Kermit the Frog’s rendition of “The Rainbow Connection” from The Muppet Movie was included in the National Recording Registry Class of 2020. Each year, the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress inducts songs or audio recordings “worthy of preservation for all time based on their cultural, historical or aesthetic importance in the nation’s recorded sound heritage.” Among many other iconic recordings comes the new inclusion of Kermit’s popular song, and the world-famous Muppet couldn’t be prouder.
“Well, gee, it’s an amazing feeling to officially become part of our nation’s history,” Kermit the Frog said of the honor in an interview with the Librarian of Congress, Dr. Carla Hayden. “It’s a great honor. And I am thrilled – I am thrilled! – to be the first frog on the list!”
Explaining the decision to memorialize “The Rainbow Connection, Hayden responded: “Your performance of ‘The Rainbow Connection’ has sold millions of copies worldwide and it’s beloved by everyone.”
On his official Twitter account, Kermit said of the announcement: “Great news for the lovers, the dreamers, and… well, me! I’m so honored that “The Rainbow Connection,” as sung by yours truly in The Muppet Movie, is in the @LibraryCongress National Recording Registry Class of 2020!”
Performed by original Kermit the Frog puppeteer Jim Henson in The Muppet Movie, “The Rainbow Connection” was written by Paul Williams and Kenneth Ascher. The song earned the pair two Academy Award nominations for their work, and while artists like Kacey Musgraves have continued to cover the song as recently as 2019, the original Muppet Movie version is perhaps the most iconic. Williams says the song is about “the immense power of faith. We don’t know how it works, but we believe that it does… sometimes the questions are more beautiful than the answers.”
Last year, Kermit revisited “The Rainbow Connection” with a special performance of the song posted on the official YouTube channel for The Muppets. The song came at just the right time during a particularly rough year, with one top comment on the video reading, “Sometimes when the world is falling apart all you need is a frog and a banjo.”
“This is a million times more effective than the millionaires singing ‘Imagine,'” said another Muppets fan.
Released in 1979 during the original run of The Muppet Show on television, The Muppet Movie follows Kermit the Frog embarking on a cross-country trip to Hollywood, meeting many of his Muppet pals along the way. It was a tremendously successful hit at the box office, and many more Muppets movies would follow in subsequent years. In 2009, The Muppet Movie itself was selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Film Registry, joining other legendary movies classified as “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant.”
These days, Kermit the Frog is still doing his thing on Muppets Now, the latest incarnation of the franchise on Disney+. Those who prefer the classic episodes can also stream The Muppet Show on the streamer, and The Muppet Movie is available on Disney+ as well. This news comes to us from The Hollywood Reporter.