Dr. Teeth and The Electric Mayhem (1976-)
Dr. Teeth (vocals)
Floyd Pepper (bass)
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The Electric Mayhem is a band composed of Muppets: Dr. Teeth (a keyboard-playing singer/spider), Floyd Pepper (with pink skin, his name is an allusion to Pink Floyd, he is the bass man and a lead singer), Janice (lead guitarist and flower child, voiced in the original run of The Muppet Show by two actors, one female, one male; she also plays the tambourine and sings), Zoot (out-of-luck saxophone player named after Zoot Sims), and Animal (wild monster who plays the drums). Occasionally Clifford (a humanoid who looks like a catfish) would play some percussion instruments with them. Lips (plays the trumpet for the band) joined the band occasionally during later broadcasts.
Janice was originally voiced by Fran Brill in one of the Muppet Show pilots, replaced by Eren Ozker in season one, and then by Richard Hunt who gave Janice her Valley Girl voice.
Their most popular song was "Can You Picture That" from The Muppet Movie
. It was written by hit songwriter Paul Williams
and Kenny Ascher.
Dr. Teeth's character was designed and voiced by Jim Henson. He was designed to be a cross between Dr. John and Elton John, possibly with a touch of Leon Russell as well. Performing the gruff voice of Dr. Teeth was so hard on Henson's vocal cords that he had to pre-record his voice and "lip sync" his puppet to the track.
Various members of the Jack Parnell in-house band loaned their talents to The Electric Mayhem's music, with vocals and puppetry added later. Ronnie Verrell provided Animal's drumming, Frank Reedy did Zoot's sax, and Tommy McQauter did Lips' trumpet. (thanks, Jason - Wairoa, New Zealand, for contributions above)
Henson controlled the body and face of the Dr. Teeth puppet, while another puppeteer controlled the puppet's hands.
The group was originally conceived in one of Jim Henson's show proposals as playing "...songs like "Sunshine" from Hair. In fact, they are all dressed to out-hair the Hair cast."
The Electric Mayhem drives in a psychedelically painted bus.
Dr. Teeth claims that his gold tooth is made of his melted-down gold records.
The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence reveals that Animal is kept safely chained up in a basement while he's not performing. Appropriately enough, Frank Oz summarizes Animal's character in just five words: "Sex, sleep, food, drums and pain."
Animal learned to play the drums from his mother, LaVerne.
Dr. Floyd Pepper plays his bass left-handed like Paul McCartney. He also racked up most of the lead singing credits for The Electric Mayhem and claims to be a brilliant songwriter even though everybody hates his music.
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