Senior Year, 1976: Bicentennial Boogie Fever
by Chuck Eddy | June 4, 2012
First off, let me mention what an awesome idea it was to stick the U.S. of A.'s 200th birthday almost smack-dab in the middle of the silliest and most shameless (and - let's not mince words here - probably best) decade for pop culture ever. Independence Days come a dime a dozen, but never before or since has the party managed to last the entire year - non-stop detonation from cherry bombs bursting in air and afternoon-delight skyrockets in flight! And all through the Year of the Cat (as Al Stewart called it), one word towered over the rest, aesthetic-wise: Boogie!
And by that, I mean both kinds: The disco species practiced by your boogie-fevered Sylvers and your boogie man K.C.'s Sunshine Band, and the rock variety that the boogie singer in Wild Cherry left behind when he opted to play that funky music as white boys do. For in 1976, many a white boy did just that: David Bowie, Boz Scaggs, Steve Miller. Though back in those days, almost all hard rock, no matter how glammed and glittered-out, from platinum-plated superheroes like Kiss and Aerosmith on down to high-school parking lot rumors like Starz and Angel and the Runaways, still had some boogie in it: Notably, Thin Lizzy, despite being Irish, knew the bicentennial summer was imminent now that the boys were back in town.
Anyway, whether you were there or not, here's a playlist to celebrate with: the Bay City Rollers winning Saturday night's spelling bee, Peter Frampton coming alive with his talkbox, classic rock, classic funk, the Welcome Back Kotter theme, and CB radio rap cheese. Mercy sakes alive, looks like we got us a convoy. Those cars never seem to stop comin,' so keep those rags and machines hummin'. This ain't the summer of love, but it is a rollercoaster of love. Say what?