Popcorn, pictures, ice cream and a whole lotta “Jive Talkin’” and “Shadow Dancing.” That was the scene last Friday night at Julia Randall School — it’s gymnasium transformed into a multi-colored, light-splashed discoteca.
This year, the theme for JRE’s annual PTO-sponsored family dance was “The ’70s!” All evening, the disco ball dance floor was “Stayin’ Alive” with all the diversity that the ’70s decade had to offer. Young, tie-dyed, peace-proclaiming hippies were rocking and doing “The Hustle” with their more sophisticated, leisure-suited dads and flowing-gowned moms, with the dance floor screaming, “Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now!”
The music of the 1970s was certainly dynamic and multifarious, wasn’t it? With the Vietnam War still at the forefront of America’s thoughts and emotions, anti-war, flower-power sentiment clearly influenced the rock music of the early part of the decade. Then in the mid-1970s with the war behind us, a new genre of music swept like wildfire across our country (and the world) — disco!
With rock music taking a backseat to the disco beat in the late 1970s, radio stations were pumping out little besides boogie-this and boogie-that. Among the many “boogie” hits at the top of the charts were “Boogie Fever,” “Boogie Nights,” “Boogie Shoes,” “Boogie Child” and my favorite, “Boogie Oogie Oogie.”
KC & the Sunshine Band, the Silver Connection and Kool & the Gang filled the airwaves with a new dance beat never before heard. Disco divas Gloria Gaynor (“I Will Survive”), Anita Ward (“Ring My Bell”) and Donna Summer (“Bad Girls”) were cashing in on their new electronic, syncopated sound.
Helping propel the disco craze even higher into “Boogie Wonderland” was 1977’s blockbuster movie hit, “Saturday Night Fever,” whose soundtrack was primarily written by the Bee Gees and featured six of their hits. The album was released shortly after the movie debut and was an instant success, staying atop the album charts for 24 straight weeks from January to July 1978, and it stayed on Billboard’s album charts for an incredible 120 weeks until March 1980.
This week’s music trivia question is: Which of the following Bee Gees hits was NOT featured in the movie, “Saturday Night Fever”? A) “You Should Be Dancing,” B) “How Deep Is Your Love,” C) “Hot Stuff,” or D) “Night Fever”
If you’re caller number five this week and have the correct answer, you’ll win a “Best of Disco” CD — sure to make you eager to drag your old leisure suit out of the closet and “Boogie Down” to the Buffalo Bar and Grill this Saturday night.
Now, let’s see how we did with last week’s music trivia question, which was: Can you name the Canadian-born teen phenom who has recorded, among his many other Billboard hits, “One Time,” “One Less Lonely Girl” and “Baby?”
Is this 17-year-old singer, whose movie documentary was recently at the Sawmill Theatres, A) Lil Wayne, B) Jason Aldean, C) Justin Bieber, or D) Paul Anka?
The correct answer was Justin Bieber. Lil Wayne is a current “Top 40” rap artist. Jason Aldean is a popular country singer (his duet with Kelly Clarkson, “Don’t You Wanna Stay” just last week went to No. 1 on Billboard’s country chart). Like Justin Bieber, Paul Anka also was born in Canada and became a teen idol, scoring his first No. 1 hit, “Diana,” in 1957 at the age of 16.
Congratulations to last week’s music trivia winner, “Corb” Corbin, who won a “Best of Justin Bieber” CD.
A little about Corb. He was born and raised in St. Louis. Already tired at age 19 of the long winters in the Midwest, he moved to Phoenix, where his brother lived. Corb soon began working in the boat sales business and later became the owner of a boat dealership.
After several relocations around the country, Corb left Florida 19 years ago to live in Payson, which brought him closer to his two daughters in Arizona, one in Fountain Hills and the other in Sierra Vista.
Corb is now retired, but stays very active managing his rental properties, playing on the over-55 Payson Cougars’ softball team and participating in the Senior Olympics track and field program. He also enjoys singing karaoke at both the American Legion Hall and the Elks Lodge.
Corb’s favorite music is ’50s through ’80s rock and classic country. He says he particularly likes the music of Elvis Presley, George Strait and Carrie Underwood.
Lastly, you can check out pictures of last week’s Julia Randall School’s ’70s dance on my Web site. With all the high-energy dancing that night, I’m sure the kids and their families left exhausted. I know Ann and I did.
Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah!