Generation X: Mid 60s – Mid 70s | “Solid Gold”…The music, the dancing, the too-tight clothing and the hair weaves.

Photo Credit: Solid Gold Dancers (http://www.myspace.com/solid_gold_dancers)

Photo Credit: Solid Gold Dancers (http://www.myspace.com/solid_gold_dancers)

Raise your hand if you watched “Solid Gold”.

I began watching “Solid Gold” when I still lived in the islands.  I had never, ever seen anything like it.  This was American Television not the one-studio local island broadcast television service. No, this show had Ms. Dionne Warwick (there were other hosts later on, too, remember?) and the Solid Gold dancers.

Let’s talk about the Solid Gold dancers for a minute…

Hair — what I would learn decades later wasn’t always “real” — whipping every which way.  Too tight clothing — leotards and shiny spandex — with bulging body parts (had I even had “the talk” yet?  O__o  Had any of us???).

But back to the show…

Of course, the whole idea was to showcase popular entertainers of the time. Solid Gold had the Countdown of the Top 10 popular songs of the week. Remember that?  Remember hearing, “8, 6, 7, 5, 3 – 0, niye-eee-ine”…and “Like a rhinestone cowboy…”, not to mention any song by John Cougar Mellencamp (before he used the Mellencamp and was simply, “John Cougar”) singing, “Hurts so good…c’mon baby make it hurt so good…”, Olivia Newton-John’s “Let’s get physical, physical…I wanna get physical…”  and the puppet Madam?  Now, that’s craziness if there ever was crazy right there.  “She” was something else. This was not a Sesame Street puppet. Um, she never made it to the neighborhood.  By the way, if you didn’t d-i-e laughing when you looked at the video and see her outfit get caught in her mouth and she starts choking ( :50) …funny stuff…you must watch it again. Cry-i-n-g.

I. was. absolutely. glued. to. the. television.

According to YouTube, this was the first “Solid Gold” episode (in two parts) – Part 1 and Part 2.

Remember Andy Gibb?  (Rest in peace, Andy.)  And Marilyn McCoo?  I’m still trying to figure her out.  If you can shed a light on Ms. McCoo, please do.  I’m clueless.

But can we go back to the dancers and the dancing?

What was up with the twirling, butt fanning, slithering on the floor, draping themselves over the stage boulders, sliding down and against the walls, shoulder rolling, and of course, the posing?  All. that. posing. 

Since I took dance classes for-ever, the “dancing” was questionable.  They did a whole lot of stuff to fill the air that had traces of ballet and early hip hop (occasionally, gymnastics was thrown into the mix).  But let’s be honest, they didn’t “dance” to the beat 95.5% of the time.  They covered up their sashaying with props — lots of props — and awful 80s dance outfits…

…and hair (weaves).

What was with the hair?  Hm?  The hair was teased.  The hair was high and wide.  I was naive   What — you mean some of those women (yes, the women of color) didn’t have their own, real hair on their heads?!  How could that be??  What do you mean you can buy hair??  When you lived in the islands, you never knew this was possible.  America was truly the Land of Wonder.

Alright, that’s it for my little trip down memory lane.  Ah, Gen X, we really were treated to some of the best television ever.

“Solid Gold”:  It was so camp.

I leave you now with a stylin’ Janet Jackson singing, “Young Love“.  Enjoy!

P.S.  And still on the subject of the dancers.  (Obviously, I have issues…but I’m working through them.) The leotards on the female dancers were cut too high. Way too high.

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Generation X: Mid 60s – Mid 70s | “Members Only”

Photo Credit: Retro-Ads.net

Alright, cool kids.  Remember this?

The early 1980s brought flash and dash.  Big hair.  Big shoulders.  Big pants.  Big shirts. Bold colors…

…And “Members Only”. 

Someone came up with the brilliant idea to market a jacket with two simple words, and it took the decade by storm.  I’m not quite sure what the marketing team at “Members Only” was thinking — could it be we would all be a gang?

*blink*

The 80s was a time of Saturday morning programming, after school specials, and of course, movies and music videos featuring dancers looking tough and stuff.  Completing the “look” — “Members Only”.

Coolness personified.

Remember the posing that went along with it when you got a jacket, which of course went well with your bright, neon tops and oversized stirrup pants (for the girls) and parachute pants (for the boys)?  Those clothes:  Priceless.  Tragic.  Wrong in so. many. ways.  You styled your “Members Only” jacket zipper up, zipper down, fake Ray Bans on (for the boys).  For the girls, you just made your hair that much higher and bigger.

Hmmm…What was the jacket made of?  Was it flammable?!  Oh God.  What the h*ll was that thing?!  Polyester?  Cotton?  smh.  sigh.  It didn’t matter.  It was the baddest thing at the mall.

Surprise, surprise, 30 years later, the “Members Only” brand is still around…

…and so are we, Gen X-ers.  So are we.

*Wonders if “Members Only” will call me to do modeling gig as a Gen X-er in jackets complete with retro poses in my 5″ heels, of course…I could totally do that. (Who am I kidding?  No, I couldn’t…Okay, yes I could.)*