Posts from the ‘Television’ Category

The Earworm Masters #2 – Gerardo “Rico Suave” [1990]

You may only know two of the words from this song, but they would be the only two you need to know.

I have a hard time finding another video that epitomizes 1990 than Rico Suave.  Most everyone is clean, lean, sexy, well-dressed, and looking like they’re all from Miami Beach. And the mullets, legendary in length, offset an amazing series of perms on the women.

The song features several samples, most notably for me is one from James Brown’s Give It Up or Turn It Loose and Chamo Candela by Daquiri.  In a satiric honor which also is a measure of the song’s popularity, Weird Al Yankovic covered the song in Taco Grande.  The beat and the horns are catchy enough to get stuck in your head for days.

And that is why Rico Suave is today’s Earworm Master!

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On Youtube –

14 December 1969 – The Jackson 5 Performs for the First Time on the Ed Sullivan Show


In many ways they changed the face of popular music, and on this day in 1969 the Jackson 5 also wowed the TV audiences of America when they played the Ed Sullivan Show.

The Jackson 5 started playing in 1964; their debut album “Diana Ross Presents…” was released in December 1069 and coincided with their performance on network television.  They would go on to rule much of pop radio in the 1970s.  The band became famous by focusing on a blend of soul, R&B, tight musicianship, and swift dance moves.  Well-crafted songs written by “The Corporation” at Motown also helped.   My sister absolutely loved the Jackson 5, and hearing any song they did between 1969 and 1975 makes me think of her.

Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, and Marlon still perform today as The Jacksons.

Can’t Get the Bewitched Theme Song Out Of My Head!


Collage created in Microsoft

There could be worse things looping on my internal 8-Track, so having the theme from Bewitched stuck in my head isn’t such a bad gig.  And what a show, for those who remember all the noteworthy characters like Endora, Uncle Arthur, the nosey Mrs. Kravitz, and even the sleazy Larry Tate.  And let’s be honest: Elizabeth Montgomery was beautiful, and lost to us far too early.

So here’s to all those days after elementary school when I would come home and watch Bewitched over a bowl of hot Spaghetti-Os!

Telly Savalas for Player’s Club – “It’s Bonus Time Baby!” [1986]

I can’t think of a better representative for casino/hotel entertainment than Telly Savalas.

This Player’s Club commercial from 1986 shows Telly giving us the lowdown on how to get his life of ease while in Vegas or Atlantic City. For $125 and an annual fee, members got discounts on all sorts of stuff on the Boardwalk or on The Strip. It was a pretty sweet deal.

“It’s bonus time baby!”

The Mod Squad [1968 – 1973]

“One White, One Black, One Blond”

Photo above is courtesy of We Heart Vintage, a retro gem of solid distinction: The Mod Squad. Clarence Williams III, Michael Cole, and Peggy Lipton starred as “hipper than hip” 20-somethings with street cred – which allowed them to blend with underground society in Los Angeles.

Brainchild of producers Aaron Spelling and Danny Thomas, the screenplay for the series began with true stories collected from the real operations of a narcotics squad in the 1950s; but it took producers the better part of ten years to get the network on board.  Once they did, the show was a hit – big enough to run for five years and over 120 episodes.

Little known fact: Harrison Ford played an unnamed cop in the 1968 pilot.

The show’s impact was far reaching and wide spread.  Each actor – to this day – is known for their role.  Styles were introduced and made popular merely by being part of the show.  An obvious dichotomy – a younger generation being part of “The Fuzz” – tied two worlds together in an era when each were seen more as polar opposites.  The storylines – hip and somewhat raw for the time – resonated with a youthful public.

And, I’ll admit, Peggy Lipton’s beauty resonated with a third-grade me.

Peggy Lipton

As “Julie Barnes,” Peggy Lipton played a freestyled runaway from San Francisco.  Born in 1946, Lipton had already been a successful model and actress by the time she was signed to The Mod Squad.  In later life she also joined the cast of Twin Peaks, and also battled successfully against colon cancer.  Lipton was married to Quincy Jones for many years.

Michael Cole

Michael Cole’s role of “Pete Cochran” cast him as a guy kicked out of the house by his well-to-do parents, after getting in trouble with the law.  He initially didn’t want the role, thinking he would be playing a snitch.  He realized later that the character was more rounded.  Cole began acting in 1961, and has continued in movies and TV since then.

Clarence Williams III

Clearly the most iconic character of the show was Lincoln “Linc” Hayes – played by veteran stage actor Clarence Williams III.  Linc was the street-wise kid from Watts, whose massive afro, groovy shirts, and smooth tongue made him a show favorite.  The expression “Solid” is firmly associated with Linc and his inner-city style.

Williams became interested in theater while attending programs at the YMCA, and starting 1960 he had a long career on the stage before The Mod Squad – returning to theater once more after the series went off the air.  He is still active in stage and screen to this day.


More about The Mod Squad – On Wikipedia

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