A classic clip of Aerosmith performing their debut album classic Dream On is the latest footage to be uploaded to The Midnight Special‘s official YouTube channel, which was launched earlier this year.
It’ll be a familiar film to many – the footage has been floating round the internet for years, – but this is the first time the performance, originally broadcast on August 16, 1974, has been made officially available online. The footage also appeared on the 2006 DVD Burt Sugarman’s The Midnight Special: 1974, which featured the band and their iconic neon sign on the cover.
Aerosmith also played their long-familiar cover of Tiny Bradshaw’s Train Kept A Rollin’ on the show – taken from second album Get Your Wings, released earlier that year – and joined a lineup that also included Canadian singer-songwriter David Clayton-Thomas, Dutch rockers Golden Earing (who performed the classic Radar Love), former Temptations singer Eddie Kendricks, and funk legends Kool & the Gang. The show was hosted by Little Richard.
The Midnight Special ran for 450 episodes on NBC between 1972 and 1983, but it didn’t get off the ground without a struggle.
“I had trouble getting any of the networks,” producer Burt Sugarman told Icon Vs Icon. “I wanted NBC because I wanted to follow The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. Johnny was a next-door neighbour of mine. We played tennis all the time together.
“I knew that that rating, when he went off, would be terrific to lead in to something but the network felt that the rock’n’roll people were all drugged out and half of them wouldn’t show, and what happened then was I said, ‘I’ll tell you what, I’ll put up the money,’ and I said, ‘I’ll give you another reason. It’s a voting year, and I’ll make it a get-out-to-vote show for young people.’ That’s pretty hard to turn down.”