This short clip from ‘The Ed Sullivan Show’ gives us a glimpse of the amazing ‘Gladys Knight and the Pips.’ They appeared on the show in 1969 to perform ‘Let Us Entertain You.’
Ed introduces them, ‘Now ladies and gentlemen, here from the Copacabana in New York, the Fantastic Gladys Knight, and the Pips!’ The audience cheers, and Gladys is shown standing to the right of the screen in front of the Pips.
She is wearing a long black and white dress while the Pips are dressed in tuxedos with white shirts and pink bow ties. The background has sparkling lights and orange shades of color.
The Pips actually start the song delivering the 1st line, ‘Let us entertain you.’ Then Gladys joins in with her fantastic voice. The Pips have choreographed movements to their backup singing, similar to other groups of the era like the Temptations and the Supremes.
Gladys stands on her own small circular platform and joins in on a few motions with her arms to coordinate with the Pips. The harmonies are wonderfully arranged and performed.
‘Let Me Entertain You’ was written for the musical ‘Gypsy’ by Jule Styne and the iconic Stephen Sondheim. Gladys Knight gives it an r&b sound while staying true to the original version.
The group started out in 1952 as simply ‘The Pips’ but changed their name after their first hit ‘Every Beat of My Heart.’ This clip will get your heart beating and your toes tapping as Gladys Knight and the Pips deliver a showstopping performance!