Glimpses of Yesteryears: Rare and Forgotten Photos
By Sarah Norman | November 17, 2023
The Rebel Yell-er, Billy Idol back in 1978.
Collected here are reminders of humanity’s strength, sources of nostalgia, and moments of unity. Whether it be moments of victory, a place of common gatherings like a record store, or those special entertainers and public figures who somehow always managed to bring people together. Here are some snippets into our unified past.
William Michael Albert Broad, aka, Billy Idol, first achieved fame back in the 1970s as the lead singer of the punk band Generation X. He eventually embarked on a solo career which was a good call because that’s what led to Idol becoming an idol on an international level. He was pretty much the poster boy for the MTV-driven "Second British Invasion". His debut studio album Billy Idol (1982) was wildly successful, with hit singles "Dancing with Myself" and "White Wedding".
His second studio album Rebel Yell (1983) once again, was a huge commercial success. It was certified double platinum, selling two million copies in the United States. A number of successful albums followed these until the second half of the 90’s when he decided to step out of the public eye and focus on his personal life. He released comeback album Devil's Playground in 2005 and in 2014 came Kings & Queens of the Underground.
1955 photoshoot with Marilyn and cute pup.
This photograph taken by Milton H. Greene back in 1955 was for Look magazine's editorial on Oriental Gowns. On this occasion, Milton photographed Marilyn at his New York studio on March 28, 1955. As you can see the staging area included an embroidered ottoman, an abundance of cushions, and folding dressing screen. He had her dressed in an Oriental style black robe and snuggled up with an adorable Pekinese pup.
Marilyn loved animals, Frank Sinatra once gifted her an adorable white fluff she named Mafia Honey, or Maf for short. The name was said to be in jest and as a reference to his alleged “mafia ties” through Sinatra.
Valerie Bertinelli, Battle of the Network Stars, 1979.
Pictured here is Valerie Bertinelli in the 1979 run of Battle of the Network Stars. Bertinelli was playing on behalf of the CBS team along with Team Captain Jamie Farr, Catherine Bach, Patrick Duffy, Lou Ferrigno, and Leif Garrett.
The series aired on ABC but featured teams of TV stars from all three major networks competing against each other in sporting events. ABC, CBS, and NBC would gather their teams, choose a team leader and let the games commence. Regular occurring events included swimming, kayaking, volleyball, golf, tennis, outdoor bowling, cycling, running, and 3-on-3 football There was also the baseball dunk, the obstacle course and a game of "Simon Says".
Cindy Morgan sitting pretty on the set of the film, Tron (1982).
Computer culture was really just budding when Tron came out, so in a way, it served as a landmark film for that counterculture. It’s biggest fans were those who spent a chunk of their youth in arcades and who witnessed the birth of the Internet. It was the first time that an entire world was created with computer animation.
For those unfamiliar with this iconic film, the story synopsis is as follows: “A computer hacker is abducted into the digital world and forced to participate in gladiatorial games where his only chance of escape is with the help of a heroic security program.” It stars Jeff Bridges, the lovely Cindy Morgan, Bruce Boxleitner, David Warner, and Barnard Hughes.
200,000 people listen as Martin Luther King delivers "I Have A Dream" speech - August 28th, 1963.
The overwhelmingly massive but peaceful rally was the largest assembly for a redress of grievances that the capital had ever seen. King was the last speaker. He spoke of struggle and stressed the importance nonviolent action and protest. “Let us not wallow in the valley of despair.” He told the crowd, then he went on to deliver what became the best-known speech in U.S. history, second only to the Gettysburg Address.
“ I have a dream….
that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.’ I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slaveowners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today....”
He ended his 16-minute speech with his vision of racial harmony:
“When we allow freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men, and white men, Jews, and Gentiles, Protestants, and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, ‘Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!'”
Robin Williams hits the big time - 1979.
Very few things can pull people together than laughter and boy, was Robin Williams sure the master of doing just that. No matter how your day unraveled you could turn on an episode of Mork and Mindy and laugh it all away with family… and the rest of the country because just about everyone else was watching too. Nielsen ratings were very high, ranking at 3.
Mork & Mindy was Robin Williams’ first big break. This comedic role launched his career and propelled him towards stardom. Williams won the world over in his role as Mork from Ork, a bumbling alien who moves in with an earthling named Mindy. The roomies attempt to maintain a normal household which goes about as well as expected.
Marvin Gaye with a parrot in California (1976).
Pictured here is Marvin Gaye taking a dip in California with an Amazon Parrot on his arm back in 1976. The singer, songwriter and record producer contributed to shaping the sound of Motown back in the 1960s. Then in the 1970s, he and Stevie Wonder became the first artists to break away from traditional production companies. Gaye recorded the concept albums What's Going On and Let's Get It On. It was Gaye's later recordings that ended up influencing several contemporary R&B subgenres: quiet storm and neo soul.
On April 1, 1984, tragedy struck when Gaye's father, Marvin Gay Sr., fatally shot him at their house in Los Angeles after an argument escalated. After the shooting, he simply went outside and awaited his arrest. Gaye Sr. was given a divorce by his wife of 49-years in addition to a six-year suspended sentence and five years' probation for the shooting.
Girl riding on a Moped in 1965.
They are cute, speedy, great on gas… what’s not to love about the moped? Mopeds, or elements of the basic scooter design have been present in some of the earliest motorcycles, including those made in 1914 and even earlier. Scooter development continued to grow in Europe and the United States between the World Wars and gained in popularity post-World War II with the introductions of the Vespa and the Lambretta.
These scooters provided economical transportation for the everyday person. They were designed to be easy to operate, maintain, and store. They’re affordable and the licensing and insurance requirements for scooters are far easier than for cars in most parts of the world.
Princess Margaret meeting The Beatles at the Royal Variety Show. (November 1963 )
Beatlemania was in full form at this point in time so to say the audience was massive and frenzied is a bit of an understatement. They were the most anticipated act of the 19-act show, they were seventh to go on. When the applause died down and it was time for their very last number of the night, Lennon made the announcement which guaranteed them headlines in all the next day's newspapers.
“For our last number, I'd like to ask your help. The people in the cheaper seats clap your hands. And the rest of you, if you'd just rattle your jewelry. We'd like to sing a song called Twist And Shout.”
What a tough act to follow!
Julius Erving aka Dr. J, arriving in stylish attire at the 1976 ABA Finals.
Erving, known for popularizing slam dunking in basketball, began his professional career in 1968 and set many records in the game. He played for the Virginia Squires, New York Nets and the Philadelphia 76ers. Known as Dr. J., Erving was the sixth-highest scorer in ABA and NBA history with combined 30,026 points.
He was given four MVP awards and was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1993. Other honors include being named to the NBA's 50th Anniversary All-Time team and named one of the 40 most important athletes of all time by Sports Illustrated in 1994. Then, in 2004, he was inducted into the Nassau County Sports Hall of Fame.
Princess Diana has a chat with Elton John as George Michael watches (1980's).
Pictured here is Princess Diana chatting it up with friends Elton John and George Michael at the 'Feed the World' Live Aid concert. Diana was dubbed the people’s princess and an angel. She had many adoring fans, including her celebrity friends who demonstrated an outpouring of grief after her loss and still continue on the anniversary of her death each year. Elton John and George Michael were both friends to Diana. In fact, she turned pop icon George Michael often for support during her bitter divorce battle with Prince Charles. They first met at a concert in the 80's and quickly grew extremely close. Royalty and pop royalty.
Drew Carey, United States Marine. Circa 1978
Pictured here is actor and comedian Drew Carey, back in 1978 when he was in the Marine Corps Reserve, he served 6 years. Carey credits the Marine Corps for being the largest contributing factor to who he is in life. He told Time Magazine, “it instilled a great sense of discipline that I can call on when I need to." After the Marine Corps, he made a name for himself in stand-up comedy, and then eventually got his own sitcom, The Drew Carey Show and became a household name. He’s gone on to appear in multiple films, music videos, made for TV movies, and has hosted the game show The Price Is Right since 2007.
Manute Bol in 1984 playing college basketball.
Basketball player and political activist, Manute Bol was listed at an astounding 7 ft 7 in (2.31 m) tall, making him the tallest player in NBA history. Over the course of his career, Bol played on two college teams before moving on to four NBA teams. As a specialist player, he was considered among the best shot-blockers in the history of the sport.
Bol’s is the only player to have ever blocked more shots than he scored points and in terms of average blocked shots per game, he is second all-time in NBA history; ranking on at 15th on the career blocks list.
Here's a rare photo of Lynda Carter as Wonder Woman stopping a robbery (1975).
Pictured here is a rare shot from the 1970s Wonder Woman series starring Back Lynda Carter. Miss World America slipped into her star-spangled crime fighting ensemble and morphed into the all-American hero and icon Wonder Woman. It may not seem like much today, but back in the 1970s, women were standing up for gender equality.
It was still largely viewed that women had to be ‘delicate’ to be attractive, that strength and empowerment was for men or undesirable women… Lynda Carter smashed those ideas to bits. She was smart, strong, heroic, and still incredibly sexy. Even after her Wonder Woman days were over, Lynda continued her battle for justice off-screen as an advocate for LGBT rights and eventually, she also joined efforts in finding the cure for cancer.
Stewardesses of the 1960's.
This charming ensemble of ladies were airline stewardess of the 1960's and their sole purpose was to serve and make sure they looked exceptionally good while catering to passengers. Now being a server in one thing... being required to wear a uniform is not unheard of... however, airlines had a habit of objectifying women. These were airplanes, not "Hooters". So in 1971, the National Organization for Women (NOW) protested against the airlines, accused them of being “sexist and degrading to women”. They focused on the National Airlines with their “Fly Me” slogan in particular. Not only did they scold airline for treating stewardesses as objects, but they also demanded that men should be hired and portrayed in company advertising too.
Clint Eastwood in a tux, circa 1966.
Pictured here is Clint Eastwood looking rather handsome in his a tux back in 1966. His scruffy face here only proves he can pull off "shabby chic" like a pro. Award-winning actor, director, (and political figure), Clint Eastwood achieved success in the Western TV series Rawhide. He quickly rose to international fame with throughout the 1970s with various Western roles and then later played anti-hero cop Harry Callahan in the five Dirty Harry films throughout the 1970s and 1980s. His tendency to stick to ‘tough guy’ roles, sealed his fate as a cultural icon of masculinity.
At the beach in Iran, 1968.
Modern-day Iran couldn’t be any more different from the United States, but as images from 1960s Iran suggest, there was once a time when the streets of Tehran mirrored those of Los Angeles California or Miami, Florida. So just what exactly changed?
The Iranian Revolution of 1979 marks the changes not only within the country but with its relationship with the United States. The revolution of 1979 refers to the overthrow of the Pahlavi dynasty under Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi. The dramatic differences in their culture came from Jalal Al-e-Ahmad's idea of Gharbzadegi – which states Western culture is a plague to be eliminated.
Ozzy Osbourne in 1974.
Pictured here is a 26-year old Ozzy Osbourne back in 1974 while he was still a member of Black Sabbath. Ozzy was fired from the band in 1979 after long stints of not showing up to rehearsals and being under the influence of drugs and alcohol. Which makes perfect sense, until you realize all the members of Black Sabbath were on drugs and many sessions had to be canceled or stopped early because they were all too stoned to accomplish anything worth releasing.
Ozzy went on to release Blizzard of Ozz and it was one of the few best selling albums of the 1980s that achieved multi-platinum status (without having a Top 40 single to help it along). He’s had an immensely successful solo career and he’s done reunions with Black Sabbath since the breakup, but he's certainly out-shined his former bandmates and became known as the "Godfather of Heavy Metal.”
Audrey Hepburn in Paris, 1955.
As difficult as it may have been for America's Sweetheart of the 1950s, Audrey Hepburn, to rejected her own parents' ideologies, she did and that makes her even more admirable.
It would have been quite the scandal if anyone knew back in the 1950s that Hepburn's parents were Nazi sympathizers. Her father, Joseph, who abandoned her when she was very young was a member of the British Union of Fascists– as was her mother, Ella. After their divorce, Ella returned to Germany, attended Nuremberg rallies, and was even published in a fascist magazine, The Blackshirt. Joseph ended up being investigated by the British House of Commons because the funds he received to start a newspaper with, had ties to Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels. He was declared an enemy of the state and was imprisoned for the duration of the war.
Debbie Harry wearing a Patti Smith t-shirt and over-the-knee boots back in 1977.
Pictured here is Debbie Harry, better known as “Blondie,” rocking a Patti Smith t-shirt and knee-high boots back in 1977. The iconic Punk new wave singer is also considered the first female rapper to chart at number one in the United States and she has over 60 film roles and numerous television appearances on her resume.
"Blondie" was founded by Harry and guitarist Chris Stein but also comprised of members Clem Burke, Gary Valentine, and Jimmy Destri. They were pioneers of the punk scene but were noted for their eclectic mix of musical styles. They incorporated elements of disco, pop, and reggae. For this, they are credited with introducing mainstream American listeners to alternative elements of Rock and Roll in the late 1970’s. Blondie has sold 40 million records worldwide, is still active, and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2006.
Tom Cruise and Rebecca De Mornay relaxing on the set of Risky Business (1983).
Risky Business is a bit of an unconventional coming-of-age story. In it, a shy high school student (played by Cruise), beds a call girl and ends up turning his parent’s home into a brothel while they’re out of town.
And as rumor has it, the real-life Tom Cruise in the 80's, while very dedicated to his bible study, wasn’t too far off from his breakout role. Apparently, he had a line of young ladies outside of his dressing room who would leave looking ‘disheveled’ to say the least. He also became entangled in a steamy affair with his co-star Rebecca De Mornay.
Rita Hayworth publicity still from Gilda (1946). What a beauty!
Pictured here is the iconic beauty, Rita Hayworth posing in a publicity still for the 1946 Film Noir Gilda. For which she is most remembered for. In it, Rita Hayworth played the title role. The plot centers around a small-time gambler who is hired to work in a Buenos Aires casino. He learns that his ex-lover is now married to his employer.
Hayworth was the embodiment of Hollywood glamor, born to be a star. .She rose to prominence during the 1940s and quickly became one of the era's top stars. She appeared in a total of 61 films over 37 years. The press coined the term "love goddess" for her and labeled her the most glamorous screen idol of the 1940s. She was the top pin-up girl during World War II as far as GIs were concerned.
Glenn Danzig and Jerry Only of the Misfits hanging out at Club 57 in New York, 1980.
Pictured here are Glenn Danzig and Jerry Only of the Misfits hanging out at Club 57 in New York, back in 1980. This Misfits were famous for their unique blending punk rock and with horror film themes and imagery. So essentially, they were the progenitors of the horror punk subgenre. Glenn Danzig and Jerry Only were the only consistent members of the band, the original lineup back in 1977 consisted of Glenn Danzig, bassist Jerry Only, and drummer Manny Martínez. They also released several EPs and singles, and with Only's brother Doyle on guitar. After disbanding in 1983, Danzig went on to form Samhain and then Danzig.
The beautiful Kim Basinger wore her blazer well back in the day!
Pictured here is the lovely Kimila Ann "Kim" Basinger… why she didn’t go by Kimila, especially in her modeling days remains a mystery. After modeling in New York for some time, Basinger moved on to Los Angeles to embark on an acting career in 1976. She was cast in a remake of From Here to Eternity in 1979 before making her feature film debut in the 1981 drama Hard Country. She landed the role of Bond girl Domino Petachi in the 1983 film Never Say Never Again, opposite Sean Connery. She grew in prominence, playing in films such as The Natural (1984), 9½ Weeks (1986) and Tim Burton's blockbuster Batman (1989).
By 1997 she won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance as Lynn Bracken in the 1997 film L.A. Confidential. Her other films include I Dreamed of Africa (2000), 8 Mile (2002), The Door in the Floor (2004), Cellular (2004), The Nice Guys (2016), and her most recent Fifty Shades Darker(2017).
Bob Dylan checking out records. (1963)
Bob Dylan was one of the most significant American singer and songwriters of our time. He has performed alongside other rock legends such as Tom Petty, George Harrison, and The Grateful Dead. Even when goofing off the man had immense talent, that’s how The Traveling Wilburys formed, as a fortunate accident amongst musical geniuses.
George Harrison concocted to fill the B-side of a single for “This Is Love,” from his Cloud Nine album. It was customary to add a never-before-heard track to the flip side of a single. George just happened to be hanging out in with Jeff Lynne, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, and Roy Orbison, at Dylan’s studio when it dawned on him to record a jam session for his B-side. They nailed it. The concept of a full-scale collaborative album was the natural next step.
Swedish actress Anita Ekberg (1960's).
Pictured here is the lovely Kerstin Anita Marianne Ekberg back in the 1960s. As an actress, she is best known for her role as Sylvia in the Federico Fellini film La Dolce Vita (1960), but she got her start in the industry as a model. It wouldn’t be until the mid-50’s when she finally broke into films.
The Swedish starlet with her voluptuous physique and colorful private life was a favorite among the gossip magazines. She had highly publicized romances with leading men like Frank Sinatra, Tyrone Power, Yul Brynner, Rod Taylor, and Errol Flynn. For a time, she was even publicized as "Paramount's Marilyn Monroe".
Civil war veteran sharing stories with a captive audience in 1935.
The American Civil War was a defining moment in our nation’s history. It was fought from 1861 to 1865 when war finally broke out between the Union soldiers of the north and the confederate south after much controversy regarding slavery and state's rights in general.
The Northern victory resolved two issues: the first being whether the US was to be a dissolvable confederation of sovereign states or an indivisible nation with a sovereign national government.
The second issue dealt with whether or not this nation which declares all men were created equal, would continue to keep slaves. Thankfully the North won, slavery was abolished, and this nation was united.
Elvis Presley in 1960.
Elvis Presley was quite the ladies man as this photograph from the 1960s demonstrates. After his divorce from Priscilla was finalized, he began to get a little wild and was said to let some of the 'good looking' ladies that stalked his infamous mansion, Graceland, inside the house after hours. On one occasion, it was a reported 152 women!
The early popularizer of rockabilly fused country with rhythm and blues. His first RCA single “Heartbreak Hotel” was released in January of 1965 and wasted no time in becoming a number-one hit in the US.
Since then Elvis earned the largest presentation of gold and platinum record awards in history. The King has a total of 90 gold, 53 platinum and 25 multi-platinum album awards under his massive belt buckle.
Elvis Presley in Friedberg, Germany, 1958.
It was on March 24, 1958, when the King, Elvis Aron Presley entered the United States Army. He then spent three days at the Fort Chaffee, Arkansas, Reception Station. He left active duty at Fort Dix, New Jersey, on March 5, 1960, and received his discharge from the Army Reserve on March 23, 1964.
He then went through basic and advanced training and ended up serving as a member of two different armor battalions during his active military career. Presley was sent overseas to serve as a member of the 1st Medium Tank Battalion, 32d Armor in Germany from October 1, 1958, until March 2, 1960.
Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Peter Lawford and Joey Bishop outside Sands Casino, Las Vegas, 1960.
Pictured here is the legendary “Rat Pack”, consisting of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Peter Lawford and Joey Bishop outside Sands Casino, Las Vegas, 1960. The term “Rat Pack” was coined by the media to refer to the informal group of entertainers centered on the Las Vegas casino scene.
Sinatra, Martin, and Davis were regarded as the group's leaders so to speak, and the group also included Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall among others. The Rat Pack appeared together on stage and in films in the early 1960s, including the films Ocean's 11, Sergeants 3, and then Robin and the 7 Hoods; in which Bing Crosby replaced Lawford.
Funny Face! A 15 year-old Ellen Degeneres.
Here we have a very young, Ellen Degeneres, 15-years old to be exact. And possessing all those awkward and endearing qualities only those of that age can possess. Ellen launched her stand-up career started in the early 1980s, which included an appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson in 1986.
As an actress, DeGeneres has had her own television shows Ellen and the Ellen Degeneres Show. She has been in films such as Mr. Wrong (1996), appeared in EDtv (1999), and The Love Letter (1999), and provided the voice of Dory in the Pixar animated films Finding Nemo (2003) and Finding Dory (2016).
Gloria Estefan singing in late 1970's early 1980's. Beautiful voice...
Who could forget "Rhythm Is Gonna Get You", "Get On Your Feet", "Here We Are", and her initial 1985 breakthrough hit, "Conga". The Cuban-American singer and songwriter was steadily pumping out chart-topping international hits left and right.
In addition to winning seven Grammy Awards, Gloria Estefan has received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and Las Vegas Walk of Fame. In 2015, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for her contributions to American music. She is also being awarded in December of 2017 with the Kennedy Center Honors for her contributions to American Culture Life.
Good Morning, Vietnam Robin Williams won a Golden Globe for Best Actor.
Robin Williams won many awards over the span of his brilliant career, but it's probably safe to say nothing will ever feel quite as good for any actor as that very first win. In Williams' case, his first was in 1979 for lead comedy actor for “Mork and Mindy.”
He took home an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Good Will Hunting (1997). He won six Golden Globe Awards, including Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy for his roles in Good Morning, Vietnam (1987), The Fisher King (1991) and Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), along with the Cecil B. DeMille award in 2005.
A glimpse of 1967 Chicago.
The Chicago blizzard of 1967, left the city and its surrounding suburbs covered in 23 inches of snow. It was the largest single snowfall in the city's history. Thousands were stranded whether it be in their offices at work or in their schools. There was an estimated 50,000 cars abandoned and 800 Chicago Transit Authority buses.
But in south suburban Markham, four schools with a combined 650 students camped out in libraries and gymnasiums and made the best of a bad situation. Buses couldn’t get through the snow so it was like a massive campout. "They are all enjoying themselves," Supt. J. Lewis Weingarner later told the Chicago Tribune. "This is a night that will go down in many memory books."
Hanging out at the record store, 1957.
Ah yes, here we have a glimpse of the days when music could also be a tangible item; a round, vinyl, tangible item.
The ability to download any song instantly from iTunes is amazing however, it completely robs music lovers the experience of music stores. There is nothing like immersing yourself in stacks of records. Not to mention the ambiance; floor to ceiling original album cover artwork, quirky but knowledgeable staff, fun novelty items. 8-Tracks, cassette tapes and eventually C.D.s filled the racks. Then boom; one by one they began to close up shop as music went digital.
An American soldier keeps a constant reminder of his girlfriend back home, with his helmet band filled with her photograph - Vietnam, 1968
This photograph was taken on May 1, 1968, during the Vietnam War. Stationed in Cu Chi, South Vietnam, this American soldier misses his girlfriend so much his helmet band filled with her photograph. No doubt her photograph served as a touchstone for him, providing comfort in those terrifying times. All of the soldiers sent to war would have benefited from some source that would provide a constant reminder of home and all they had to stay strong and alive for. Meanwhile, back home in the states, an entire generation was protesting the conflict and demanding the safe return of the young Americans sent over.
Happy Birthday Michael Jackson. (1968)
Michael Jackson was born on August 29th in 1958 and was the 8th out of the 10 Jackson children. When Michael was just 5 years old, his father thought it would be a good idea to put his 5 sons in a singing group as he believed that they had talent. From a very young age, Michael showed great range and was made the lead singer of the group. After winning a number of talent shows, their father entered them into 2 talent shows, one at Chicago’s Regal Theater and one at Harlem’s Apollo Theater, which they both won.
After that, Gladys Knight took the groups record to Motown only to be rejected. After impressing Bobby Taylor, the group was eventually signed to Motown on March 11th 1969. They then moved to Hollywood and after opening for Dianna Ross and the Supremes, they released their first single “I Want You Back” in October of that year which went straight to number one on the billboards. That was just the beginning of Michael Jackson’s career.
Inside a music store at the mall, circa 1989.
Long gone are the days of the quaint vintage record store, but so are the days of hanging out at the larger, often corporate music stores in shopping malls. Much like the record stores before, the music store offered people (mostly teens) a place to go look at all the c.d.s out, pre-order upcoming new releases, and score a bitchin new blacklight poster for their room. But alas, it is no more. Now iTunes has taken over and all we have left to remind us of these good ol’ days is the movie Empire Records.
Jimi Hendrix performing in Bakersfield, California, 1968.
It was in 1966 when Jimi signed with his first manager and landed three songs on the UK top ten hits. Before he knew it, Jimi Hendrix was a household name, landing major events. In 1969 he headlined Woodstock and became the highest paid performer in the world. Now his name synonymous with blues and the guitar. Hendrix experienced all the facets of achieving mega-stardom, despite only being active in the music business for less than a decade. Tragically, on September 18, 1970, He swallowed a handful of sleeping pills and never woke up. The overdose was accidental, Jimi had been drinking and habitually popped pills with little regard to instructions. He didn’t realize half a Vesparax was enough to get eight hours sleep and he took about 18 times the recommended dosage.
Mattel gave us this toy in 1964. How many of you actually were able to get this work
Mattel bestowed this gift upon us back in 1964 and it still exists today, albeit it evolved but the fundamental concept remains intact. What’s now simply known as “Creepy Crawlers” as of the 1990s was originally the Thingmaker (pictured here). You squirted Plasti-Goop into molds, popped them into the Thingmaker (which was basically a hotplate hybrid) and out popped rubbery creatures to first burn yourself with and then torment your younger siblings with. Brilliant!
In this form, it was discontinued by 1978, only to reemerge in the 1990s with a few more safety precautions in place. The whole pouring super-hot goop into molds aspect was replaced with a safer injectable goop method. Also, there's an oven door that now keeps them secure until everything is all cooled down. So it's essentially an Easy-Bake Oven that cooks non-toxic plastic goop instead of brownies.
Mel Brooks zany spoof of Star Wars was the comedy, Spaceballs (1987).
Spaceballs was co-written, produced and directed by Mel Brooks who also acts in it. It also stars Bill Pullman, John Candy, and Rick Moranis. It also features Daphne Zuniga, Dick Van Patten, and the voice of Joan Rivers. The comedic science fiction classic film parodies the original Star Wars trilogy, as well as other sci-fi franchises including Star Trek, Alien, and the Planet of the Apes films. MGM released it in 1987 and while it initially received mixed reviews it developed a cult following and remains a beloved favorite to this very day.
Moe Howard and Larry Fine of The Three Stooges in 1973.
Pictured here are members of the legendary slapstick team known as The Three Stooges. The trio consisted of characters Moe Howard, whose real name was Moses Horwitz; Larry Fine was born Louis Fienberg, and Curly Howard’s real name was Jerome Lester Horwitz.
Looking back, ‘The Three Stooges’ may seem like nothing more than mindless entertainment but they turned vaudeville slapstick into an art form. They inspired many comedic actors and writers, their influence can be seen in just about every form of comedy no matter the medium.
Muhammad Ali in 1974 standing with his winnings.
They don’t call him “The Greatest” for nothing. Here, Ali stands in a vault with (literally) a pile of money at his feet. He rightfully earned it all in the boxing ring while he floated like a butterfly but stung like a bee. It was October 30, 1974, when 32-year-old Muhammad Ali knocked out champ George Forman and became the heavyweight champion of the world (for the second time). It happened during the eighth round of the match in Kinshasa, Zaire, appropriately titled “Rumble in the Jungle.”
Ali was representative for African pride during the 60s Civil Rights Movement. He was against the Vietnam War, refused to be conscripted into the military, and was arrested for draft evasion. and stripped of the boxing titles he earned. This win in Zaire made him the second dethroned champ in history to successfully regain his belt.
Paul McCartney taking a break while filming the Strawberry Fields Forever promo, 1967.
It was on January 30th, 1967, when the Beatles began working on a promotional film for their forthcoming single Strawberry Fields Forever, The song was written a year earlier by John Lennon while filming How I Won the War in Spain. He said it was inspired by memories of playing in the garden of Strawberry Field, a Salvation Army children's home, not far from where he grew up in Liverpool.
The Strawberry Fields shoot took place at Knole Park in Sevenoaks, Kent and was directed by Peter Goldmann (as was the Penny Lane promo film). Goldmann, a Swedish television director was recommended to The Beatles by their close friend Klaus Voormann.
Princess Diana and Harry, who is dressed in a miniature Parachute Regiment uniform (July, 1986).
The Lady Diana Spencer was just 19-years old and working as a Kindergarten teacher when 32-year-old Prince Charles announced his intentions to marry her. She had known Prince Charles and his family her whole life. She is the daughter of the eighth Earl Spencer, who served as an officer in the royal household so they literally grew up together. In fact, she and Charles are actually 16th cousins once removed. So sweet, young “Shy Di,” as the British press loved to call her, grew up to become the Princess of Wales and one of the most adored women in the world.
So cute! A little girl in her car, 1947.
This adorable little big-city driver was lucky enough to have this cool custom car crafter for her to ride along the streets of New York in. The photo was taken in 1947 by street photographer Fred Stein.
Stein pioneering work with the hand-held camera captured some of the earliest images of everyday people. His images captured striking psychological and cultural insights. Even his portrait work is seemingly infused with the personalities of the subjects and the era. Stein died at 58-years old in 1967. But his work lives on, appearing in newspapers, magazines, exhibits, and books throughout the world.
Telly Sevalas 1960's. Who loves ya baby
Noted for his deep, gravelly voice and his bald head, singer and character actor, Aristotelis "Telly" Savalas’ career spanned four decades. His film credits films include The Young Savages (1961), The Greatest Story Ever Told (1965), Battle of the Bulge (1965), The Dirty Dozen (1967), The Scalphunters (1968), and he played supervillain Ernst Stavro Blofeld in the James Bond film On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969). He was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in 1962, for his performance in Birdman of Alcatraz. His film career continued through the 1970s and he also had a successful run in the television crime drama Kojak from 1973 to 1978), co-starring his real-life brother George Savalas.
The Godfather was showing in theaters in 1972.
Francis Ford Coppola brought this mob drama, based on Mario Puzo's novel of the same name to life. The story focuses on the Italian-American crime family of Don Vito Corleone which is played by Marlon Brando. The film also stars Al Pacino and Diane Keaton and is widely regarded as one of the greatest films of all time, and is certainly the best mob drama in cinema history.
It was Pacino's role as a heroin addict in the 1971 film The Panic in Needle Park, that caught the Coppola's attention. Coppola then went ahead and passed up actors Jack Nicholson, Robert Redford, and Warren Beatty in favor of casting newcomer Al Pacino in 1972 as Michael Corleone, and no one could have done it better.
The great Pretender! Rocker Chrissie Hynde (1979)
Pictured here is rocker and founder of The Pretenders, Chrissie Hynde. The original band consisted of initiator and main songwriter Chrissie Hynde (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), James Honeyman-Scott (lead guitar, backing vocals, keyboards), Pete Farndon (bass guitar, backing vocals), and Martin Chambers (drums, backing vocals, percussion).
Others came and went but Hynde remained the only constant member of the band throughout its entire history. She also worked on side projects, releasing a number of songs with other musicians including Frank Sinatra, Cher, and UB40. In 2005, Hynde and The Pretenders were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
The legendary muscle man Carroll Shelby and his car in the late 60's.
Pictured here is the legendary automotive designer, race driver, and the creator of Shelby American Inc., Carroll Hall Shelby. Shelby is best known (especially now after Gone in 60 seconds) for his work with the Ford Motor Company on the AC Cobra and Mustang (later known as Shelby Mustangs).
He participated in a total of eight World Championship races and several non-championship races. In 1956 and 1957 he was Sports Illustrated's driver of the year. He later recalled his amateur day, where he initially raced a friend's MG TC and borrowed Cad-Allards. He also credited the combination of the small English Allard and American V-8 power as inspiring his creation of the AC Cobra.
Weird Al, valedictorian of Lynwood High School, 1975
Some may be surprised to know that famous parody artist Weird Al graduated as valedictorian of his senior class and that he went on to earn a bachelor’s in Architecture from California Polytechnic State University.
Since his first-aired comedy song in 1976, he's sold more than 12 million albums. He has recorded over 150 songs, both parody and original, and he has done over a thousand live performances. As far as awards go, Weird Al's work has earned him four Grammy Awards in addition to another 11 nominations. He has achieved worldwide success but in the United States, he has four gold records and six platinum records.
A young, good-looking John Goodman before he was in Roseanne. (1981)
Wow! Get a look at John Goodman back in 1981, long before becoming a household name through his role as Dan Conner on the hit series Roseanne. Remember him back then? You might recognize him from that old Foot Locker commercial where he struts in claiming to play pretty much every sport there is and wants to see every popular athletic shoe on the market.
And even better, was the California First Bank Commercial where he was this weird aspiring toy store owner with all these toys in his attic that he would talk to. Then he takes some of them to the bank with him to get a business loan. Go ahead and look, they’re on YouTube.
What was your favorite song from the group Bread (1971)?
The American soft rock band known as Bread, placed 13 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 chart between the years of 1970 and 1977. For those wondering, they named themselves Bread after getting stuck in traffic behind a Wonder Bread truck.
Each member of Bread could theoretically be a “one man band”, as they could all play pretty much everything. The group consisted of lead singer David Gates, and musicians Jimmy Griffin, Robb Royer, Mike Botts, and Larry Knechtel.
Bread virtually invented the soft rock genre back in the early Seventies. Their most memorable hits are: "Make It With You," "If," "Baby I'm-a Want You" and "Everything I Own". Unfortunately tensions grew amongst the band, as is always the way in rock. They disbanded, gave a reunion a shot, then folded for good in 1977.