New Year, New Almanac. Our last effort got a bit buried in the end-of-year lists and general Bowie anniversary activity. So a rebooted Almanac is picking up its run of mix-sixties years. For those new to this series it’s an opportunity to muse on gigs you’ve seen, favourite or otherwise tracks, films, sport – just about anything and everything postable from the year in question. We kick off as ever with a selection of stories from NME: The Rock and Roll Years, a truly fantastic tome that reprints excerpts.
NME : Hang The Jury!
In a rare venture into serious newspaper editorial, the NME has been prompted into the following statement on the drugs-in-pop-lyrics issue.
Last Saturday, seven minutes were cut from the BBC JUKE BOX Jury. The show – pre-recorded the pervious weekend – had including a lengthy discussion on The Game’s recording ‘The Addicted Man’ which the Corporation decided was unsuitable for transmission.
The Game’s disc is concerned with drug taking, and the panel had criticised it mercilessly. Rightly so! BUT IF THE BBC IS GOING TO TURN A COLD HSOULDER TO ALL DRUG-TAKING IMPLICATIONS IN POP MUSIC, IT MIGHT AS WELL SCRUB JBJ IMMEDIATELY.
Directly or indirectly, drugs are playing an increasingly prominent part in pop lyrics – and in last week’s show the BBC had a golden opportunity – in the hands of five acknowledged pop authorities to dismiss this trend as distasteful rubbish. But, they funked the chance….’The Addicted Man’ should never has been released. But the fact that it is now available in shops – even through EMI is belatedly trying to suppress it – makes it a matter of public concern. For this reason, producer Albert Stevenson was wright to include it in the programme, the pity is that the corporation big-wigs throught otherwise.
Donovan has been invited to write music for the British National Theatre production of Shakespare’s As YOu Like It at tha Old Vic, to star Laurence Olivier.
Vietnam Inspires Cliff and Shadwos Movie Drama
The war in Vietnam is the inspiration behind a major film drama featuring Cliff Richard and the Shadows.
As yet untitled, this will be the first dramatic cinema project undertaken by singer and group together, although /cliff did have a (supporting) dramatic ride in his movie debut Serious Charge, eight years ago.
Cliff has said: ‘I particulary wanted to make this war story, I hope it will be a believable production showing how a group of young people can become easily involved in warfare, even though they do not want to be. The movie will not actually be about Vietnam, but it has been inspired by it, and it will proejct a similar situation…Four songs will be featured. It won’t be a musical by any means – and we don’t intend to play p the comedy angle as w e did about the H Bomb in Finders Keepers.
Yardbirds Ballet Staged In Paris
An hour-long ballet written by The Yardbirds and with all music played by the group, is premiered at the Paris Olympia on December 13th and 14th. Still untitled, it is being presented by French impresario Bruno Coquetrix, and the initial performance will be filmed for subsequent TV screening in France and Sweden.
The ballet will be danced by BBC-TV dance team Pan’s People, choreographed by Flick Colby, and the director is Sean Murphy. The Yardbirds will perform the music a vantage point at the side of the stage.
Discussions are taking place with regard to the group recording an LP of the ballet music, primarily for the French market. There are no present plans for the production to be staged elsewhere, although promoters are being sounded out on the possibility of a UK production.
The lead story was part of a quintessential late sixties news staple: the squares being drawn into what to us appear utterly surreal situations as a result of the kids tripping out man. Here’s further Wikipedia on Juke Box Jury in 67:
In January 1967, the Sunday tabloid newspaper News of the World in a series of attacks on the new hippy sub-culture and LSD, castigated David Jacobs in one article for playing the Mothers of Invention single “It Can’t Happen Here” on a Juke Box Jury broadcast in November 1966 as it was ‘recorded on a trip’, and also blamed two of the jury for voting it a hit. The jury on this occasion included Bobby Goldsboro, Susan Maughan and comedian Ted Rogers.
A future Afterword quiz entry surely: find the link between Ted Rogers, David Jacobs and Frank Zappa.
So usual rules: anything and everything from the year in question – any footage of the Yardbirds ballet. I have posted the Game’s somewhat pedestrian single in the comments to kick things off.