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Village People

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Village People is a Disco band that formed New York City, New York, United States in 1977. The group is well known for their outrageous on-stage costumes (the members dressing up as a police officer, an American Indian chief, a construction worker, a soldier, a leatherman (biker) and a cowboy) as for their catchy tunes and suggestive lyrics.

The band was assembled in 1977 and managed by two French musicians, Jacques Morali and Henri Belolo, specifically to showcase and perform their disco music creations. Much like Frank Farian’s Boney M. or Spice Girls, the group was manufactured. Despite the French song writers, the songs were all in English.

The band’s name references a well-known gay area of New York City, Greenwich Village. Jacques Morali and Henri Belolo got the inspiration for creating an assembly of American man archetypes based on the gay men of the Village who frequently dressed in various fantasy ways. The police officer character is said to have been inspired by an actual Sacramento County (California) Sheriff’s Deputy - David Orth.

The United States Navy considered using the Village People hit “In the Navy” in a recruiting advertising campaign on television and radio. They contacted Belolo, who decided to give the rights for free on the condition that the Navy help them shoot the music video. Less than a month later, Village People arrived at the San Diego Naval base. The Navy provided them with a war ship, several airplanes, and hundreds of Navy men.

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