Synopsis by Mark Deming
In 1964, producer and entrepreneur Bill Sargent and television director Steve Binder staged the Teen-Age Music International Show, a concert event which would showcase some of the biggest rock and pop acts of the day; Binder and his camera crew captured the proceedings on video tape (using a then-innovative high definition process called Electronovision), and the results were transferred to film and released to theaters as The T.A.M.I. Show. While The Beatles were occupied with making their own movie, the roster of performers otherwise reads like a "who's who" of early-60's rock -- original guitar hero Chuck Berry, three of Motown's biggest stars (Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles and The Supremes), two leading British Invasion acts (Gerry and the Pacemakers and Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas), garage rock legends The Barbarians, teen angst goddess Leslie Gore, and surf music pioneers The Beach Boys and Jan & Dean (the latter of whom also served as hosts). Closing the show is a veritable "Battle of the Bands" between two of the most exciting stage acts in rock history, James Brown and his Famous Flames (Brown's dancing still inspires awe decades later) and The Rolling Stones (who look young and green, but are already blessed with a near-deadly charisma). Regarded by many aficionados as one of the very best rock and roll movies ever made, The T.A.M.I. Show was more talked about than seen within a few years of its original release; legal action by The Beach Boys caused their appearance to be cut from most archival prints, and music rights issues prevented the film from being released on home video until a fully restored DVD edition (including the Beach Boys performance) finally arrived in 2010.
music, rock, show