in which he swings for the fences and sings the hell out of his few lines.
Professional Pirate is the one full number that is shouldered by Tim Curry. The song is okay, but the joy is in listening to Tim deliver it, Curry-style.
Yes, I still own this soundtrack and yes I still listen to it. I think the movie is a bit underrated and fun. It’s definitely better than Muppets from Space.
Other Pirate entries from around the league:
-Shawn over at Branded in the 80s talks about pirate cartoons
-Jaime at ShezCrafti talks about some of her favorite pirate songs
-Dex blows my mind talking about a “pirate metal” band called Alestorm. Seriously, that’s a thing. And it’s awesome.
-Goodwill Geeks uses the opportunity to start a three part article about pirate toys and pop culture