A Tribute to Sparkle Plenty – Family Dog Concert Flyer 1965

An original A Tribute to Sparkle Plenty concert flyer, advertising the 2nd San Francisco dance-concert thrown by the nascent Family Dog organization in late 1965.

This Family Dog Lovin’ Spoonful herald has a pretty cluttered appearance, but in fact it advertises only two rock groups and two MC’s, and the rest is razzle-dazzle graphics.

In this video, I actually show you two versions of this Family Dog Tribute to Sparkle Plenty handbill… the first one is on yellow paper, and the second is on blue.

I’ve never heard if one version is rarer than the other, the yellow Tribute to Sparkle Plenty flyer or the blue one.

Both versions of this Tribute to Sparkle Plenty concert flier were printed with black ink; I believe, however, that some of them were colored-in by hand by the Family Dog people to make them more attractive and catchy.

It’s interesting to note the way two comic book characters were used for this Family Dog Lovin’ Spoonful concert flyer, undoubtedly without any permission obtained… Dick Tracy and, much smaller and less obvious, Sparkle Plenty herself. Don’t blink or you’ll miss her!

I assume it shows up on this video that the yellow Family Dog Tribute to Sparkle Plenty flier was once folded down into thirds for a #10 envelope, and shows those horizontal creases. The blue one, however, has no such creases.

Legendary poster artist Alton Kelley created the artwork for this Tribute to Sparkle Plenty appearance sheet. He was one of the four original Family Dog founding members.

You might notice that Kelley used a number of “exploding” visual affects on his Family Dog Lovin’ Spoonful concert flier, about seven in all.

One has to wonder why Kelley put the show’s October concert date, “24,” in quotation marks on his Family Dog Lovin’ Spoonful flier?

It’s really puzzling how this Family Dog Tribute to Sparkle Plenty leaflet doesn’t use the important words “dance-concert” anywhere, making me think it must’ve been an oversight. After all, that was a key selling point for the three late-1965 Family Dog events… they finally allowed music fans to get up and boogie!

This size of this Family Dog Lovin’ Spoonful slinger is about standard for a regular sheet of paper, roughly 8.5 x 10”.  The Tribute to Sparkle Plenty poster runs much larger.

This Tribute to Sparkle Plenty herald claims that advance tickets were available only at Sherman Clay (which, oddly, is called “Shermen and Clay”), a well-known piano and music store in San Francisco.

It’s hard to imagine that tickets for this early, important event were sold only at a piano store and the door, and that’s all.  That is, if this Family Dog Tribute to Sparkle Plenty slinger is to be believed.

Russ “The Moose” Syracuse was the sole emcee at the Family Dog’s first dance-concert, A Tribute to Dr. Strange, but Larry Hankin of The Committee got co-billing with him on this Family Dog Tribute to Sparkle Plenty concert leaflet.

I know it’s a picayune point, but this Family Dog Lovin’ Spoonful handout has a common mistake often found on concert advertisements… it refers to midnight as “12 P.M.” in the date line up at the top.

And speaking of picayune, take note of the printer’s union bug down in the lower right-hand corner of this Tribute to Sparkle Plenty concert handout… it’s a key way to ascertain the originals from some of the bootlegs one can assume are out there.

I’ll just go ahead and run the entire wording of this Tribute to Sparkle Plenty concert herald, just as Kelley penned it, from top to bottom:

Sunday October “24” – 8 till 12 P.M. – (Dick Tracy appears) The Family Dog Presents A Tribute to Sparkle Plenty (and she appears)

Lovin’ Spoonfull [sic; misspelled] and The Charlatans; Larry Hankin with Russ The Moose Syracuse

Longshoremen’s Hall = Fisherman’s Wharf. Tickets $2.50 – Shermen and Clay [sic], and at the door. (Union bug.)

You might notice that only two rock groups played on this night, according to this Tribute to Sparkle Plenty concert slinger.  That’s odd, because four bands had played at the Tribute to Dr. Strange dance the previous weekend.

That might have been because of the Spoonful’s rising national prominence at the time, as they raced up the charts with “Do You Believe in Magic,” their first hit record. That’s also probably why Kelley made their name larger and more prominent on this Family Dog Tribute to Sparkle Plenty concert handbill.

You have to love the way The Charlatans’ name is displayed in the band’s original logo form, instead of in new Kelley psychedelic lettering, on this Family Dog Lovin’ Spoonful flyer.

In a mistake that was probably made frequently throughout the band’s entire career, the name of The Lovin’ Spoonful on this Family Dog Tribute to Sparkle Plenty handout is misspelled with two “L’s” as “Lovin’ Spoonfull.” Sorry, but as a former editor I just had to point that out!

Even though he’s not credited by name on this Family Dog Lovin’ Spoonful appearance sheet, light-show maestro Bill Ham had just started doing his popular light-show projections at the time of this event.

Kelley decided it wasn’t necessary to put “1965” on his Family Dog Lovin’ Spoonful leaflet, because almost no concert posters and handbills did so… it was just a given.

This Family Dog Lovin’ Spoonful handbill is happily lectured about by music-memorabilia collector Peter Howard (either phone 805-540-0020 or write pete@postercentral.com). I will pay the very best price for this flyer or any of the early Family Dog concert advertising materials.

I don’t have a Web page for psychedelic handbills, but to see a few cool psych ’60s concert posters, just trip over to this page right here on my Web site: http://www.postercentral.com/psychedelic.htm

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