Free to Be You and Me by Marlo Thomas and Friends
The book and album had released back in November of 1972. The video was then released on March 11th of 1974 as an ABC After School Special.
To be honest I didn't know there was a book until many years later. What I knew was the album and the show on TV. Yes for me the music was what I enjoyed. Listening several times to the same songs and stories. That might explain why mom was in a different room and had me wear a pair of head phones. Sometimes on the old albums you would look for the lines. The deeper ones meant it was a new song. On other albums I would use that to skip to the one song that I wanted to hear. On this one that never happened. Not once did I skip over a song or a story just to get to the one that I wanted. In this case I wanted them all.
As stated on the dust jacket - And Friends:
Alan Alda - Harry Belafonte - Mel Brooks - Jack Cassidy
Dick Cavett - Carol Channing - Billy De Wolfe - Rosey Grier
Shirley Jones - Bobby Morse - The New Seekers
Diana Ross - Diana Sands - Tom Smothers
Each person would tell a story or sing a song. Or in some cases have a conversation that in itself was the story. Each was enjoyable to listen to and at my young age, learn from and not realize it.
This is a great gift for a friend.
Its interesting how this was set up to reach out to the kids of the 1970's. And yet it is still useful today. One of my favorite songs which I share further down on this page has been able to help a college friend of mine. He was feeling upset and was trying to keep it inside. I am not sure how I laid my hands on this in the CD format but it didn't matter I did what I had to do to get this for him. I didn't tell him why just that it was for him and he needs to close the door and listen to it. I got one of those strange looks as he went into the bedroom and closed the door. I knew where the song was and about how long it would take for him to reach that point. So I played on the computer and listened. When I heard the song come on I stopped playing and started waiting. It took a while but he did come out of the room in tears and a thank you. The song was "Its Alright to Cry"
The Original Book and Movie on Amazon
First I don't own this book - yet. But I was able to check it out of our local library. Its interesting that they have had it on the shelf since 1986. This means that when the library moved from one location to another this was one of the books that made the trip. Now we are looking at 143 pages of material here. Not just words on a page. But many pictures. Both illustrations and actual photos. (And yes the first time I looked at the book was for the pictures.) There are poems and stories that flow over the pages. And the most interesting thing for me was the fact that for every song there is the music that accompanies it. Just like looking at the sheet music that you are about to preform with.
Looking back I still remember watching this on TV every change I could. I am not sure why I did not think of getting this on VHS or now DVD. Again another item added to my wish list. It is amazing how when you start writing about something how much the memories come back to you. Just seeing this available on DVD started me thinking about the different scenes. And helping me to decide what ones I would like to have to share.
The music by itself
Keep your eyes open on Amazon as this has shown up more than once on their $5 download page. I know as when I first saw it I added to my collection. I have the album but did not have a way to convert it to MP3.
These are five of the scenes that I thought you would enjoy from Free To Be You And Me.
Also included are the folks that preformed those scenes.
1) Boy Meets Girl - Marlo Thomas & Mel Brooks
2) Ladies First - Marlo Thomas
3) Atalantis - Marlo Thomas & Alan Alda
4) Its Alright To Cry - Rosey Grier
5) When we Grow Up - Michael Jackson & Robert Flack (Preformed on the album by Diana Ross)