Roy Orbison and Friends: A Black and White Night

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Roy Orbison and Friends: A Black and White Night is a 1988 Cinemax television special originally broadcast on January 3, 1988, starring Hall of Fame singer/songwriter Roy Orbison. The special was filmed entirely in black and white. A live album was released following the broadcast.


The special consisted of a performance of many of Orbison's hits at the then Ambassador Hotel's Cocoanut Grove nightclub in Los Angeles, filmed on September 30, 1987, approximately fourteen months before his death. Three songs, "Blue Bayou", "Claudette", and "Blue Angel", were filmed but not included in the original broadcast due to time constraints.

Other celebrity admirers of Orbison were in the audience, including Billy Idol, Patrick Swayze, Sandra Bernhard and Kris Kristofferson. The backing band was the TCB Band, which accompanied Elvis Presley from 1969 until his death in 1977: Glen D. Hardin on piano, James Burton on lead guitar, Jerry Scheff on bass, and Ronnie Tutt on drums. Male background vocalists, some of whom also joined in on guitar, were Bruce Springsteen, Tom Waits, Elvis Costello, Jackson Browne, J.D. Souther and Steven Soles. The female background vocalists were k.d. lang, Jennifer Warnes and Bonnie Raitt. During the end credits, several of the band members are shown talking about how Orbison influenced them.

The audio from this special was released as an album by Virgin Records in 1989, titled A Black & White Night Live.


The concert has been released in several home video formats, including VHS, Laserdisc, DVD, HD DVD, and Blu-ray. The soundtrack has been released on CD, SACD that features both Stereo and Multi Channel Mixes, 12" vinyl LP, and DVD-Audio. The Laserdisc and DVD releases both contain the two previously unreleased songs "Blue Bayou" and "Claudette". The HD DVD, released in 2007, and the Blu-ray, released in September 2008, include those two songs as well as the previously-unreleased song "Blue Angel" as a bonus track.

The DVD features standard definition 480i video in a standard 4:3 aspect ratio and three lossy soundtracks: Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1, and DTS 5.1

The Blu-ray features high definition 1080i video in a widescreen 16:9 aspect ratio and two lossless soundtracks: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and LPCM 2.0

  • Also features the lossy soundtrack Dolby Digital 5.1 and, by extension, the lossy DTS core of the DTS-HD MA

The HD DVD features high definition 1080i video in a widescreen 16:9 aspect ratio and at least one lossless soundtrack: Dolby TrueHD 5.1 Surround



Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Australia (ARIA)[1] 11× Platinum 165,000^
Canada (Music Canada)[2] Platinum 100,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[3] Platinum 50,000^
United States (RIAA)[4] Gold 50,000^
Black & White Night
Live album by Roy Orbison
Released February 3, 1989
Recorded September 30, 1987
Genre Rock'n'roll, rockabilly, country
Length 61:40
Label Orbison
Producer T-Bone Burnett
Roy Orbison chronology
Combo Concert: 1965 Holland
Black & White Night
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[5]

Black & White Night, the live album, was compiled and released posthumously from the television special. The album was released in February 1989 and included the songs "Blue Bayou" and "Claudette" that were cut from the original broadcast for time. However it did not include the song "Blue Angel" which was cut from the original broadcast for the same reason. The SACD/CD Hybrid Audio Disc includes "Blue Angel" as a bonus track - the SACD/CD Hybrid Disc is contained in a pack with the DVD released by Image Entertainment, USA (ID27700BDVD)

Track listing[edit]

All tracks composed by Roy Orbison and Joe Melson, except where indicated

  1. "Only the Lonely"
  2. "Dream Baby" (Cindy Walker)
  3. "Blue Bayou"
  4. "The Comedians" (Elvis Costello)
  5. "Ooby Dooby" (Dick Penner, Wade Moore)
  6. "Leah" (Orbison)
  7. "Running Scared"
  8. "Uptown"
  9. "In Dreams" (Orbison)
  10. "Crying"
  11. "Candy Man" (Fred Neil, Beverly "Ruby" Ross)
  12. "Go Go Go (Down the Line)" (Orbison)
  13. "Mean Woman Blues" (Claude Demetrius)
  14. "(All I Can Do is) Dream You" (Billy Burnette, David Malloy)
  15. "Claudette" (not on original 1989 LP) (Orbison)
  16. "It's Over" (Orbison, Bill Dees)
  17. "Oh, Pretty Woman" (Orbison, Bill Dees)
  18. "Blue Angel" (available on Blu-Ray)


TCB Band:

Guest performers:

Guest Vocalists:


  1. ^ "Music DVDs". ARIA Charts. Archived from the original on June 12, 2016. Retrieved June 12, 2016. 
  2. ^ "Canadian video certifications – Roy Orbison – Black And White Night". Music Canada. Retrieved June 12, 2016. 
  3. ^ "British video certifications – Roy Orbison – Black & White Night". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved June 12, 2016.  Enter Black & White Night in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select DVD in the field By Format. Select Platinum in the field By Award. Click Search
  4. ^ "American video certifications – Roy Orbison – Black & White Night". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved June 12, 2016.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Video Longform, then click SEARCH
  5. ^ Roy Orbison and Friends, A Black and White Night at the Allmusic

External links[edit]