Back to 1957 we go… A fascinating time in pop culture history. Our timeline takes a look at September of that month – from the first week:
The TV ad business was up 20% from a year prior! That’s amazing news in any business (vertical) category (as we say today). Here’s what it says: The FCC reports that the television industry has revenues from broadcasting operations in 1956 of $896,900,000, up 20.4% from 1955…
Alan Freed and Dick Clark were the talk of music television – as each had their own ABC-TV shows.
The first pay-cable TV movie is “broadcast.”
Saturday Morning Kid’s TV Looked Like This:
CBS – On the Carousel, Captain Kangaroo, Mighty Mouse Playhouse, Susan’s Show, It’s a Hit! The Big Top, The Lone Ranger
And, that first week of September, 1957- Ford debuts – The Edsel. It’s a car that turned out to be the biggest bomb of all time. Two years later – Ford announced it was suspending production of the low-selling automobile. It had miscalculated.
Fascinating Facts – TV Trivia – Real Police Lineups Featured On NY TV Station…
Back we go to 1962… TV station WUHF-TV (channel 31) and the NYPD had a great idea – transmit police line-ups on the station – then, set up remote receivers in various locations throughout New York City - so the line-up could be viewed remotely.
Real criminals on TV. Yes, the “broadcasts” were scrambled at the time – another novelty – but – the idea was way ahead of its time. Apparently the idea was to make it easier for folks to identify “criminals” - and thus, get better results. Here’s the article – just click to read:
In Late 1975 – There Were Two Shows And A Hit Pop Single Called, “Saturday Night”
We Loved Our Saturday Nights Back In 1975
NBC-TV’s “Saturday Night Live” debuted in October of 1975. Originally, it was suppose to air Saturdays (after) the first week of each month. The original title of the show was simply, “Saturday Night” because – ABC-TV had just debuted “Saturday Night Live” with Howard Cosell – a week prior.
The Cosell show ran earlier in prime time and was the sports announcer’s shot at becoming a mainstream talkshow host. He’d been associated with ABC Sports and Monday Night Football – and somehow, convinced ABC – he should get a shot. He did. The debut “Saturday Night Live” with Howard Cosell featured hot pop artists, “The Bay City Rollers” who, interestingly, were about to have a hit titled, “Saturday Night.” The ratings for Cosell’s show were OK at first – then trailed off quickly.
In November, 1975, Cosell was quoted as saying, “The Saturday night time slot that ABC placed my variety show in has a deathly history. I inherited a cemetery.” By, the end of the 1975-1976 season, the show would be canceled.
First ads for NBC’s “Saturday Night” were few and far in-between. They usually came from record artists/record labels – who promoted upcoming appearances on the program. The first such ad for “Saturday Night” was from Art Garfunkel – who was making an appearance on the program – its second airing – on October 18, 1975. Also on that program, Paul Simon. “Saturday Night” made an immediate star out of sketch cast member Chevy Chase – the first to bolt for bigger and better things such as TV specials and movies. It quickly became a breeding ground for future movie stars such as Bill Murray and Eddie Murphy, among many others. Bolting actors almost became the bane of producer Lorne Michaels – although he wished them well, he really wasn’t happy when one of his stars left for other pastures.
So, in 1975, you have not one, but two, “Saturday Night” TV shows – but wait… The Bay City Rollers just released, “Saturday Night” – a top-10 record later in the year:
“Inside The NFL” with Jimmy The Greek, Irv Cross, Jayne Kennedy and Brent Musberger
From Len G – Mr. Pop – With so many sports shows on ESPN, the Bob Costas NFL program on HBO and all the networks, can you tell me the first sports “personality’ show that set the standard?
Mr. Pop History – I don’t think there’s any doubt it was “The NFL Today” on CBS, back during the 1970’s and into the 1980’s. Brent Musberger and Jimmy the Greek were just terrific. There was such a give and take energy and I’m not sure if these two got along off camera. Jimmy the Greek Snyder once punched Musberger in a bar. On the following program, they broke out an oversize boxing glove and laughed about it.
You get the picture – those dynamics made for a great sports show. Other members of the program included Irv Cross and over the years, folks such as Phyllis George and Jayne Kennedy. As good as some of these shows are today – and I love the Costas HBO program myself, I can’t help think it all began with the original “NFL Today.” It set the standard.
From Marty H – Mr. Pop History, I swear if you get this one, you are the best! For years, Rush Limbaugh has been using a piece of bumper music on his show. It’s very catchy, but it isn’t anything that was ever popular. I can identify every bit of music he uses on the show with this one exception. I’ve never heard him mention this piece of music – ever.
I know this is a long shot.
Mr. Pop History – For readers who don’t know, bumper music is the music bridging commercials to the next segment of a radio talk show. It’s the thing to do and Rush perfected the art. Now, to answer your question. I’m going to guess and this is a long shot indeed! I noticed over the years that Rush has played a tune, which absolutely bombed on the charts. I was given this copy by a radio station in 1981. It was one of those throwaway records stations get. I don’t listen to Rush a lot, but notice Rush is still playing the same tune, either with different artists or a different arrangement. But lets go back to this single. A group called the A’s released it in 1981 on the Arista label. The song is called “A Woman’s Got the Power.” Rush listeners should recognize this incredible piece of mystery bumper music. Rush Limbaugh played this version for years and years.