A big thanks to Mr Planet Mondo for finding this. For years I have kept an unlabelled vhs tape with me wherever I go – from bedsit, from bar to street to bookie (no not really that was from Up The Junction by Squeeze but it’s such a great line!) to shared flat, to another shared flat, to one more flat and finally to my own house. We don’t have a vhs player that works in the house anymore despite them being un-thrown away and languishing in a cupboard somewhere. It has Tom Jones 72 Special DO NOT ERASE written on it in furious pencil. It has survived and I really must get it transferred to dvd before it gets too old and worn to play properly. Like a sad geek I have trawled the internet into the early hours on many an evening to find the whole programme and have found almost all of it apart from this – which is one of the highlights of the special alongside Tom’s duet with Ella Fitzgerald which I posted up last month. Then of course there was Little Richard, Joe Cocker and Johnny Cash. But Sammy Davis Jr’s version of Stevie Wonder’s For Once In My Life is perfect in every way. I love his voice, his outfit, his fag (he must have put the drink down just out of shot on that occasion), the dancers (the one to his left is/was his wife Altoise) and of course the vertical stripes – who said horizontal stripes are unflattering?
Music and performances like this make me happy.