Light Shows

One aspect that made rock memorable in the sixties were the light shows. Kinda pre-video on-site MTV. Atlanta had one of the best The Electric Collage. Electric Collage was the first Light Show in Atlanta. It began as experiments with light and color for The Catacombs. When a member asked David Braden if they could get things and do a light show at The Catacombs, he reportedly replied, “Go ahead, do it! Why are you asking me? I’m NOT your mother!” Thus he began to be called Mother David.

From that they grew.

Steve Cheatham and Frank Hughes have a wonderful site on the later Electric Collage.

Schroder on light shows        5 lightshows-5

 I can tell you about Light Shows in Atlanta. Scott Bennett went to San Francisco in the Spring of 1966. He came back in the fall of ’66 with tales of strange lights pulsing and moving to the beat of the music and a little 45 recording of a guy named Jimi Hendrix with Purple Haze on one side. Scott had worked with a light show crew while he was out there and he convinced me we could do the same thing in Atlanta. We bought and rented equipment, tweaked our art 🙂 and we were ready. We started with a little band called the Esquires. They did High School dances, frat parties and opened for some of the better known groups in the SE. After a few months of doing light shows for next to nothing, we finally got a gig at the old Whiskey A Go Go. To my knowledge this was the first “professional” light show in Atlanta. In the spring of ’67 we were paid an obscene amount of money to do a light show at the Piedmont Driving Club. They had a “Hippie” theme party and we did the lights and also opened up the club to street people for that added touch of hippie atmosphere. It was a hoot! Our business was called “Lights By Luv Lites” We were prepared for everything except success. It was pretty much downhill after the Driving Club. We were thrown out of an armory concert in Anniston, AL for showing clips of Martin Luther King’s funeral as a background to our moving lights. Dr. King wasn’t real popular in AL….

Enough for now.

Take care,

Schroeder