I first met and worked with him many years ago. While chatting backstage, I told him about my favorite of his routines — a rarely performed pantomime of a clown applying and removing his makeup. It was a very poignant and powerful piece.
Fondly Remembering HARRY “THE HIPSTER” GIBSON…
… On His 102nd Birthday.
Frantic and eccentric … Rockin’ and Rollin’ twenty years before Elvis, Harry was a true master of boogie woogie piano — and every other musical style, too!
BILL DANA WAS AN ENORMOUS COMEDY TALENT – BOTH ON AND OFF CAMERA – FOR OVER A HALF CENTURY. HE WAS MY 1st “ESCORT” TO THE COMEDY STAGE.
This shouldn’t have to be a “day to vent” for me or anyone, but I really need to get something off my chest today.
It’s Memorial Day – and I’m concerned as I begin to wonder what’s happening to our country as it gradually declines into a self-centered “participation award” pop pseudo-culture. Continue reading “Memorial Day: The WHAT, WHY — and WHY NOT”
The Cult Entertainment Icon Celebrates Spring – and Wayne Powers!
Not unlike Soupy Sales and long before Pee Wee Herman, Floyd Vivino took New Jersey – and later the country – by storm with his cult “Kiddie TV Show” for adults, which ran for an amazing 24 years, spawning a record album and many singles.
TODAY WOULD HAVE BEEN HENRY MANCINI’S 93rd BIRTHDAY.
I can’t let today go by without acknowledging one of my greatest mentors and benefactors, never to be forgotten.
Upon arriving in L.A. back in 1976, I was greatly blessed to work for Henry, eventually administering all his music publishing for a short time before moving on to build my performance career – the original purpose in my relocating to the west coast.
TODAY IS HARRY MORGAN’S 102nd BIRTHDAY.
Depending on your age, you’ll probably remember actor Harry Morgan fondly from one or more of his over 100 films – or, on TV, from the original “Dragnet” (1951-1959), “December Bride” (1954-1959), “Pete and Gladys” (1960-1962) or “M*A*S*H” (1972-1983).
Harry also starred in another largely (but unfairly) forgotten TV series. In 1986, I had the great pleasure of guesting on “Blacke’s Magic,” a delightful but short-lived series starring Hal Linden and Harry Morgan – as a magician/sleuth and his father, who served as his assistant in his off-stage adventures.
He was a true original. Don Rickles, also known as “The Merchant of Venom,” was an equal-opportunity rapid-fire insult machine.
But his relentless barbs caused laughter, not tears – except for all those times we laughed so hard that tears came down our cheeks.
Today is the 87th birthday of one of my dear friends and colleagues for many years, Scoey Mitchlll. I wanted to be sure to remember my buddy’s birthday.
During the 1960s and 70s, Scoey was a trailblazer for African Americans in the world of standup comedy, appearing regularly on the Ed Sullivan Show and so many other variety shows and game shows. He also went on to blaze more trails, however, behind the camera as a successful writer / producer / director. Continue reading “Still Scoey After All These Years”
HAPPY 96th BIRTHDAY, Carol Channing, the great star of Broadway, film, television, recordings and even a Super Bowl half-time show!
The last time I saw Carol was quite a few years ago. I was performing at Vine St. Bar & Grill, a then-famous Hollywood jazz show room. We followed Anita O’Day, who loved our music and invited me to come see her perform the next night in Beverly Hills. Continue reading ““Hello Dolly” – An Evening with Carol Channing”