Calling ABC's "American Bandstand" television show a phenomenon almost seems insufficient. "I Love Lucy" may be playing somewhere in the world at any given moment, but "Bandstand" outlasted Lucy's entire career, lasting 33 years as a popular culture yardstick. Before MTV, AB was where America's teens went to learn - not just the new songs but the new styles and the new dances. So closely did two different generations identify with the dancers on this king of dance shows that these kids became stars in their own right, sometimes without having ever said a word on camera.
Legendary host Dick Clark may have been billed as "the oldest living teenager" (a title the late Rufus Thomas also claimed), but in interviews, he's made it clear that he was simply the middleman, looking for whatever was hip or about to be so and then presenting it to the nation's youth in a palatable format. Ed Sullivan may have gotten the Beatles and Elvis, but Dick Clark and his surrogate children got absolutely everyone else, and while Ed was your Mom and Dad's gateway to pop culture, Dick and American Bandstand were yours. And given the increasingly fragmented, compartmentalized state of entertainment, no show will ever have such an impact again.
- The Museum of Broadcast Communications: American Bandstand A very good outline of the show's rise, eventual fall, and overall impact from this museum of television culture.
- FiftiesWeb: American Bandstand A wonderful tribute to the show, lots of fun facts, and info on the regulars! See what they're up to today!
- The History of Rock n' Roll: American Bandstand Pictures Pictures, yes - lots of B&W shots you can't find anywhere else on the net. But click on any of these vintage photos and you can also learn about different aspects of the show!
- TV Tome: American Bandstand This online guide to classic TV shows features an episode guide and a cast listing for the series.
- Boomer's Fifties Teen Idol Magazine An actual "Bandstand" dancer tells his own story... from fan to cast member!
- Patsified! Patsy on American Bandstand From a Patsy Cline fan site comes this recollection of Cline's 1962 AB appearance. Includes "lost" stills taken from a TV set!
- American Dreams: Special Features This section of the official NBC "American Dreams" site features various multimedia artifacts from AB's salad days.
- "American Bandstand" and West Philadelphia: A Teaching Experience at West Philadelphia High School One teacher's attempt to get her students to relate "Bandstand" to Philadelphia's own history. Fascinating revelations about the show!
- ClassicThemes.com Descriptions of the four different theme songs used by the show during its long run.
- <A href="http://erclk.about.com/?zi=1/QQM Bandstand: Dick Clark and the Making of a Rock 'n' Roll Empire</A> The most detailed book about the show and its influence. Compare prices and order here!