Happy New Year from Night Flight!

By on December 30, 2016

On Friday, December 31, 1982, Night Flight aired a five-hour New Year’s Special which featured music videos, video profiles, exclusive interviews, and so much more.


Before we find ourselves plunging headlong into the unknown of Year 2017, we thought we’d take a look back at all five hours of our vintage New Year’s special — which also features a special episode of then-ongoing L.A.-based live concert series “New Wave Theatre” — streaming exclusively on our Night Flight Plus channel.

Part 1 features a profile of Bow Wow Wow; a special look at then-recent New German Cinema; a profile of historian and photographer Michael Ochs and his incredible archives; a performance by stand-up comedian J.J. Wall; a quick peek at 1950s TV’s Space Patrol; plus performances by the Doors, the Tom Tom Club and George Thorogood & the Destroyers; quick snippets from J-Men Forever; an interview with Steven Spielberg with scenes from E.T., and more!



Part 2 features performances by stand-up comedians Kelley Rodgers, Ron Darian and Andrea Stone; an exclusive Night Flight interview with Bob and Doug McKenzie (Rick Moranis & Dave Thomas); music videos by Devo (“Peekaboo,” “Beautiful World”), including an excerpt from Night Flight’s interview with the band; live concert footage and music videos by Neil Young (a few songs from his concert film Rust Never Sleeps), Nat “King” Cole and his trio, Dire Straits (the rarely-seen extended video for “Private Investigations”), Bob Marley and the Wailers, and more!


Part 3 features performances by stand-up comedians The Funny Boys, Kelley Rodgers, Mike Eagan and Mike Reynolds; excerpts from Night Flight’s interviews with Ozzy Osbourne and Wendy O. Williams (plus the video for the Plasmatics”s “The Damned”); musical performances by Duke Ellington (“Caravan”), R.E.O. Speedwagon, Jimi Hendrix (“Wild Thing”) and an excerpt from Rod Stewart and Faces “Final Concert” in 1974 at London’s Kilburn State Theatre (he was joined by Keith Richards on guitar), and more!


Part 4 features performances by stand-up comedians Stephen Friedland, Larry Amoros, Ron Darian, the Funny Boys, and the incredible Lenny Bruce; plus, music videos by Gary Numan, the Pointer Sisters, Cab Calloway, Sarah Vaughan, Laurie Anderson (her extended version of “O Superman”), Adrian Belew, and the Residents (“Moisture”).


Part 5 features Night Flight’s world premiere of Grace Jones‘s video for “One Man Show,” a long-form music video collection released in 1982 (includes “My Jamaican Guy”); more Jimi Hendrix; Night Flight’s “first discovery of 1983, the Spies” (!!); plus a special episode of “New Wave Theatre’ featuring bits and pieces of performances by Hollywood Trash, the Plugz, Rayonics, Western Heroes, Fear, the Film, the Angry Samoans, the Unknowns, Top Jimmy and the Rhythm Pigs, and 45 Grave.

We’re then treated to a special montage of show openings by Peter Ivers, host of “New Wave Theatre,” some of which feels just as appropriate today as it must have seemed back on December 31, 1982:

“Hi, welcome to ‘New Wave Theatre.’ The end of the world’s a great topic for tonight, as streetcorner doomsayers with their ‘Repent!’ signs have traded in their cars for mopeds with license plates that say ‘Help!’ Where have all the warnings gone? Does new music signal the end of the world as we knew it? In Hollywood, no one talks about the end of the world, not yet anyway, because they’re shooting movies now from 1984.”


“People need to believe humanity has a future and there can be no future without culture, and those who understand art and its meaning have a responsibility to share their view with the world and so doing lessen confusion.”

“… Could the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights have been written today? Some say not. Some say we’ve thrown away our independence, coughed up our freedom in exchange for a picnic lunch in an adult motel. Where do you as an audience draw the line between art and life? Aren’t they the same?”

There’s more, of course, and thank you Peter, we couldn’t have said it any better ourselves…

Stick around and you’ll see the show’s creator and executive producer David Jove as “Sri Maharooni.”


Towards the end of our five-hour special, Night Flight also gave away a brand new 1983 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am to a lucky contestant named Monica Guerrieri of Hubbard, Ohio, whose postcard naming their favorite Night Flight” episode was chosen among the thousands we received.

Happy New Year 2017 from your friends here at Night Flight, and Good Luck to all of us in 2017!


About Bryan Thomas

Bryan Thomas has been a freelancing writer/critic for All Music Guide, and a contributor to Launch, Music Connection, Big Takeover and numerous other publications and entertainment websites, blogs and zines, most of them long gone. He's written more than sixty sets of liner notes. He’s also worked for over twenty years at mostly reissue record labels -- prior to that he worked in bookstores and record stores, going all the way back to the original vinyl daze. He lives in the Miracle Mile neighborhood of Los Angeles, CA.
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