History Rocks!

I hope you caught History Rocks: the 60s last night on the History Channel. Man, talk about the best documentary about that tumultuous decade... Pulling no punches and never resorting to cliché, it covers the 60s using the music as the soundtrack in a way that I've never seen before. The way it was back then...

Is it cliché to say that I felt like I was there again? From the despair and horror of the Viet Nam war ("A Whiter Shade of Pale" playing beneath footage from the war with excerpts of letters home from the soldiers inserted as text boxes), to the humor of the Volkswagen commercials ("I'm Your Venus"), this two-part chapter (they're also planning 70s and 80s chapters) had me at "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country". Hell, the funniest part was the section about the nearly 200 assassination attempts our CIA plotted against Castro ("Feelin' Alright"). That all of those governmental heads are dead and Castro is still alive is not lost on the makers of this excellent series.

I've never wanted to buy a documentary about the Sixties. I was there. My eldest son was conceived in Haight-Ashbury for crying out loud. But this one, I MUST own.

I'm looking forward to the next two!

Apologies to Tom Brokaw's 1968. I watched it Sunday night and liked it, but outside of his personal interjections, it was the same old stuff. And it had a definite feel of someone who was on the fence, so to speak. Sort of a conservative liberal's view, a kid who wanted desperately to rip off his tie and take the joint that was offered him, but couldn't for fear of losing his job as a news anchor. Well, we all made our choices, bless us.

Here's the History Channel's blurb on the series:
Take a whirlwind look at the 60s, the 70s, the 80s and Sex through outrageous characters, incredible events and memorable music. HISTORY ROCKS pairs unforgettable news stories with blockbuster songs from the same era. Each segment combines the thrills of a music video with the power of a documentary to create a visceral and cinematic experience. Each hour contains eight mini-documentary music videos that focus on the history of the decade. The program takes a popular song, a known radio hit, and explores a key historical person, place or event that clearly ties-in to that song (ex. Blue Oyster Cult's haunting classic, "Don't Fear The Reaper" paired with the tragic events of Jonestown). These visually exciting "mini-documentaries" are created out of stills, footage, expert interview bites — all set to an inspiring song that immediately takes you back to that era. HISTORY ROCKS balances a young, energetic "pop" style with real history creating a dynamic, engaging visual experience of American history.
Don't miss the next one.