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December 20th Clemson Historic Picture Of The Day

1961: The Hill, Rat Hop, And The Blue Notes

(Photo Uploaded By Alan Cutts)

Today’s photo is from 1961 and the Tigers are coming down the hill prior to a game with Maryland. The date of this game is September 30th, 1961 and the Tigers would fall to the Terps 24-21 in route to a 5-5 season that included a 3-3 ACC record. Walter Cox and Jimmy King were members of that 1961 team.

I love the white jerseys the Tigers wore at home during this era and I would love Clemson wearing throw back uniforms like these for a home game sometime in the future.

You can see the sign at the top of the hill advertising a formal dance that would take place in Clemson later in the year. The first formal dance of the fall of 1961, the "Rat Hop", was held in November and a band called the Blue Notes provided the music. It was at this time that the new dance sensation, The Twist, is seen on the Clemson campus.

The Blue Notes are now considered one of the great free jazz bands of their era, whose music was given a unique flavor by their integration of African styles such as Kwela into the progressive jazz ideas of the time.

Miss Dia Bettencourt, of Savannah, Georgia, is selected Rat Queen at this dance in 1961. The Phi Kapps, a singing quartet of Phi Kappa Delta fraternity also sang with the Blue Notes on some numbers.

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