Friday, April 12, 2024

The !!!! Beat

In 1966 an amazing TV show called “The !!!! Beat” debuted featuring a wide array of live R&B music by black artists like Freddie King, Lou Rawls, Esther Phillips, Etta James, Otis Redding and so many more.

Hosted by legendary Nashville DJ “Hoss” Allen, who was immersed in black culture and music as a kid and played blues, R&B and gospel on his WLAC Nashville radio show in the 50s, “The !!!! Beat” featured an amazing list of guests:

Guests included: Otis Redding, who hosted the final episode, Little Milton, Esther Phillips, Joe Tex, Etta James, Lattimore Brown, Roscoe Shelton, Carla Thomas, Freddie King, Barbara Lynn, Johnny Taylor, The Radiants, Louis Jordan, The Mighty Hannibal, Clarence 'Frogman' Henry, Robert Parker, Joe Simon, Mitty Collier, Jamo Thomas, Z. Z. Hill, Lou Rawls, Bobby Hebb, Willie Mitchell, Don Bryant, The Ovations, The Bar-Kays, Percy Sledge, Garnet Mimms, and Sam & Dave all appeared.

That is quite the list. This is just one season of the show!

Sadly it lasted just that one season, which is unsurprising considering the race climate at the time — but due to the magic of Youtube, DVDs, and devoted fans, nearly all the episodes are available to watch today. For now.

Recently I featured a Freddie King video from the show — here’s one more.

“I'm Torn Down”

Esther Phillips, “I Could Have Told You”

There’s so much more, and I encourage all to investigate this YouTube channel.