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Within the structure of the program, there were two enduring elements. The first was the “Soul Train Scramble Board”, where two dancers are given sixty seconds to unscramble a set of letters which form the name of that show’s performer or a notable person in African-American history. In describing the person’s renown, the host concluded their description with the phrase “…whose name you should know”. There was also the popular “Soul Train Line”, in which all the dancers form two lines with a space in the middle for dancers to strut down and dance in consecutive order. Originally, this consisted of a couple – with men on one side and women on the other.

The performances remain the most poignant to this day.

Aretha Franklin Performing “Mary Don’t You Weep”

Staple Singers Performing “Touch A Hand, Make A Friend”

Deneice Williams