“I’m frightened of eggs, worse than frightened; they revolt me. That round white thing without any holes, and when you break it, inside there’s that yellow thing, round, without any holes… Brrr! Have you ever seen anything more revolting than an egg yolk breaking and spilling its yellow liquid? Blood is jolly, red. But egg yolk is yellow, revolting. I’ve never tasted it.”—Alfred Hitchcock
Fifty years ago, protesters were taking to the streets across the United States. Philadelphia and Harlem, N.Y., saw race riots. Atlantic City, N.J., saw picketers screaming outside the Democratic National Convention, and in Washington, D.C., anti-war activists took over the National Mall.
The soundtrack to it all was one song: Martha and the Vandellas’ 1964 hit, “Dancing in the Street.”
Mark Kurlanksy has written a new history of that protest anthem, called Ready for a Brand New Beat: How ‘Dancing in the Street’ Became the Anthem for a Changing America. Hear him trace the origins of the song on All Things Considered.