This Beat Goes On: Canadian Pop Music in the 1970s (2009)

TV Movie  |   |  Documentary  |  27 August 2009 (Canada)
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Tells the story of Canadian music in the 1970s, a ground-breaking era of great sounds, from glam and progressive rock to punk and reggae.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Himself - The Guess Who
Domenic Troiano ...
Himself - The Guess Who (archive footage)
Frank Davies ...
Himself - Daffodil Records
Red Robinson ...
Himself - Disc Jockey
Joe Keithley ...
Himself - D.O.A.
Terry McBride ...
Himself - Nettwerk Records
Nardwuar the Human Serviette ...
Terry Jacks ...
Danny Marks ...
Himself - Edward Bear
Duff Roman ...
Himself - Roman Records, CHUM-FM Program Director
Serena Ryder ...
Randy Bachman ...
Himself - B.T.O.
Sam Feldman ...
Chris Thorsteinson ...
Himself - Doc Walker


Tells the story of Canadian music in the 1970s, a ground-breaking era of great sounds, from glam and progressive rock to punk and reggae.

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27 August 2009 (Canada)  »

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Great Documentary That Made Me Sad I Was Born Too Late
8 May 2011 | by (Toronto, ON) – See all my reviews

"This Beat Goes On" is a CBC-produced 90-minute documentary that chronicles the rise of the Canadian music biz in the 1970s.

The program is split into sections according to music categories. Almost all the artist profiles include rare concert/video performances but please note these are not the full songs--in most cases they are only half. For most artists, I have written in parentheses the songs performed: Bachman-Turner Overdrive ("You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet"); Rush ("Closer to the Heart"); Trooper ("Raise a Little Hell"); Max Webster ("Paradise Skies"); April Wine ("Roller"); Loverboy ("Turn Me Loose"); Prism ("Spaceship Superstar").

Terry Jacks ("Seasons in the Sun"); Burton Cummings ("Stand Tall"--includes about 30 seconds of Alice Cooper "Killer" tour footage when Burton speaks of opening for Alice); Dan Hill ("Sometimes When We Touch"); Gino Vanelli ("I Just Wanna Stop"); Nick Gilder ("Hot Child in the City").

There's a Blues-Rock section which mentions Offenbach, Mainline, Dutch Mason, Downchild Blues Band ("Flip, Flop and Fly") and David Wilcox.

The folk-music scene mentions Joni Mitchell ("Free Man in Paris"--though some of the performance footage of her seems to be from the late '80s); Kate and Anna McGarrigle; Anne Murray ("Cotton Jenny"); Gordon Lightfoot ("Sundown"); Valdy ("Play Me a Rock and Roll Song"); The Good Brothers; Stan Rogers, Figgy Duff and Bruce Cockburn ("Wondering Where the Lions Are").

The punk/alternative section profiles The Dishes ("Hot Property"); The Kings ("This Beat Goes On/Switchin' To Glide"); Nash the Slash ("Wolf"); Diodes ("Tired of Waking Up Tired"); Teenage Head ("Let's Shake"); Pointed Sticks, The Viletones, D.O.A., The Demics.

Some of the French-Canadian artists profiled include Robert Charlebois, Cano, Harmonium, Les Seguin, and Gilles Valliquette. I admit I hadn't heard of any of these artists prior to viewing this, but these sections didn't bore me either.

We have short snippets and comments from Lorraine Segato, Terry Jacks, Tom Cochrane, producer Bob Ezrin, kd Lang, Randy Bachman, Burton Cummings, Dan Hill, Bruce Cockburn, Mitsou, Larry Gowan, Kim Mitchell, Colin James, Carole Pope, Nash the Slash, Murray McLaughlin, Geddy Lee and members of Barenaked Ladies.

Of course, I really bought this for the Rough Trade and Carole Pope content and it contains a great performance of Carole singing "High School Confidential" in a red leather outfit and tons of black eyeliner.

The Bonus Features include 8 separate interviews including Dan Hill, Murray McLaughlin, Nash the Slash and Valdy. I only watched Carole's interview as well as Steven Leckie's and Nash the Slash, so I can't vouch for the length of the others but these were just under or over 10 minutes. Carole rhymes off some of Rough Trade's early song titles, explains how she came up with the group name, and sings the praises of Divine and Lisa Dalbello.

I found this to be a very interesting, educational, comprehensive program and any fan of Canadian music needs to see this. Their only gripe (as is mine) would likely be that their favorite performer doesn't receive enough screen time.

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