SLY STONE, TOTALLY WASTED (AND TOTALLY AMAZING)
ON THE DICK CAVETT SHOW
Even a lucid Sly Stone is a marked contrast with the as-patrician-as-a-midwesterner-gets raconteur/columnist Dick Cavett. So when Sly and the Family Stone appeared on a 1971 episode of Cavett’s talk show, and Sly did his post-performance interview blitzed out of his fucking skull, high comedy ensued (no pun). After a killer performance of “I Want to Take You Higher” (too easy, not gonna take it), Stone sat down with an unflappable Cavett for some of the most hilariously groggy repartee in television history.
At one point, Cavett asked a left-field seeming question—though in Stone’s state, any question probably could have seemed a non-sequitur—about music theory. Stone was in fact steeped in theory, and nipped the question in the bud (had to) by channeling his old music teacher David Froelich in an utterly jaw-dropping outburst. Sly’s benumbed appearance can be found on the Dick Cavett Show: Rock Icons DVD, but you can watch Cavett and Stone hold their own against one another right here, in magnificent fuzzyvision. The first video is the musical performance, the second is the interview.