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Groupies (1970): "foul-mouthed, clever, patient, anxious, ugly, beautiful, self-aware girls" (and boys)
June 8, 2012 10:54 PM   Subscribe

"For the real function of "Groupies" is to display fantastic personality — in its foul-mouthed, clever, patient, anxious, ugly, beautiful, self-aware girls. Everybody is always on camera; everybody has a story (anything from last night's conquest to total life history) that she tells almost compulsively — and from this eager collaboration between medium and messenger grows a vitality that is its own sufficient reward." Groupies, the 1970 documentary of female (and a few male) groupies and the bands they follow, is up on DailyMotion.

The documentary includes performances by Joe Cocker, Ten Years After, Spooky Tooth, Terry Reid, Keith Webb, Peter Shelly, Dry Creek Road, and the Grease Band, and interviews with Pamela Des Barres, author of "I'm With the Band" (Google books preview), and Cynthia Plaster Caster, who has recently been the subject of her own documentary.

Segments 2 and 4 are flagged for mature content, so you'll have to deactivate the family filter setting. There are also ads before the clips if you don't block ads. As an alternative source, you can watch a lower quality version that looks like it's from a later-generation bootleg VHS on YouTube, which is missing part 4. Some parts are also flagged for mature content, requiring you to sign onto YouTube to view them.
posted by filthy light thief (21 comments total) 32 users marked this as a favorite

 
It looks like it’s been available for a while on DVD.
posted by bongo_x at 11:03 PM on June 8, 2012


More: The Groupies, an album consisting of interview with actual groupies.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 11:17 PM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]


Before I bother to log in to Daily Motion to watch the whole thing, how mature is the "mature content" about these groupies?
posted by twoleftfeet at 11:34 PM on June 8, 2012


VERY mature: they are discussing 19th century British naval policy.
posted by Saxon Kane at 11:51 PM on June 8, 2012 [28 favorites]


Anything on cannibalism?
posted by philip-random at 12:34 AM on June 9, 2012


I’ve only watch the first three parts, but I like it.
It has a trashy kind of Warhol feel to it.
It seems to find a niche in my aesthetic bone
posted by quazichimp at 1:23 AM on June 9, 2012


It seems to be possible to turn off the "Family Filter" on Dailymotion without creating an account.
posted by XMLicious at 1:56 AM on June 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Great to see some early Terry Reid though.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 3:35 AM on June 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: my aesthetic bone
posted by Joseph Gurl at 3:54 AM on June 9, 2012


I watched the first four minutes and had to stop, it was depressing on so many levels — lost innocence, wasted youth, the failure of the Aquarian Age, and more. It looked good though. I may go back to it when I feel like I can laugh some of it off.
posted by ubiquity at 6:16 AM on June 9, 2012


Before I bother to log in to Daily Motion to watch the whole thing, how mature is the "mature content" about these groupies?

It didn't make me log in; I just had to click on a link to turn off the "family filter." I only watched a couple of episodes, but didn't see anything more risque than mild nakedness, someone getting dressed in the bathroom kind of thing.

The most interesting thing to me was how distinctive the way the women talked, compared to the recent discussions of vocal fry.
posted by Forktine at 6:59 AM on June 9, 2012


I may go back to it when I feel like I can laugh some of it off.

I wouldn't bother, ubiquity. I watched the whole thing and it didn't get any less depressing. A bunch of dumb girls, barely out of their teens, offering themselves up like sacrificial meat to a gang of louts who were so far up their own arses they could have given themselves a colonoscopy.

The one exception was the gorgeous Terry Reid, who had to deal with a drunk, insistent 16 year old gay groupie, and did so with a generosity and a kindness that would be surprising in many places even today, but was pretty damn remarkable for the time.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 8:01 AM on June 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ron Dorfman certainly found his niche, career-wise. This film might have been his high point. But Peter Nevard went on to bigger and better--he shot The Kids are Alright.
posted by Ideefixe at 8:52 AM on June 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ron Dorfman certainly found his niche, career-wise. This film might have been his high point.

His list of films on IMDB is hilarious. Who wouldn't want to be listed as "Bearded Guy at Orgy (uncredited)" in Forbidden Ways? In 1970 he also worked on Gimme Shelter -- looking at his career, you can see a quick and decisive move towards away from documentaries towards "work that pays the bills."
posted by Forktine at 10:09 AM on June 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


The Alvin Lee performances were great, Terry Reid did stand out in that scene, and I have always been amused by the Plaster Casters. But yes, the girls were sad and most of the musicians were jackasses.

My favorite groupies are still AbFab's Edina and Patsy.
posted by madamjujujive at 1:45 PM on June 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


I watched the first four minutes and had to stop, it was depressing on so many levels ... the failure of the Aquarian Age...
posted by ubiquity at 2:16 PM on June 9


You say that like it was a bad a thing.
posted by Decani at 10:32 AM on June 10, 2012


Metafilter: my aesthetic bone

Or plaster cast thereof.
posted by Trochanter at 10:59 AM on June 10, 2012


> My favorite groupies are still AbFab's Edina and Patsy.

Mine are The Fluorescent Leech and Eddie.
posted by jfuller at 12:45 PM on June 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


Pedantry, jfuller: Phlorescent Leech & Eddie
Thanks for the memory there ;-)
posted by madamjujujive at 2:27 PM on June 10, 2012


The Alvin Lee performances were great

Despite his clear guitar virtuosity, Alvin Lee has always annoyed me.

Why?

Because he insists on making his orgasm face every time he plays the damn guitar! Stop doing it, Alvin! Or put a bag over your head!
posted by PeterMcDermott at 12:18 AM on June 11, 2012


watched the first four minutes and had to stop, it was depressing on so many levels — lost innocence, wasted youth, the failure of the Aquarian Age, and more.

I don't know about that. I briefly met Pamela DeBarres (the first girl) a few years back, and she is a very good friend of my best friend. She seems to have come out of all of it very level-headed and quite content with her life.
She has quite a few irons in the fire - teaching writing classes, working to promote some of the up and coming bands in the LA scene, clothing design. She has a great relationship with her son and her now ex-husband. She is still stunningly gorgeous (no plastic surgery AFAIK) and seems very up-beat and serene. I don't know for sure what makes her so different than her cohorts who didn't fare so well, but it seems like she always maintained creative interests of her own outside of hanging out with musicians.
posted by echolalia67 at 2:15 PM on June 12, 2012


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