Posts Tagged music video
Shindig. Hulabaloo. Soul Train. Kraft Music Hall. The Midnight Special. Remember them? They’re all iconic 60s and 70s TV music programs that aired on the major U.S. networks and featured the hottest bands of the day lip-synching and fake playing their way through the hits of the day. And the Dave Clark Five’s appearance (click here) on Shindig in 1965 was typical of a mid-60s British Invasion challenge to the Beatles’ dominance. “Catch Us If You Can” was the DC5’s good-time signature song and made it to #4 in the U.S. in the fall of 1965. Shindig aired on ABC for about 18 months until January 1966 when it was replaced by a new series called Batman. Holy cow!
Dick Smothers introduced Paul Revere & The Raiders as a “group of youngsters” for their performance (click here) of “Ups And Downs” on the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour in 1967, about two years before the controversial CBS program was cancelled due to its anti-establishment content. “Ups and Downs” was in the middle of the band’s string of eight straight Billboard Top 25 hits between 1965 and 1968. That was the peak of their popularity, although they would chart several more singles and continue releasing albums well into the 70s. Paul Revere & The Raiders appear in several playlists in Dr. Rock’s Playlist Vault.
“The Weight” is the signature song by The Band, one of the best known songs from the late 60s and one of the top folk-rock tunes of all time. It was released as a single off their debut album, Music From Big Pink, in June 1968. In November two years later, The Band performed “The Weight” live at the Syria Mosque, a popular concert venue in Pittsburgh, PA. Click here for a vintage video of “The Weight,” which includes lengthy shots of drummer Levon Helm, lead guitarist Robbie Robertson and bassist Rick Danko, but unfortunately lacks any views of organist Garth Hudson and only shows pianist Richard Manuel from behind at the end.
The Midnight Special was a television showcase for rock and pop bands that aired from 1972 to 1981. Steely Dan appeared on the program in early 1973 to promote Can’t Buy A Thrill, their debut album from the same year. Click here to view a video of their performance of “Reelin’ In The Years,” the #11 and second single from the album (“Do It Again” reached #6). Introduced by a very hip Bill Cosby, the song features the shortened but still blistering duel by guitarists Jeff “Skunk” Baxter and Elliott Randall (Randall’s longer solo is on the studio version) and backing vocals by David Palmer, who would leave the band shortly thereafter. While recording the band’s second album, Countdown To Ecstasy, Steely Dan co-founder Donald Fagen realized he was capable of handling lead vocals, thus ending Palmer’s role.
The Talking Heads covered Al Green’s soulful “Take Me To The River” on their second LP, More Songs About Buildings And Food. The single reached #29 and pushed the album into the Billboard Top 30, creating a level of commercial success that eluded the Heads on their critically acclaimed debut album, Talking Heads: ’77. Click here for a video of the band playing live in 1978 on the BBC showcase program, The Old Grey Whistle Test. They look way too serious while laying down their art-funk version of Al’s soul classic.