Ode to 12 Inch Joes: good news and bad news

Back in the day, I used to attend animation festivals semi-regularly. My favorite animation raconteurs were “Spike and Mike” who were pioneers in getting the word out about computer animation. Aardman Animations, the folks who bring you “Wallace and Gromit” first were aired in small animation festivals. Nick Park, Marv Newland, Tim Burton, John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton, and Will Vinton all owe a huge debt to Spike and Mike.

One film I saw in (I believe) the 1990 Festival program left a lasting impression upon me. It featured pixelated (stop motion) G.I. Joes of the “real hair and beard” vintage, dancing to the soundtrack– “I’ll Take you There” by the Staple Singers. I believe the title was “Ode to Joe” and it was by Gregory P. Grant. It was an outstanding piece of animation. I have looked for that film for years, to no avail. On a whim, I searched YouTube the other night, and voila, there it was. Alas, the folks who managed the Staple Singers have a real problem with sharing the soundtrack, so the film is displayed without it. Not to be detered, I present the original ODE TO JOE.. with a link to a streaming version of I’LL TAKE YOU THERE, all nice and legal, like. Try to open one in a new window and start both streams as close to simultaneously as you can. It’s ALMOST like the real thing.

Staple Singers – I’ll Take You There

2012 update to this post: I found a place where you can see the original film intact. Follow this link to view: Ode to G.I. Joe Intact.

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