In 1988, Cinemax produced a rock ‘n’ roll concert full of big names like Bruce Springsteen and k.d. lang. However, the most lauded performance of that special night may belong to singer/songwriter, Roy Orbison.
Roy Orbison and Friends: A Black and White was filmed in black and white at the Ambassador in Los Angeles. The exclusive event was truly a musical night to remember.
In this excerpt, Roy Orbison sings “Oh, Pretty Woman,” sometimes listed as simply “Pretty Woman.” Orbison wrote the song with his friend Bill Dees. The lyrics are inspired by Orbison’s wife, Claudette, who interrupted his conversation with Dees to say she was going out. Orbison asked her if she had enough cash, to which Dees replied, “A pretty woman never needs any money.”
“Oh, Pretty Woman” was the number four song of 1964 and was certified gold within months of its release. Orbison posthumously won a Grammy for this performance of the song for the Black and White concert in 1991.
During the concert, Orbison is all smiles in the foggy room, strumming his guitar along with a full Rock ‘n’ Roll band. He looks like he is having an incredible time on the stage with his musician friends.
Orbison’s song was the title track of the 1990 film, Pretty Woman, which starred Richard Gere as a wealthy businessman and his love interest, Julia Roberts, a down on her luck Hollywood prostitute.
Enjoy this clip from Roy Orbison and Friends: Black and White. This is one of the final performances of Orbison, so the concert was really one last look at a singer/songwriter legend.