How many pre-teen early evenings did I spend wedged in a blue bean bag in front of the TV watching that spectacle of pop music and elaborately choreographed dance routines known as Solid Gold? At the time, it was...I'm trying to refrain from cursing these days...the shiznit. Dionne Warwick was the first host and always seemed like she actually enjoyed the music, and at the time I wasn't attuned to the fact that she was a fading star. Marilyn McCoo came later, joined by Andy Gibb and then a progression of smooth-talking guys. Nina Blackwood from MTV was even in there somewhere.
The show generally had some good live performances. And by "live" I mean live bodies lip syncing on stage. Rick Springfield, Madonna, Lionel Richie...I still have vivid memories of Prince being on the show.
But when it comes down to it, it was the dancers that set it apart. Most of them are just a blur of lycra and sequins, but one dancer stands out -- Darcel. She was the lead dancer, the head cheerleader of sorts. She seemed to get all the best dances and even got to talk every once in a while. She looked like she was 6 feet tall, all legs, and all that hair, which she often wore her hair in one ponytail. How many girls sat glued to their televisions on Saturday nights, dreaming about going to Hollywood and making it big as a Solid Gold Dancer?
Cheesy? Undeniably so. But if you are of a certain age and have a penchant for pop music, just thinking about Solid Gold gives you a warm, fuzzy feeling, like leg warmers on a cold morning...