One of the more underreported pop-culture deaths of the past few days has to be that of Jimmy O'Neill, who hosted the ABC music program Shindig, which aired from 1964 to 1966. Despite the short-lived nature of the show, it was a strong complement to the network's American Bandstand, and just about every major mid-'60s act -- the Beatles, the Stones, the Supremes, the Temptations -- played on the show (OK, so Bob Dylan didn't -- but people sang his songs.)
So far, most of the news of O'Neill's death has come out of Los Angeles, with paper of record the Los Angeles Times doing an obituary after some L.A.-based blogs broke the story.
I'm just old enough to remember Shindig! and just young enough to not remember much detail about it, except that my older sisters were teen-agers at the time and they watched it. But as you can tell from the YouTube clips linked above (and the one embedded below), it was a pretty cool show, and O'Neill was an engaging -- and engaged -- host.
I first learned of O'Neill's death when Alan Price, the host of White Settlement-based Internet radio station/show Alan's Golden Oldies, posted about it Sunday night on his Facebook page. (Here's a profile of Price I did a couple of years ago.) Price will throw an on-air Shindig party on his 1 to 5 p.m. show Tuesday (Jan. 15) afternoon. To check it out, go here. Price will have special guests. And here's a taste of what O'Neill and Shindig were all about. (Donna Loren, featured in this lineup, will be Price's guest.)