To commemorate Soul Train's 40-year anniversary, VH1 has premiered a "rockumentary" titled "Soul Train The Hippest Trip in America", a 90-minute documentary highlighting the creation and development of tv's longest running syndicated program. Narrated by Terrence Howard, the documentary features interviews with show creator and host Don Cornelius, as well as a bevy of familiar faces from the early Soul Train days. One of the great aspects of the program is that it gives a real behind-the-scenes look at of one of the country's most popular shows. It also gives the audience a rare look, and I think appreciation for the talent and innovation of Don Cornelius. Cornelius is an often overlooked pioneer in the Black entertainment world. What Cornelius accomplished was literally unheard of at the time of Soul Train's inception in 1970.
And as great as is to learn about Soul Train's history, it's also really fun to watch some of its' vintage performances. There have been many great ones over the years, but there was one that stands out in the Soul Train "Best Of" category. It's Al Green circa 1974 singing, "Here I Am". After seeing a clip of this performance on the Soul Train special, I was thrilled to find the full version courtesy of Youtube. It was so good, I had to share. Al Green, broken arm and all absolutely kills it. It's hard to find soul and passion better than this. Enjoy!!
To see "Soul Train The Hippest Trip in America", check your local listings for VH1.