Sam & Dave in Oslo (1967)

February 19, 2018

Dancing is not a crime. At least that is what we would think in 2018. Back in 1967 however, the security at a Sam & Dave concert in Oslo begged to differ. Music was considered an art form best enjoyed in all quietness from a velvet seat. And dancing apparently was forbidden.

[ Sam & Dave performing Hold On, I'm Comin' in Njardhallen - Oslo, Norway April 7th, 1967 ]

 

The soul men Sam & Dave don’t even seem to mind the motionless crowd as they’re giving it all they’ve got. Passion and sweat show from their faces while they dance and swing all over the stage. Their performance is completely juxtaposed to their audience, which is told not to move an inch.

 

As soon as the first person loses it, stands up, and starts clapping along fervidly, the rest of the audience is compelled to join. Sam & Dave continue to hype up the crowd in their improvised break-down by repeatedly shouting ‘do me a favor!’ The tension rises and Oslo goes wild.

 

The beat swells and the whole hall gets up. This energy burst causes the uptight security to hurry to the front in an attempt to get everyone down again. Needless to say, they fail horribly. Sam & Dave are on the loose and the demographically white audience is ecstatic like never before.

 

This concert is somewhat exemplary for the emancipation of youth culture in the 1960s. The stern and conservative idea of a concert is broken by two funky American men, showing that live music is more than listening. It is movement, immersion, and euphoria for those giving in to it in the way these Norwegians did.

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