First, let me share an email I received a few days ago.
Hey there LT (one of my favorite people on this planet), you may or may not know the current bids for two DAWKS on Ebay are $32.00 and $26.00 respectively, auctions end tomorrow.
This is the one I am dying to have:
Yeah, they're cool and everything but...............................SO WHAT???????????
Keep it groovin',
ModGirl, you made my day with your “my favorite people on this planet” remark. My ego runneth over. But more important it brought to mind the fact that different folks operate with different strokes. In talking to fans of the LT Show, I’m always surprised at what is remembered about the show. It hasn’t been seen for 40 years so I am surprised (and delighted) it’s remembered at all.
ModGirl is groovin’ for a Dawk doll used on the opening of the show and bashed around a bit throughout the hour (I’m told that the doll in question sold for about a hundred bucks). Others remember certain zany bits that I did, or, the lip-sync contests or certain guests they saw for the very first time. As I’m in the middle of picking out bits for the “My Name is Lloyd Thaxton – So What” DVD, that got me thinking about what you might want to see.
My hope is that the DVD will be a legacy to calm in the middle of that chaotic and volatile storm called “The 60s.” Here was this show called, “The Lloyd Thaxton Show” dancing around in the midst of urban riots, civil rights movements, assassinations and war and yet we survived. A fan once told me that when he started watching the show he first thought I was making fun of rock and roll. Then he realized that I was making rock and roll fun. And, that was music to my ears.
There is a wonderful book out right now titled “Laurel Canyon: The Inside Story of Rock-and-Roll's Legendary Neighborhood.” Veteran journalist Michael Walker tells the inside story of the unprecedented gathering of some of the baby boom’s leading musical giants of the 60s who turned Los Angeles into the music capital of the world and forever changed the way popular music is recorded, marketed, and consumed. It’s a fascinating read. Especially to me, as I lived in Laurel Canyon then and still do today.
There is soon to be released a new book by Domenic Priore. “Riot on Sunset Strip: Rock'n'Roll's Last Stand in 60s Hollywood.” This book evokes a raucous, revolutionary time in American culture for those who lived it. I can’t wait to read the book because I just happened to be snap-dab in the middle of that riot, penned down in the famous Schwab's Drug Store.
My hope is that the “My Name is Lloyd Thaxton – So What” DVD, measures up to both of the above books in highlighting the fascinating music and artists of the era. And, even more important, the young people who danced (and performed) to the music. The words in the books are impressive and informational of course, but to complete the story, to get the history straight, you have to hear the music.
That brings me to this question. As a fan, what would you like to see and hear on the DVD?
Think about it and then take mouse in hand and start cliquing away. I realize that after forty years, many of you might have forgotten a few things. Age …does that, you know. That being the case, here’s a list that might help jog your memory.
First there was this insane Thaxton guy host, who lip-synced, finger synced and played more instruments than the entire Juilliard School of Music’s 1965 graduation class. Above he presents Roger Williams’s “Summer Wind” on the piano, mindless of the fact that the studio is being blown away at hurricane force.
Then, there was the lip-sync contest where all you young kids tried to make that insane Thaxton guy look like a rank amateur and, in most cases, succeeded. YouTube, eat your heart out.
There was THE game, “Don’t Lose Your Marbles or You’re Off Your Rocker” where you sat in rocking chairs and lost a marble every time you failed to name the record played. When you lost all your 10 allocated marbles, you were OFF YOUR ROCKER and the lone sane person who kept all the marbles won the game. You were so fast that no one ever heard more than one note of each record.
We then gathered our voices together to form choruses like the Lloyd Thaxton Singers (above) doing The Johnny Mann Singers doing the theme from “Goldfinger.” The mesmerized audience at home (actually) thought you sang so beautifully.
And don’t forget all those great guests: The Turtles, Petula Clark, Marvin Gaye, Johnny Rivers, The Shangri-Las, Ben E. King, Peter, Paul and Mary, and, too many more to show here.
Then there were all those great dances: The Slauson, the Twist, The Hully Gully, the Mash Potato, the Watusi, Swim, Limbo Rock. It's music, music, music.
That’s what I've been thinking.
But, as Gary would say, NEXT!