American Bandstand (1952–1989)

TV Series   |  TV-G   |    |  Music


Episode Guide
American Bandstand (1952) Poster

Dick Clark hosts a daily to weekly dance show that features the latest hit music for the attending teens to dance to. In addition, the show has performances by popular musicians and audience members rate songs.


7.8/10
246

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  • Dick Clark and Frank Gorshin in American Bandstand (1952)
  • Bobby Pickett in American Bandstand (1952)
  • Bobby Pickett in American Bandstand (1952)
  • Frank Gorshin in American Bandstand (1952)
  • American Bandstand (1952)
  • Bobby Pickett in American Bandstand (1952)

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21 October 2002 | skillz
"MTV" spelled the beginning of the end of "AB"
Pepsi Cola had a very catchy slogan during the 1980s. But unlike "Pepsi" American Bandstand was NOT the choice of a New Generation! The long running music show had a big part in mainstreaming Rock N' Roll. Long time host Dick Clark had a winner for decades. Adolescents was the backbone of it's audience, butGeneration X was slow to embrace AB because MTV conspired with: syndicated, network and local music video programs to challenge American Bandstand's legacy. Music Videos had very little if any audience interaction, unlike Bandstand. This is regardless of whether the interaction had to do with a studio or television audience. VeeJays merely played videotapes. But on the contrary most television viewers did not have to wait for Noon Eastern on Saturday to see their favorite artists perform. Music Videos from decades prior to the Eighties consisted of footage from American Bandstand and talk or variety shows. But now the producers and directors of videos were no longer limited to the set of American Bandstand. They can shoot their videos on location or on major studio backlots. They had the freedom to use : animation, special effects, or any other format they liked. But during this added dimension in pop music what was the viewing experience like for American Bandstand? You tuned in to watch other people dance and to watch recording artists give lip-synch performances. "Dude! That is like, so lame!" As the youngsters would say in 1980s vernacular. With the advent of the Music Video Shows American Bandstand just seemed kind of weak! You may say "Skillz! if it was so lame then explain why a program like the syndicated 'Soul Train' continued to flourish with a simular blueprint of dancing and lip-synching?" I will tell you why! Because viewers wanted to dress in the festive gear that they saw on Soul Train, and they wanted to emulate the dance moves that they saw on the show that was dubbed "The Hippest Trip in America". You watched Soul Train so that you can look and dress the part; and you went clubbing with hopes that you would not leave the disco by yourself! But even compared to its more Nubiancentric competitor American Bandstand paled by comparison. Most of what you saw on Bandstand in the 1980s consisted of dancers dressed like they were at a church picnic and moved like wind-up dolls on the AB dance floor. AB was clearly a shadow of its former self. During the decade of New Wave and Boat Shoes and Micheal Jackson kids just didn't aspire to appear on American Bandstand like they did during previous decades. AB simply experienced the ratings dooldrums at best. Finally ABC ended it's long association with the music show and American Bandstand crawled to basic cable to die.

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