Tuesday, December 24, 2013
We LOVE the Holidays at KINESCOPE HD.
Like most tenacious television viewers, we prefer the white, fluffy snow that falls from the sky at the Yuletide season , to the electronic kind that says you've lost your cable connection.
Around Thanksgiving, here at KINESCOPE HD MASTER CONTROL, we rush to the cable guide to look for the latest holiday offerings from MICHEAL BUBLE or a classic film like WHITE CHRISTMAS.
One nostalgic, vintage video tradition that we celebrate, each year, is to watch one of the vibrant, upbeat, ANDY WILLIAMS HOLIDAY SPECIALS, produced at NBC's cavernous studios in Burbank,Ca.in the 60's.
Shot in LIVING COLOR ,through the warm, rich prism of RCA TK-41cameras, and mounted with vivid,meticulous production values, these shows offer a stylish frame for the wholesome portrait of a lyrical Family Christmas that Williams painted, in league with his Children, Siblings ( The Williams Bros.) , Guest starts and even his Parents.
So, here is a present of sorts to you, our few and loyal followers, proffered with our sincere thanks!!!
From the DEIDRE WILSON YOU TUBE site, a sampler of the very best ANDY WILLIAMS CHRISTMAS SHOWS. Enjoy!!!
HAVE A MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY, HEALTHY 2014!!!!!:)
Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Miss Patti Page was the "singing rage" in 1950's America.
Celebrated for her hit recording of THE TENNESSEE WALTZ, Patti Page was sweet as a mint julep on a sultry, summer day, with a pert crown of blond hair and an incandescent smile.
Patti Page had a husky singing voice that was tinged with honey.
Aquiline and approachable , she wasn't "the girl the next door," but she was the kindly, inviting, suburban neighbor that folks adored.
Combine those characteristics with a high octane vocal power and you can see why the venerable Oldsmobile Division of General Motors sponsored her CBS-TV series, THE BIG RECORD.
The monochrome, musical variety hour was mounted as direct competition to NBC's long-tenured YOUR HIT PARADE, which had been presenting the USA's favorite tunes since it debuted on radio in the 1930's. While YOUR HIT PARADE gauged the popularity of a song by tracking sales of records and sheet music plus radio airplay, THE BIG RECORD wanted to strike a more contemporary chord. It focused on hit, 45 RPM singles from a wide range of artists.
The Wednesday night songfest ( airing at 8PM EST) lasted only one year on the Tiffany Network, in the 1957-58 Television Season. Oldsmobile gave Patti Page a lift to ABC for another year of THE OLDSMOBILE SHOW STARRING PATTI PAGE.
One footnote : Video Visionary Gary Smith, who would, with producing partner Dwight Hemion, go on to create some of the most amazing and memorable variety programming in television history, served as scenic designer for THE BIG RECORD. Enjoy!!!!
Thursday, November 21, 2013
What better way to start the holiday season than spending Friday with Frank?
As Sinatra swung through the Sixties, his frequent specials were truly event television.
His February 1969, CBS COLOR concert, simply titled SINATRA, offered Old Blue Eyes in his musical prime.
Here, in a clip from the EliaIglesias1121 YOU TUBE site, is the Chairman of the Board musically presaging the Apollo 11 lunar landing, backed by Don Costa and the big band on FLY ME TO THE MOON.
Friday, November 8, 2013
Frank Sinatra was the King of The World , before Earth's continents were digitally connected.
His voice could be heard anywhere on the planet, long before the age of global media.
That sound, textured by Jack Daniels, lived between the grooves of a vinyl disc, in the waves emanating from a hometown Radio outlet, or embedded in the scan lines of a local TV Station.
Sinatra was Show Biz Royalty and Italy was his ancestral home.
During a 1962 global tour in support of Children's charities, Old Blues did a monochrome concert on RAI-TV, then Italy's primary television network.
The Chairman of the Board's singing voice , in this studio session backed by pianist Bill Miller's sextet, is unmistakable, exhilarating and authentic.
The same cannot be said for the scratchy baritone who dubbed his few spoken lines into Italian.
Frank does 12 standards , in abridged arrangements by Neil Hefti , who composed the scores for such eclectic video efforts as THE ODD COUPLE and BATMAN.
Here from the HONEYBEE7700 YOU TUBE site is FRANK SINATRA IN ITALY.
Sunday, October 20, 2013
American television viewers have always loved cowboys.
Especially the gunslingers who could fire off one liners with the same speed and accuracy as a six-gun.
From Hopalong Cassidy and Hoss Cartwight to Bat Masterson and Bret Maverick we like our gunsmoke tinged with giggles.
In the mid to late 1960's, as the nation faced what was ,perhaps, the greatest social upheaval since the Civil War, TV audiences rode off to the Old West in search of escape.
Shows like BONANZA, GUNSMOKE and THE BIG VALLEY offered a rare respite from the daily angst of American life, as portrayed on Network News.
At NBC, there was a sense that viewers wanted a Western that offered cowpokes who could lasso big laughs between barroom brawls.
And so was born LAREDO, a fast, furious, funny , two fisted Old West adventure, focusing on a quartet of Texas Rangers, who were wrangled by their long-suffering Captain.
Neville Brand, who made his reputation playing Al Capone on THE UNTOUCHABLES, evidenced a great gift for comedy, starring along with Peter Brown, William
Smith and Phillip Carey as their Captain.
Produced by UNIVERSAL STUDIOS and RONCOM FILMS , LAREDO was spun off on NBC-TV from its long running hit, THE VIRGINIAN.
The LIVING COLOR series lasted only two seasons, and didn't have enough episodes to meet the threshold for successful syndication. But it leaves a great legacy in action and laughter.
Here from the MORERADIOFILM AND TV YOU TUBE SITE, here is the November 4, 1965 episode of LAREDO, entitled THE GOLDEN TRAIL.
Friday, September 20, 2013
Network Television in 1960, occasionally, offered optimism and elegance among the endless array of cops and cowboys.
As we entered the kinetic sixties, there were approx.52,000,000 TV sets in a country with a population of 179,323,175.
While weekly Prime Time took us to courtrooms and crime scenes , the sheriff's office and the surgical suite, some special programming could meet the standards of excellence set by video visionaries like Frank Stanton and Pat Weaver.
CBS would showcase Leonard Bernstein's NY Philharmonic concerts for young people.
ABC offered the innovative, if Kafka-esqe ,comedy of Ernie Kovacs.
NBC's Chet Huntley and David Brinkley guided voters and viewers into President John Kennedy's Camelot.
But the apex of television as an art form ,that year, was a vibrant, captivating hour of song, dance, music and comedy in LIVING COLOR called , simply ,ASTAIRE TIME.
The sophisticated hour was the third and final installment in a trilogy of terpsichorean fun
starring and produced by the legendary star of stage, screen, radio and nightclubs, Fred Astaire.
His first effort, 1958's AN EVENING WITH FRED ASTAIRE, won every major accolade and was the first musical program to be shot in filmic style and edited on COLOR videotape.
The 1959 sequel , ANOTHER EVENING WITH FRED ASTAIRE was also celebrated by viewers , professionals and critics, alike.
1960's ASTAIRE TIME, featured Astaire's dance partner, Barrie Chase, plus Jazz legends Count Basie and Joe Williams.
It was directed with a by iconic, producer/director Greg Garrison, whose career credits include THE BUICK-BERLE SHOW and THE DEAN MARTIN SHOW.
Choreographer Hermes Pan , one of Astaire's favorite collaborators in cinema, brought a deft and sweeping look to dance numbers.
Here, from the AMPOPFILMS YOU TUBE site, is ASTAIRE TIME.
Sunday, September 15, 2013
In the "swingin' sixties," the creative team at NBC's KRAFT MUSIC HALL decided to offer viewers something hipper than the than country-western balladeers, Broadway crooners and recipes for caramel apples that were a staple of the long running, high budget, weekly hour of music & comedy.
They struck a deal to bring a sanitized, but star-studded version of the FRIARS CLUB's off the record and off color "roasts" of the most famous and infamous names in show business.
In 1968, Johnny Carson, at the zenith of his TONIGHT SHOW career, and spending more time in divorce court that most lawyers, was the target and one of his own comic heroes: the one, the only Groucho Marx, took lethally funny aim.
From the BERNIE OWEN YOU TUBE site, here is an excerpt of THE FRIARS ROAST JOHNNY CARSON on THE KRAFT MUSIC HALL.
Sunday, September 1, 2013
How many television professionals could effortlessly alternate between aggressively interviewing the most interesting and powerful people on Earth and satirizing them in acerbically comic performances?
The late Sir David Frost did just that for almost six decades.
The international media impresario died suddenly, yesterday, leaving an amazing legacy in video.
David Parradine Frost, the son of a Minister, was a Knight in his native England UK and a true Citizen of the World.
He was in the second wave of Television broadcasters. Frost was one of those who learned their craft in front of the camera as the medium evolved and matured, not behind the microphone in radio studios, as had their predecessors. His work resonated with British Baby Boomers, who were questioning the values and institutions that their parents saved in World War Two.
Frost forged a new genre in Television as the point man on the BBC's groundbreaking, comedy program, THAT WAS THE WEEK THAT WAS in the 1960's. He also hosted a subsequent, abortive, American version on NBC. While the show was rejected, Frost was embraced by stateside audiences.
A charter member of the international Jet Set, in the 1970's , Frost personified the frequent flyer. He hosted a daily, syndicated talk show for GROUP W BROADCASTING, based in New York, and actually commuted to the UK to star in a weekly interview program.
Like Playboy's Hugh Hefner, his most intimate, personal relationships made global headlines. He exemplified the MOD sensibilities of the immediate, post-MAD MEN era. He produced and hosted television shows in America, The UK and Australia. He also produced films and wrote books.
For this smart, savvy, multi-national, multi-media, multi-tasker, life, like television, was a global affair.
David Frost will best be remembered for eliciting a long-awaited apology for the Watergate affair from disgraced, former President Richard Nixon, during a landmark series of interviews he conducted with Mr. Nixon in 1976. That tense exchange was, itself, chronicled in a Broadway show and an Academy Award nominated film.
Frost began his storied career as a child of the burgeoning television generation and lived to be a respected, recognized elder statesman of international media.
Here, from ABC NEWS is David Muir with a remembrance of Sir David Frost. R.I.P.
Tuesday, August 13, 2013
In 1966, the mighty CBS Network resumed its annual ritual of convincing and cajoling TV's reigning redhead,Lucille Ball, to continue with her hit series on the TIFFANY NETWORK, THE LUCY SHOW.
This was a complex negotiation , each year, because they were dealing with two Lucy's.
One was the driven and demanding actress, who rehearsed every LUCY SHOW script until it looked like it was spontaneous to the large and loyal audience.
But, in addition to her comedic career, the "other" Lucy was the president of DESILU STUDIOS, the production company that she and her ex-husband, video visionary and pioneer producer, Desi Arnaz, founded in the early 1950's to launch I LOVE LUCY.
Here's a brief historical detour:
In the 1950's and 1960's, DESILU was to television , everything that MGM was to the movies in the 30's and 40's. No surprise. Both Ball and Arnaz had started their Hollywood careers acting in feature films. They actually met at RKO STUDIOS, which they purchased and folded into DESILU in 1957. DESILU was a small studio with the biggest hits on the little screen.
Most of their work landed on CBS. It was a prolific and profitable partnership.
But , back to 1966...
To keep Lucy on the air and in the fold, CBS offered a financial incentive that was tailor-made for a studio executive. Because of her show's formidable ratings ( high, but not I LOVE LUCY high), she was given a "development" fund. It was her choice to invest in the production of pilot episodes for new DESILU series, or keep the money for herself.
She elected to invest in DESILU's future and with it in two unique pilots. One was for NBC and was described by its creator, Gene Roddenbery as "WAGON TRAIN to the stars."
That show was STAR TREK. Do I need to say more?
Producer Bruce Geller had a different, but intriguing, vision for another show that would have the intensity and action of sophisticated "heist" films like RIFIFI or TOPKAPI, but set in the shadowy world of espionage against an international backdrop. DESILU took it to CBS.
It was called MISSION:IMPOSSIBLE.
Both pilots , shot in COLOR, made their way to the Fall 1966 Prime Time Schedule. Both made television history and both left amazing legacies that manifested themselves in feature films.
The legend and lore of STAR TREK fills volume after volume.
The heritage of MISSION:IMPOSSIBLE, like the operatives who work for the Impossible Mission Force, has a lower profile.
The terse and tense exposition of the show changed the architecture of action dramas on television. The stories were meticulously crafted and often had to be written backwards to make sense. It was well known that in the late 1960's President Lyndon Johnson was one of the show's biggest fans. The show had a pace and a presence that was Spartan but suspenseful. Propelled by Lalo Schifrin's pulsating theme and eccentric casting ( Wally Cox as the point-person in a Spy caper?:) , the show ran from 1966 to 1973 on CBS.
Here, from the DON FOLEY you tube site, here is the 1966 Pilot for MISSION:IMPOSSIBLE.
Thursday, August 1, 2013
Nobody could ever accuse Jerry Lewis of comedic cowardice.
His life and career are a testament to the risks and rewards of working in the Funny Business.
At what may have been the zenith of his career in the late 1950's, when he was globally adored by children and adults, coveted by Paramount Pictures, where the films he produced and in which he starred broke box office records,when he was in high demand by nightclubs and television networks, he decided that it was time to take a dramatic star turn on NBC-TV'S LINCOLN MERCURY STAR TIME.
Lewis, along with video veterans, producer Ernest D. Glucksman ,Director Ralph Nelson and writer Oliver Crawford crafted an updated version of the classic Al Jolson film, the first talking picture, THE JAZZ SINGER for the anthology series.
Co-starring with Anna Maria Alberghetti, Molly Picon, Eduard Franz , Joey Faye and Del Moore, Lewis brought his own unique talents to a modernized telling of the Sampson Raphaelson story of a performer who faces a moral choice between his Father and his Faith or Stardom and Success.
It was recorded at NBC Burbank on 2 inch, COLOR videotape and manually edited. The production design and detailed sets seem to stand the test of time. You judge the performances.
Here , from the Joao Antônio Franz dos Santos YOU TUBE site, is THE JAZZ SINGER.
Saturday, July 20, 2013
02:56 UTC - THE MOMENT THAT THE WHOLE WORLD WATCHED HISTORY UNFOLD ON TELEVISION - THE MOON LANDING - ALMOST EVERY BROADCASTER ON EARTH - 7/20/69
Tonight , billions of people around the globe will look up at the night sky and , perhaps, they will notice the Moon, glowing in among the stars.
A comparative fraction will stop to recall that on this date in 1969, at 10:56 PM EDT, 02:56 UTC, and 109420 into the mission of APOLLO 11, Commander Neil Armstrong descended the ladder from
The Lunar Module EAGLE to become the first human being in history to set foot on another celestial body.
It was the night that Americans walked on the Moon.
At that electrifying moment on that steamy summer night, 44 years ago, an estimated 600 million people watched television in homes and churches and bars and union halls and in parks and on beaches. Television took us from the launch pad , to mission control , to the white house and to the Moon.
Video Viewers who watched through the night, saw the grainy, jittery images of Armstrong , who, sadly, passed away in 2102 and Lunar Module Pilot ,Buzz Aldrin ,on television as they surveyed the Sea of Tranquility. Aldrin called the Moon a place of "magnificent desolation."
The third member of the APOLLO 11 team, Command Module Pilot Michael Collins orbited the moon , as his partners walked it's surface. For a period, as he guided the ship around the dark side of Earth's only , natural satellite, he was out of communications contact with his colleagues and with NASA's Mission Control at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas
In the hours that followed the amazing moonwalk, citizens of the world put aside their political, religious and social differences to celebrate the realization of a dream as old as mankind.
I have not heard much on this 44th anniversary of this daring , dazzling accomplishment, which fulfilled the mandate of a martyred President .It was John Kennedy who set the goal of putting a man on the moon before end of the 1960's.The American Lunar landing all but ended the so-called RACE FOR SPACE, with , what was then the worlds only other Super Power, the Soviet Union.
Tonight, we should take a moment to honor those who walked the powdery lunar landscape, reflect on this superlative achievement and wonder when mankind can reach for its most noble dreams and the stars , again.
Here , from the ZELCO321 YOU TUBE site, is an excerpt of ABC NEWS coverage of this wondrous moment.
Monday, July 1, 2013
That simple, declarative statement has been a clarion call for CBS viewers since the Tiffany Network's Los Angeles Broadcast Facility opened its doors ... and the cavernous studios behind them ... in 1952.
One of the most prolific and proficient production centers in the history of the medium, TV City has been home to drama, comedy, sci-fi, music, soap operas, game shows , news , commercials and every other genre in video.
Even though CBS was vanquished by mortal rival NBC in the 1953 battle to set the technical standard in COLOR television, there was a time in the mid-1950's that CBS experimented with tinted TV, using RCA equipment.
At least two stages in the CBS complex at 7800 Beverly Boulevard in L.A's Fairfax section were outfitted with lumbering RCA TK-41 Cameras and supplemental lighting equipment required for polychromatic production.
A wide range of shows on the CBS schedule were produced at Television City in , what CBS branded as, FULL COLOR between 1954 and 1958.
In 1959, CBS scion William Paley decided that he would no longer spend his money buying equipment from his long-time competitor, RCA/NBC's David Sarnoff.
CBS shut down regularly scheduled, COLOR programming until the Fall of 1966, when all three of America's major broadcast networks delivered their prime-time programs in COLOR.
But reflecting on the mid-fifties at CBS, CHRYSLER'S SHOWER OF STARS is a prime example of the CBS COLOR STRATEGY.
A monthly mix of music, comedy and variety, usually hosted by the incomparable Jack Benny, it alternated with CHRYSLER'S CLIMAX, a series of suspenseful dramas and mysteries.
While both shows were produced LIVE at Television City, SHOWER OF STARS was offered as a CBS COLORCAST, once a month.
Here from the SCREENSTAGEANDSONG YOU TUBE SITE , is a warm and wholesome comedy, based on a Broadway hit. Jack Benny does his monthly start turn, with a versatile cast in TIME OUT FOR GINGER.
Monday, June 24, 2013
In the early 1950's, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis did something of which Hitler, Mussolini and Stalin only Dreamed:
They conquered the world.
Not a shot was fired and there were no casualties in a comic revolution
that captured most of the planet.
The unlikely paring offered audiences a voluble and volatile mix
of slapstick antics and street-smart banter that was too big for
any 12 inch , TV screen to contain.
If you met them, before they were a team, you might wonder how they
could compliment each other in front of a camera or behind a microphone.
Martin, an alluring crooner with impeccable comic timing and Lewis,
a kinetic comedian , whose adolescent demeanor, on stage, belied
the burgeoning auteur within.
They liked each other personally and shared the same comic sensibility.
When the legendary Atlantic City nightclub impresario, Skinny D-Amato,
booked them in his renowned 500 CLUB as two single acts ... Martin singing and Lewis performing
a record pantomime... it was clear that they needed each other.
After bombing, back to back, D'Amato, who was an entertainment visionary, told them that they could work the stage together or each could leave the club alone.
That was 1946 and in the turbulent decade that followed, they became the biggest stars on Film, in Nightclubs and on Television.
In 1956, they went their separate ways after making millions of people laugh and making show business history.
The story of their decision to "divorce " is a show business tragedy come true.
The act and their relationship succumbed to a lethal mix of ego and pride, jealousy and infighting.
Both went on to incredibly successful individual careers.
But together, they were invincible and incomparable.
They also made a lot of money for America's best nightclubs, the nation's largest theaters, Paramount Pictures, NBC Radio, NBC Television and their TV sponsor, The Colgate Palmolive Company.
While the wild physicality of their act didn't translate well to radio, their monthly, video adventures as part of the rotating constellation of stars on NBC-TV's expansive and expensive, COLGATE COMEDY HOUR, made for some of the most spontaneous moments in the mediums early years.
Here, from the DONAZIFY YOU TUBE site is the 5/2/54 episode of their Sunday night show, which celebrates the eighth anniversary of MARTIN AND LEWIS performing together.
Saturday, June 15, 2013
THE DAY TV NEWS SET ITS EYES ON THE SKIES - THE FIRST AMERICAN LAUNCHED INTO SPACE - NBC-TV - CIRCA MAY 5, 1961
It took less than 15 minutes for Astronaut Alan Shepard, supported by thousands of NASA technicians, government contractors and military personnel, to accomplish a daring dream of human adventure and scientific exploration, that would come to typify the baby-boom generation's sense of bravado : putting an American into space.
Shepard, a decorated Naval aviator and an accomplished engineer, was among the first class of 7 Astronauts who would risk
their lives to launch the America's manned-spaceflight program, NASA's Project Mercury.
On May 5th, 1961, in the face of uncooperative weather and technical challenges, Shepard's Freedom 7 capsule , mounted atop a Redstone guided missile, thundered into space from Cape Canaveral, Florida.
It was a sub-orbital flight of 15 minutes duration, but it was this country's first step into space.
It came at just the right time for a nation was that unsure it could find the footing to take its first steps toward the stars. The Soviets had just put Cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin into Earth Orbit, while American missiles, designed by German scientists who had emigrated to the US after World War II, kept exploding on the launch pad.
Shepard's flight gave America the confidence to move forward and upward into space.
At NBC News, division president Robert Kitner had launched his own experiment in broadcast journalism, the INSTANT NEWS SPECIAL.
His innovative vision was to produce wide-ranging, LIVE, special coverage of major stories as they develped, that would culminate in a prime-time, news program.
The Race For Space Between the United States and what was then the Soviet Union, offered the perfect opportunity to test this new and vibrant form of journalism.
While the US and the Soviets battled for supremacy in space, NBC and CBS ran the race for ratings.
At NBC, the smart and savvy Frank McGee anchored the network's television coverage of Project Mercury with superlative support from radio correspondent Jay Barbaree, whose daily beat was the manned space flight program.
At CBS News, anchorman Walter Cronkite owned the story. In years to come, he would fly with Astronauts in simulated weightless conditions and is alleged to have inquired about the possibility of being the first Journalist in space.
This was also one of the few stories on whichthe fledging ABC News division would shine, based on the expertise of the late Jules Bergman, who was as knowledgeable about NASA and the science of space fight
' as any Astronaut.
Just as Project Mercury was a Templar for the missions to the Moon that followed, NBC's coverage of early space exploration laid the foundation for major, breaking news coverage at the network level and for cable news.
Below, from the MR. DAN BEAUMONT YOU TUBE site,is a rare excerpt from an NBC NEWS SPECIAL REPORT WITH FRANK McGEE on THE FLIGHT OF FREEDOM 7.
Thursday, June 6, 2013
The striking and evocative PHILCO-GOODYEAR TELEVISION THEATER production of MARTY, written by the prolific and profound Paddy Chayefsky for NBC,is truly a landmark in network drama.
The one hour episode of the renowned, award-winning anthology series was produced by the iconic Fred Coe and Directed ,LIVE, by video virtuoso, Delbert Mann on May24, 1953 in B&W, at NBC's 30 Rockefeller Center Studios.
Early television viewers and critics lauded this deftly woven story of an angst ridden , Italian butcher from Brooklyn, who is in search of love, while tormented by well meaning friends and family.
The Teleplay speaks for itself.It is a templar of Television's so-called GOLDEN AGE OF LIVE DRAMA.
While the video version starred Rod Steiger, it was Ernest Borgnine's portrayal of a middle-aged man who is struggling to find romance and self-esteem, in the film version that won an Academy Award.
From the OLD MOVES RADIO & TV YOU TUBE site, in its entirety , is MARTY. Enjoy!!!
Monday, May 20, 2013
THREE OF A KIND - FRANK, DEAN & BING - TIMEX PRESENTS THE FRANK SINATRA SHOW - CIRCA OCTOBER 19, 1958
Are there two words in all of show business that still signal electrifying entertainment more than "Frank Sinatra?"
Still holds true, long since his amazing voice was silenced.
On October 19 1958, Old Blue-eyes starred in one of a series of music and comedy specials on ABC-TV (referred to then, by some, as the Anemic Broadcasting Company:) he'd been hosting for Timex watches since the Fall of 1957.
The production values, were by 1950's standards, spartan in their elegance.
The music was vibrant and vital.
The hour is replete with favorites from the songbook of Sinatra standards.
The show credits are impressive, with iconic songwriters Jimmy Van Heusen and Sammy Cahn serving as executive producers.
Be sure to check-out the LIVE commercial with spokesman John Cameron Swayze!!:)
Here, in LIVING MONOCHROME, from the VISO MUSIC YOU TUBE site is TIMEX PRESENTS THE FRANK SINATRA SHOW, a high voltage, Eisenhower- Era romp starring Frank, Dean Martin, Bing Crosby and Mitzi Gaynor.
Friday, May 3, 2013
CBS TELEVISION CITY was, at the dawn of television, a brilliant solution to a daunting problem.
New York City studio space for local and network television was ,all but, maxed out in the early 1950's,as production for the nascent medium grew at an amazing pace.
20 hours per week of programming for the Tiffany Network was being produced by Philadelphia's WCAU-TV alone,plus a wide-range of shows that were originating from Chicago
As the coaxial cable connected America's East and West coasts, the opportunity to expand facilities presented itself.
CBS scion William Paley and his company's visionary president, Dr. Frank Stanton,crafted a plan to build a groundbreaking, vibrant, expansive Los Angeles facility that would not only meet current video needs, but offer options for growth in the years ahead.
CBS TELEVISION CITY opened on November 16th, 1952.
In the Fall of 1953, the legendary Edward R. Murrow and his SEE IT NOW documentary team prduced the rare look at CBS TELEVISION CITY that posted below.
The program is in two clips from the CBSMEDIA YOU TUBE site. Enjoy!!!!
Saturday, April 20, 2013
WHEN POLISHED BRASS SHONE BRIGHT ON TELEVISION - HERB ALPERT & THE TIJUANA BRASS - CBS-TV - CIRCA APRIL 24,1967
The soundtrack of American Life in the 1960's and 70's is replete with musical performers who weren't into hard rock ,heavy metal, the Mersey Beat, Motown, R&B or, even bubblegum music, which was kind of pre-fab, top forty.
Their upbeat, energetic offerings were more like cotton candy and comprised "The Sound of Today."
These artists included Glen Campbell , Bobbie Gentry and one of the most beloved, super - groups of the time,Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass.
Most of these performers crossed over to star in television specials or series.
Herb Alpert and his band were at the top of the popular music charts when they teamed with the incomparable creative of
Gary Smith and Dwight Hemion, the pair who had first brought Barbara Streisand to television.
They made beautiful music...and television...together.
On April 24th 1967, Alpert & company starred in SINGER PRESENTS HERB ALPERT AND THE TIJUANA BRASS, in Color , on CBS-TV.
It features an amazing (given the technology of the time) , airborn, opening sequence in in a ground-breaking musical special, that took color cameras and the talent out of the studio and on location. It also wove a linear, comic narrative about the group and its history to bring a filmic quality to the storytelling.
The effort was rewarded with high ratings and 4 EMMY noinations.
Here is a monochome version of the entire show, including commercials for sponsor Singer Sewing Machines, thanks to the FRANK DRACMAN YOU TUBE site.
You'll also see Alpert's second special, THE BEAT OF THE BRASS, which aired on April 22, 1968.
Saturday, April 6, 2013
THE BUTTON DOWN MIND IN PRIME TIME - BOB NEWHART DOES STAND-UP ON THE JACK PAAR SHOW - NBC-TV - CIRCA 5/29/65
In the late 1950's and early 1960's Jack Paar was network television's avatar of angst.
As the second host of TONIGHT on NBC (following Steve Allen and preceding Johnny Carson), each weeknight. Paar convened the smartest cocktail party that anyone ever watched between their feet on a portable tv in the bedroom.
A career broadcaster, who bounced from announcing in local radio to acting in a short film career and a then on to become the first king of late night TV,
Paar lived by his wits , and worked on an emotional high-wire.
Urbane and erudite, he introduced some of America's brightest comedians to an appreciative audience.
Bill Cosby, Jonathan Winters, Woody Allen Allan Sherman and so many more were guests on TONIGHT and his NBC prime time hour, THE JACK PAAR SHOW.
Here, on the THE JACK PAAR SHOW, and from the STANDAPARTCOMEDY you tube site, is the deft and daft humor of Bob Newhart.
Sunday, March 3, 2013
There were only a few scant years between the dawn of televsion and having television shows at dawn.
But, in 1948, a daring, multi-media experiment yielded an historic first, when television brought breakfast-time radio from the kitchen into the liivng room.
Morning radio shows that launched the day for listeners with a familiy of players behind the mic, offering entertainment,news and weather were a broadcast mainstay in the 1930,40's and 50's.
One of the most popular programs was THE BREAKFAST CLUB WITH DON MCNEILL, originating from Chicago and beamed LIVE, each weekday at 8AM, on ,first, the NBC BLUE NETWORK, which later became the ABC RADIO NETWORK and subsequently on ABC's AMERICAN ENTERTAINMENT NETWORK,to millions of American homes.
In big cities and small towns, the happy mix of upbeat banter ,popular music and homespun humor was a welcome addition to the breakfast menu.
The richly mounted, wake-up call premiered on NBC BLUE in June 23, 1933 and ran contiuously , with McNeil hosting, through December 27, 1968.
But, four years before Televisionary Sylvester "Pat" Weaver devised and debuted TODAY on NBC-TV, on May 5th 1948, an experimental "simulcast," co-produced by ABC RADIO and the struggling DuMONT TELEVISION NETWORK, put Don McNeil's LIVE show on TV and Radio.
The show was being produced on location in Philadelphia because, both, the 1948 Republican and Democratic National Conventions were being held in America's cradle of liberty.
Here, from the JASON 1920 YOU TUBE SITE is a rare kinescope of that historic broadcast.
Friday, February 22, 2013
Imagine looking back in time to see the future that awaits you.
This is not a mind-bending treatise positing some manner of chronological chaos theory.
It is a prescient prognostication in a segment from the 1967, CBS NEWS, documentary series, entitled THE 21st CENTURY and hosted by the venerable anchorman, Walter Cronkite.
Watch this clip and compare the projected technology depicted with the computer you use for work or play in your own home, to the HDTV,big screen television you watch or the digital,climate controls that provide heat or air conditioning.
While the technology shown may be primitive, the 1960's vision for the home of the 2000's is close to accurate.
Here from the Brian Ahier YOU TUBE site, is an excerpt from THE 21st CENTURY.
Saturday, January 26, 2013
KRAFT SUSPENSE THEATER on NBC-TV, from 1963-1965 was an archetypal production of ,what was then , Hollywood's largest television assembly line, UNIVERSAL CITY STUDIOS.
It was a weekly, hour-long, dramatic anthology that was pre-empted once a month for PERRY COMO'S KRAFT MUSIC HALL, but the series fulfilled a more important role for, both, the studio and the network , acting as an incubator in which to cultivate pilots for potential new series.
Not many made it past their initial airing.
Of the 59 episodes which were produced, in the end, only one episode spawned a series on the NBC schedule, RUN FOR YOUR LIFE with Ben Gazzarra.
Like so many efforts of an eclectic nature, some editions of the show offered engrossing television, while some were simply, passable, prime-time fare.
One outing that distinguished itself, was the April 2, 1964 episode, entitled ONCE UPON A SAVAGE NIGHT.
Designed to be a pilot for a police drama, it was a taut, vibrant , life and death, race against the clock set in Chicago.
Unlike so many of the stories produced for the show, this episode was shot on location in the Windy City.
Like so many editions of KRAFT SUSPENSE THEATER, it was crafted by talented people as the genesis of their careers, who would go on to fame in feature films.
The series theme was composed by a young staffer in the studios music department named John Williams. He would , years later, find his success scoring a movie set in a galaxy far, far away from UNIVERSAL CITY.
The surprise is that the director was ROBERT ALTMAN!! Yes , that Robert Altman, who like Steven Spielberg was learning his craft directing, weekly episodic television on the stages of the UNIVERSAL LOT.
You'll also see future sitcom superstar, Ted Knight, in a serious role.
And grab a pencil, as KRAFT spokesman , and legendary NBC announcer , Ed Herlihy, offers some tasty recipes!!!
Here, from the GR160289 is KRAFT SUSPENSE THEATER'S production of ONCE UPON A SAVAGE NIGHT.
Sunday, January 13, 2013
In the 1950's , Westerns had the drop on television, pardner!!
On the three major networks, Cowboys rode the 21- inch range, the law of that land was enforced by a solitary, stoic hero with a Colt .45 loaded with blanks and the Old West was only as big as the Universal back lot.
One of the most popular shows of TV's halcyon Era was NBC-TV's TALES OF WELLS FARGO.
Westerns may have resonated with the post-war audience and their baby-boomer children because it depicted a weekly morality play in glorious monochrome.
A battle between good and evil unfolding against the rustic canvas of the American Prairie.
Starring the courtly Dale Robertson,and sponsored by such iconic brands as Pall Mall Cigarettes and GM's Buick Motorcar Division, this two-fisted adventure portrayed the daring cases of Jim Hardie, an agent of the Wells Fargo Company.
Train robberies, stage coach chases, barroom brawls and romance with mysterious beauties were the stuff that propelled TALES OF WELLS FARGO to the top of the ratings.
As LIVING COLOR became more important to NBC and it's parent, COLOR-TV manufacturer, RCA, TALES OF WELLS FARGO expanded to an hour-long COLORCAST for it's final seasons.
Robertson became one of television's most bankable stars and never strayed far from the Western genre, going on to play the lead in ABC-TV'S THE IRON HORSE (1966-67).
Here, from the THE VIDEO PRISMS YOU TUBE SITE, is the December 2, 1961 episode of TALES OF WELLS FARGO, IN LIVING COLOR.