Vintage Black Glamour
On Tuesday, March 10, 2015 at 6pm, I will be speaking and signing books at the Katie Murphy Amphitheatre at the Museum at FIT in New York City. This will be my last New York City signing for a while as I will be doing my best to expand to other cities this year. If you'd like to get your book, stop by FIT's book store at 227 W. 27th street or call them (212) 217-5690. Register at this link - and thank you!:
Missy Elliott’s Super Bowl takeover reminded me of this: If she acts, this could be a great role for her. Gladys Bentley (1907-1960) She was a 16-year-old renegade when she arrived in Harlem in the 1920s and was an immediate success singing at rent parties and clubs. Unapologetically masculine onstage, she was known for her signature top hat and tails and her gleefully obscene set drew large crowds to her shows at The Clam House, the famous gay club, and other hot Harlem venues of the day.
Happy New Year to my dear Vintage Black Glamour readers and friends! I am a writer but…. I do not have adequate words to express my gratitude and the elation that I feel about everyone who purchased my book this year - and supported VBG from the (social media) beginning in 2011. Thank you SO much and Happy New Year (from The Three Degrees and me)!!
Ja’Net DuBois is shown in 1964 at the time she shared the Broadway stage with none other than Sammy Davis in “Golden Boy.” The Brooklyn-born diva co-wrote and sang the theme from “The Jeffersons” and of course, you know that she was “Willona” on “Good Times” in the 1970s. She is also a co-founder (with Danny Glover and Ayuko Babu) of the Pan African Film & Arts Festival. Photo: John D. Kisch/Separate Cinema Archive/Getty Images.
Dorothy Dandridge was born 92 years ago today in Cleveland, Ohio. You know I’m having an off (quiet!) Sunday if it takes me this long to put her up - but here she is in one of my favorite photos from my book, Vintage Black Glamour. I saw this picture in the Schomburg library at least ten years ago and KNEW it had to be in my book: Ms. Dandridge taking a dance lesson in the 1950s with Russian-born dance instructor Olga Lunick in Hollywood.
Tony Orlando and Dawn: Tony Orlando, Telma Hopkins and Joyce Vincent Wilson in the early 1970s. Their best known hit was “Tie a Yellow Ribbon ‘Round the Ole Oak Tree” in 1973 and they starred in a short-lived variety show the next year on CBS. Telma Hopkins would go on to a successful acting career on various shows including, of course, “Family Matters.” Photo: Joel Brodsky/Corbis.
Geoffrey Holder (1930-2014) was born in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad and arrived in New York in 1952. He would go on to win a Guggenheim for painting in 1957 and was a principal dancer at the Metropolitan Opera Ballet. In 1975, he won two Tonys in the same evening for directing and choreographing “The Wiz.” He is best known to most as the “Un-cola Man” in the 1970s 7-Up commercials and the 1992 film “Boomerang." Photo: Bradley Smith/Corbis.
"Vintage Black Glamour, a hefty, handsome new coffee-table book, is full of such stories, with photographs of those shunned by the spotlight, as well as idiosyncratic, unseen shots of those who weren’t. It begins with an 1891 picture of French horsewoman Selika Lazevski, and ends in 1981 with Sister Sledge." Very pleased with this Vintage Black Glamour feature in The Guardian's Observer Sunday magazine.
From The Guardian: "Peter Jackson, December 2, 1889. Born in 1860 in St Croix, then the Danish West Indies, Jackson was a boxing champion who spent long periods of time touring Europe. In England, he staged the famous fight against Jem Smith at the Pelican Club in 1889. In 1888 he claimed the title of Australian heavyweight champion. Photo: Hulton Archive/Getty Images.
A member of the African Choir, London Stereoscopic Company, 1891. From The Guardian: The African Choir were a group of young South African singers that toured Britain between 1891 and 1893. At some point during their stay, they had group and individual portraits made on plate-glass negatives. That long-lost series of photographs, unseen for 120 years, is the dramatic centrepiece of an illuminating new exhibition called Black Chronicles II. Photo: Hulton Archive/Getty Images