by Larry Lehmer
How dancing teenagers took over America and Dick Clark took over rock & roll
American Bandstand, one of the longest-running shows in television history, spotlighted well-scrubbed, properly dressed dancing teenagers on every show. They mirrored the show’s perpetually youthful host, Dick Clark, who spun the music Clark often described as the “soundtrack to our lives.”
These are the memories Clark carefully nurtured as he crafted the alternate teen universe of Bandstandland during the formative years of American Bandstand, from 1952 to 1964. Bandstandland was a mythical creation by Clark, who saw the show as a springboard to immense wealth rather than a tribute to teen culture.
Clark was a relentless businessman who once had ownership stakes in 33 corporations, most created by him. He created rules to keep black teens off the show, promoted the teens that danced on the show when it served his purposes and banned them when it didn’t and effectively turned American Bandstand into his own personal infomercial.
Bandstandland sheds light on the little-known backstory of the TV program that was America’s top-rated daytime television show in its heyday and enjoyed a 37-year run from 1952 to 1989.
Page Count: 382
Trim Size: 6 x 9
Publish Date: April 19, 2019
Imprint: Sunbury Press
HISTORY / United States / 20th Century
MUSIC / Genres & Styles / Dance
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Popular Culture