Tuesday, July 14, 2009

VH1 and VH1 Classic Premiere New Five-Part Week-Long Iconic Series 'Lords of the Revolution'

NEW YORK, July 14 /PRNewswire/ -- They trafficked in sex, drugs, music, and subversive politics. They held peaceful protests and violent insurrections. They were the leaders of the most significant cultural transformations of the 20(th) century. From political heavyweights like the Black Panthers to cutting-edge cultural trendsetters like Andy Warhol's Factory crew to Harvard professor turned psychedelic advisor Timothy Leary -- they questioned authority, celebrated nonconformity, and dared to be different. VH1 Rock Docs premieres a new 5-part series "Lords of the Revolution" beginning on Monday, August 10 - Friday, August 14 at 8pm* airing on VH1 and VH1 Classic. Narrated by Richard Belzer, each hour-long episode of "Lords of the Revolution" celebrates the counterculture icons of the '60s and '70s -- the legends who defied the social, political and cultural mores of their time including: Andy Warhol, Muhammad Ali, The Black Panthers, Timothy Leary, and Cheech and Chong.

Edgy, colorful, and visually dynamic, each hour long episode of "Lords of the Revolution" features rare archival footage and photos as well as new first-hand accounts and interviews including (to name a few), Betsey Johnson, Lou Reed, Bobby Seale, Sally Kirkland, James Cromwell, George Foreman, and Perry Farrell -- all combined to tell the compelling, dangerous and subversive stories of a revolution that continues to influence popular culture today.

"Lords of Revolution" Episodes include:


In an era defined by protest and turbulence, perhaps nobody captured the attention of America in the late 1960s more so than Muhammad Ali. As heavyweight champion, Ali electrified the sports world with his sharp tongue and showmanship for flair. But out of the ring, his conversion to Islam and defiant refusal to fight in Vietnam thrust him into the center of a blistering political controversy. Ali never backed down and gave a voice to black America that helped galvanize the civil rights movement. He also fueled the anti-war movement, inspiring young adults to question the government and speak out. He spoke his mind freely, defended his religious beliefs with vigor, and willingly accepted the consequences of his actions, which later cost him his title and license to box.


From the moment they broke onto the scene in the early 1970's, Cheech and Chong began redefining comedy. At a time when drug culture was still considered taboo, they boldly emerged from a cloud of pot smoke with a brand of humor that both championed and lampooned stoners everywhere, much to the chagrin of the establishment. A string of successful comedy albums and relentless touring established the duo as "the rock-n-roll comedians" whose popularity continued to soar as stoner culture seeped into the mainstream. Suddenly, there were head shops everywhere and by 1977 President Jimmy Carter was in favor of legalizing marijuana. Then came Cheech and Chong's first film, Up in Smoke, which became an instant classic, immortalized by pot smokers to this day, and launched a successful Hollywood career for the comedy duo as they continued the marijuana crusade until their breakup in 1985.


In the late 1960s, there were few radical groups more controversial than The Black Panthers. Led by the dynamic personalities of Bobby Seale, Huey Newton and Eldridge Cleaver, the Panthers boldly challenged white America to deliver justice and opportunity for all. Armed with guns and clad with berets and leather jackets, the Panthers advocated self-defense; initiated social service programs nationwide; and became a defiant symbol of Black Power. They also become a target as the FBI and police waged a bloody war to bring the party down.


From the moment Harvard professor Timothy Leary ate magic mushrooms in 1960, his life would never be the same. Advocating the use of LSD and other mind-altering drugs to expand consciousness, Leary transformed himself from an eccentric Harvard professor into the leader of the 1960s psychedelic counter-culture movement. Leary's influence helped shape the music, fashion and politics of a new generation. He defied authority and fought the government at every turn, earning the title, in President Nixon's words, as "the most dangerous man in America."


From 1964 - 68, Warhol's factory on East 47(th) Street provided a social arena for collaborative experimentation. Warhol developed an eclectic network of associates that spanned the worlds of poetry, fashion, film, photography, art, music and the drug culture. Speed freaks, drag queens, musicians, poets, superstars, fashion beauties, and avant-garde artists helped shape a scene unique in American history at a time when Warhol produced some of his most revolutionary work.

"Lords of the Revolution" is the newest entry in the Emmy Award-winning VH1 Rock Doc franchise. VH1 Rock Docs are feature-length documentaries that tell unique stories of artists and music from a wide range of genres, styles, and musical perspectives.

"Lords of the Revolution" is a production of VH1. Martin Torgoff is the writer and consulting producer. Ted Kim serves as supervising producer. Brad Abramson, Stephen Mintz, Shelly Tatro and Jeff Olde serve as executive producers for VH1.

VH1 connects viewers to the music, artists and pop culture that matter to them most with TV series, specials, live events, exclusive online content and public affairs initiatives. VH1 is available in 95 million households in the U.S. VH1 also has an array of digital channels and services including VH1Classic, VH1 Soul, VH1 Mobile, VH1Games and extensive broadband video on VH1.com. Connect with VH1 at VH1.com.

Launched in May 2000, VH1 Classic is a 24-hour network that present videos, concerts and music specials all day long, featuring the best of rock, soul and pop artists from the 60's, 70's and 80's, including The Beatles, The Stones, Tina Turner, Led Zeppelin, Marvin Gaye, The Who, Stevie Wonder, The Police, Madonna and many more. Learn more at VH1Classic.com.

*All times ET/PT

1 comment:

sportscenterisnext said...

Cheech and Chong was excellent, thanks for a return to classic comedy.