rock n' roll royalty
James Brown and Mick Jagger circa 1964

(Carpinteria, CA)   Brought out of the vault and finally released to DVD after 50 years of sitting on the shelf, the star-filled rock n’ roll 1964 concert film, “The T.A.M.I. Show” will be screened Saturday, August 23 at 7:15pm at the Plaza Playhouse Theater, Carpinteria. The Playhouse will use the one-time only event to raise funds for the purchase of a real ‘big screen’ for the intimate theatre.

The show, conceived as a live-concert-to-tape-to-film event, was shot over a two-day period in late October 1964 at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium. It featured many of the greatest rock n’ roll acts of the day: Chuck Berry, The Rolling Stones, The Beach Boys, Diana Ross and The Supremes, Lesley Gore, Marvin Gaye, James Brown and the Famous Flames, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, plus Jan and Dean (who were the hosts). Roster of entertainers also included: The Barbarians, Gerry and The Pacemakers and Billy J. Kramer and The Dakotas. The house band for the T.A.M.I. show was the famous group of studio musicians called “The Wrecking Crew.” In the audience were students from nearby junior and senior high schools who had been given free tickets—including future director John Landis and actor/singer David Cassidy.

This one-time only presentation of the “T.A.M.I. Show” will serve as a fundraiser for the non-profit theater, which is on track to purchase a new, much wider screen for the venue. It will be 20’x12’ and allow for the showing of many of the great wide screen classics of the past 60 years as well as contemporary films.

“It needs to be electrically retractable so we can use the stage, it’s a lot more expensive that your typical static screen,” said Peter Bie, Film and TV Coordinator for the theater, who also serves as secretary on the board of directors. “We’ve received a generous pledge of $10,000 toward the new screen, but our challenge is to match that amount by the December 31, 2014 deadline this year.”

Wondering what the acronym “T.A.M.I.” means? Alternately known as ‘Teenage Awards Music International’ or ‘Teen Age Music International,’ the film was released to theaters on December 29, 1964. It later suffered a serious alteration after the Beach Boys requested more money for their sequence. When the producers declined, the group demanded their set be cut from the film.

“After it was taken off the theatrical circuit, it seemed to just disappear and over the years took on rather mythical proportions, becoming known as the best rock n’ roll concert movie most people have never seen…or heard of,” said Bie.

It took many years of working out all the legal rights, but Dick Clark Productions was finally able to issue a fully restored DVD in 2010 — with the Beach Boys set intact. This is also the version that will be screened at the Plaza Theater in Carpinteria.

“One of the most amazing things about this film is its clarity,” noted Bie, “which is due to the use of a whiz bang technology of the day called Electronovision–a very early type of higher definition process for recording to videotape. And then it was transferred to 35mm film.” Bie said the concert will look great on the theater’s current screen, and added, “It will really rock on our sound system.”

To provide an insider’s look at how it all came together, the Plaza Theater has invited the film’s producer/director, Steve Binder, to give a first person account of what was involved to gather all the acts for a show that would require two days of performances; the best of each then edited into the final cut.

Binder will take the stage at 7:15pm to give some background on “The T.A.M.I. Show” which will roll at 7:30. He’ll return for the full Q&A after the screening so stick around. He’ll also have on hand copies of his 2008 book, “68 at 40,” a retrospective about the making and airing of the highly rated Elvis Presley “Comeback Special” which he produced and directed in 1968.

“This is a great way to end the summer with such a ‘feel good’ movie”, said Bie. “If you lived through the mid ‘60s, this will send you right back; if you’re too young to know the era, this is a great way to see what was happening, musically, at the time. Keep in mind this show was recorded just seven months after the Beatles hit America’s shores. Even the Rolling Stones appear a ‘bit wet behind the ears.’ It’s a piece of musical history never to be replicated and Steve Binder was there to see it all happen. Imagine the stories he’s got to tell.”  With the new film biopic of James Brown about to hit theaters on August 1, Bie said to see that movie and then “come see the real deal in the “T.A.M.I.” Show. “You’ll leave the theater amazed at Brown’s electrifying stage performance!”

411::  Tickets for the “T.A.M.I. Show” are $20 each and available for purchase now on the theaters’ website: www.plazatheatercarpinteria.com. Doors open at 6:30pm and tickets (if available) can be purchased at the box office the night of the show. Located at 4916 Carpinteria Ave. the theatre is wheelchair accessible. Phone number for more info: 805.684.6380 or e-mail us at: info@plazatheatercarpinteria.com. Along with the typical fare of popcorn, soft drinks and candy, the theater also serves beer and wine at the concession stand for your pleasure.