I learned the majority of my early dance moves from American Bandstand, and believe me when I say I can GROOVE.
Dick Clark’s show spanned generations: from Ritchie Valens to Luther Vandross; from the Monkees to Madonna; Dusty Springfield, Elvis Presley, Mariah Carey and more. Dick Clark hosted every show and introduced new dances like the “pony” and the “twist” to scores of young people nationwide.
Rather than do what so many others at the time did and have white artists cover the songs of black artists, Dick Clark put everybody on, singing their own music.
Kids today can hardly fathom that this kind of segregation was the norm (thank God) and that’s due to people like Dick who recieved death threats when he traveled in integrated buses with the American Bandstand acts.
Below is a video of a very young Michael Jackson performing with the Jackson 5 on American Bandstand – listen to the voice on that kid! (p.s. both the pictures above are of Dick Clark and Michael Jackson.)
My favorite quote from Dick Clark:
“Music is the soundtrack of your life.”
And it is.
Here’s one of the early memories in my soundtrack – Davy Jones and the Monkees singing Daydream Believer:
Imagine my thrill when I was at a U2 concert at the L.A. Coliseum in 1997 and Davy popped up out of the stage. The whole audience was singing with him and Bono got on his knees and bowed. It was a moment…and I LOVE YouTube because here it is!
What’s on your early soundtrack? Do you remember American Bandstand? Did you ever dance along? Enquiring minds love to know these things here at More Cowbell!