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SCOPITONE

The Cheetah where Jimi Hendrix played as a member of Curtis Knight & the Squires in 1966 had a Scopitone 16 mm film jukebox installed.1 It's of course not 100% certain that the machine was there (and working) on the dates that Jimi was at the club but it WAS there in 1966 so I've collected a few bits and pieces about Scopitone here. Just for a bit of genuine 1966 vibe - and also simply because it's good fun.

The Journal Herald in Dayton reported in October 1965 that the machines "hold 36 self-rewinding film cartridges, each running at least three minutes. The full color shows cost 25 cents a play and have such stars as Joi Lansing, January Jones, Debbie Reynolds, Kay Starr, Jane Morgan, Viv Damone and the like."

Here's a short documentary clip on YouTube, "Vernacular image collectors Nicholas Osborn and Ron Slattery show off their collection of Scopitone films and their Scopitone jukebox":

Here's a clip that shows how the machine actually worked:



Here's my favourite Scopitone-clip (so far),"The Web Of Love" S-1057 (1966) by Joi Lansing. Whose real name was Joy Rae Brown - quite inventive to use a phonetic "Joi" -spelling of Joy as an artist name - do any other artists who used a similar trick come to mind?



Unfortunately the quality of the YouTube video is not that great. There is a professional 4K transfer of an original 16 mm film in existence but unfortunately only some stills and a partial clip are currently available.




SOURCES
1 the liner notes for "Where It`s At" (Audiofidelity AFLP 2168) USA October 1966 stated:
"On the lower floor, in addition to an expanding library of hip foreign and domestic magazines, are a lounge with a color television set and another with Scopitone (a jukebox with films that accompany the music), On the upper floor is a movie theater which features both old and experimental avant-garde films."

2 "Scopitone On Display", Journal Herald, Dayton, Ohio 26 October 1965