Everyone has a wish list of events from the past that they would like to have the chance to witness or change. Some would dine with dignitaries, some would bear witness to the great art movements, some would prevent wars.
Noble goals, one and all. I’m a little more street with my list. I’d keep Julie Newmar from quitting the “Catwoman” role after only one year. I’d introduce Curley Howard to the concepts of restraint and nutrition, to prevent the world from losing a comic genius at age 46. I’d bi*ch-slap Harry Sinden into stopping Bobby Orr from signing with the Blackhawks. And I’d bring a VCR back to 1975 NYC so I could record the Dictators’ performance at the MS. All-Bare America contest at the Beacon Theater on Sept. 6, 1975.
“More Beauty per Square Inch than the Grand Canyon!”
Promoter Rod Swenson, who later went on to semi-fame as the visionary behind the Plasmatics, attempted to legitimize a little bit of Times Square tawdriness by bringing the strip show uptown and giving it a fancy title.
The Dictators were the special musical guest at this show, later reviewed as “the world’s rankest rock’n’roll band.” I have to think that attending this show to see the band is along the lines of buying Playboy to read the articles. The first 100 patrons were given free copies of the first LP, 97 or which were probably used as projectiles to throw at the band. The band’s reception from the crowd was hostile at best, but let’s be realistic — under the circumstances, Hendrix could have been jamming with Lennon, and they most likely would have been booed if they were blocking the audience’s view of the participants. You would hope that the audience would, at very least, have appreciated the context of hearing a song called “T*ts to You.” They did not. Heathens.
There are a few minutes worth of the contest in the 1976 movie “Jabberwalk,” which has yet to see DVD release. I wonder if Tamara Ward and Lyn Lindgred, the 2 finalists in the contest, show the footage to their grandkids. I think not.
– Salvi C.