Posts in Category: Broadcast History

TeleTales #30…1955 Prime Time Schedule

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TeleTales #30…1955 Prime Time Schedule

In February of 1955, The Dumont Network ceased to exist and that left the Big Three…ABC, CBS and NBC. Here’s a look at what was on back then. Interesting that ABC and CBS ran their 15 minute network news shows at 7:15 while NBC stuck to it’s original 7:45 time.

Almost everything here was done from New York or on film, but I see a few live shows from Hollywood here…the 15 minute “Dinah Shore Show” was form KNBH, “The Red Skelton Show” was from Television City. The Johnny Carson variety show was from KNXT and “The Colgate Variety Hour” alternated between NYC and LA. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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TeleTales #29…The First Handheld Color Camera Use, ABC

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TeleTales #29…The First Handheld Color Camera Use, ABC

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_kh8JurXv2c&feature=youtu.be
At the link is a clip from November 11, 1967 showing the camera in use by ABC at the UCLA – USC game in Los Angeles.

ABC had modified the Ampex creation which, as seen below, was meant to include their portable VR 3000 video tape recorder. Instead, they have taken the case and put a modified camera control unit in the backpack and cabled it to the truck. Later, they came up with a small wireless transmitter for the Ampex rig. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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TeleTales #28…Speaking Of ABC News

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TeleTales #28…Speaking Of ABC News

Here’s the an election set in Studio TV 2 at ABC New York with Peter Jennings down front. The evening news show comes from TV 3. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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TeleTales #27…Ted Koppel At ABC Washington

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TeleTales #27…Ted Koppel At ABC Washington

Did you know he was born in England and was 13 when his family moved to the US? Koppel had a brief stint as a teacher before being hired as a copyboy at WMCA Radio in New York. In June 1963, he became the youngest correspondent ever hired by ABC Radio News, working on the daily Flair Reports program.

In 1966, Koppel worked for ABC Television as a war correspondent during the Vietnam War. He returned in 1968 to cover the campaign of Richard Nixon, before becoming Hong Kong bureau chief, and US State Department correspondent.

I think this picture is from the early 80s. The camera is an Ikegami HK 312 E model. The big bulge on the side is the new Triax adapter. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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The View From Walter Cronkite’s News Desk…Ultra Rare!

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The View From Walter Cronkite’s News Desk…Ultra Rare!

By request, here is a shot you’ll only find here. Thanks to Glenn Mack, this is a look at what Walter Cronkite looked out on from behind his desk in what was then, CBS Studio 33.

I think the engineers are removing older style prompters and replacing them with a newer version on the two Norelcos in the studio. The camera on the right is mounted on a rare German made movie camera tripod…the only one I know of with the ability to be raised and lowered on the fly, but not on camera. I think this is 1973. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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Leonard Goldenson Built Tiny ABC Into Daring Winner

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A Rare Article On Leonard Goldneson…Driving Force At ABC

You don’t hear much about this man, but to do what he did, you have to be a pretty sharp cookie. Here a three page look at his leadership of ABC from yesterday’s Investor’s Business Daily. -Bobby Ellerbee

http://news.investors.com/management-leaders-in-success/012615-736262-leonard-goldenson-built-a-winner-at-abc.htm

Leonard Goldenson Built Tiny ABC Into Daring Winner

Although overshadowed in the public eye by William Paley of CBS and David Sarnoff of NBC, Leonard Goldenson raised struggling ABC to parity with the two big networks.
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Game Shows Special…Historic Look Back From 1984

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To Top Off The Game Shows, Take Look At This Special From 1984

Carl Reiner hosts this hour special on the game shows from NBC Burbank with lots of help from hosts and panel members of many of the top (and bottom) game shows. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A6Xd6v9Je44 part 1

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uFx4csBFYrg part 2

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Glxs9cEp8Zg part 3

no part 4

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8F6tFHj4Wgw part 5

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8YSEPr23o50 part 6

Original air date: February 27, 1984 Network: NBC Channel: KNBC-4 City, State: Los Angeles, Ca This was a special hosted by Carl Reiner covering TV Game Show…
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By Request…Game Show Pictures #3: “Jeopardy!”

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By Request…Game Show Pictures #3: “Jeopardy!”

Behind the game board in 8G. I think there were three game boards, units A, B and C which were loaded before the show and wheeled into place as the show progressed. On the set there was a curtain that covered the board.

You don’t see it in the photo, but all the cardboard cards in the squares had cloth tabs stapled to the top of them. The stagehand behind the board grabbed the small wooden handle at the top of the metal door and pulled the top back slightly. grabbed the tab and pulled the card out. The back of the door was spring loaded and snapped back holding the question card in place. After the question was answered, that card was removed leaving a solid blue one in its place. There is a photo of the card and tab in the comment section below. Thanks to Glenn Mack for the photo and to Mark Ogden for the workings of the board. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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By Request…Game Show Pictures #2: “Jeopardy!”

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By Request…Game Show Pictures #2: “Jeopardy!”

From it’s start in 1964 till 1973, the show came from NBC Studio 8G which is seen here. The last year of so of the show came from 6A as seen in today’s first post. Thanks to Glenn Mack for the photo. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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KTLA Anniversary Show…Incredible History Of All Los Angeles TV

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In Case You Missed This…MUST SEE EARLY TV HISTORY

I posted this earlier this week but I don’t think a lot of people actually took the time to take a look at this incredible compilation of the early history of television in Los Angeles. THIS IS ONE OF THE BEST HISTORY LESSONS EVER! Really! Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

http://mediaburn.org/video/ktla-anniversary-show/

[KTLA anniversary show] — Media Burn Archive

Anniversary show for the station with clips from classic programs.
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Hurley’s Bar a/k/a….”NBC Studio 1H”

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“NBC Studio 1H”…Hurely’s Bar

As you can see in the photo below, Hurley’s Bar (which opened in 1892) was just a half a block away from NBC’s studio entrance, making it the nearest watering hole for everyone from stars to stage hands. It became the favorite for radio, television, newspaper and sports celebrities as well as tourists and midtown workers.

The old-fashioned saloon atmosphere, as well as the convenient location in Rockefeller Center, made Hurley’s a favorite. Liz Trotta noted “You never knew who would be standing next to your lifting elbow at Hurley’s. Jason Robards, Jonathan Winters, jazz musicians from the local clubs and the ‘Tonight’ show, starlets, football players, the lot.”

Johnny Carson made the Hurley name nationally familiar while he did his show live from Rockefeller Center. It was the bar in all of his Ed McMahon drinking jokes. David Letterman did several on-air visits to the bar. NBC technicians haunted the place so regularly that among themselves it was known as Studio 1-H.

Hurley’s was known as a place where status was left at the door. Mayor John Lindsay stopped in once, only to be hissed by the patrons. When Henry Kissinger and two bodyguards got noisy, they were ejected by the bartender “for rowdy behavior.”

But this is only half of a great “David & Goliath” story.

The bar had been here since 1892 and had always done well, even during prohibition when a florist shop was used to disguise the bar and it’s new back door.

In 1930, John D. Rockefeller, Jr. had begun aggressively buying up a staggering twenty-two acres of midtown property, right in the middle of Fifth Avenue’s most exclusive district, for a seemingly implausible project: Rockefeller Center. One by one he purchased buildings from Fifth to Sixth Avenue between 48th and 51st Streets. In the stranglehold of the Great Depression, none but the city’s wealthiest property owners could resist the offer to convert real estate to cash.

None except John F. Maxwell, grandson of John F. Boronowsky who owned the three story building at the opposite end of the block from Hurley’s and, of course, the feisty Irishmen themselves. In June 1931 Maxwell sent word to Rockefeller that he would not sell “at any price.”

Construction had already began on the gargantuan Art Deco complex of nineteen buildings on May 17, 1930. The block of 49th to 50th Streets, Sixth Avenue to 5th Avenue was eventually demolished, leaving only the two brick Victorian buildings standing on opposite corners of a devastated landscape.

The RCA Building—70 stories tall—rose around Hurley’s, diminishing the bar building only in height. But nothing in New York City is permanent and in 1979 Hurley Brothers and Daly was sold. Journalist William Safire spoke for New Yorkers in an article mourning the loss. The mahogany bar was removed to a Third Avenue restaurant and, as Nancy Arum wrote in her letter to New York Magazine that year “a pretend old-fashioned bar now stands where the real old-fashioned bar once was.”

The pretend old-fashioned bar took the name Hurley’s and, most likely, tourists never noticed the change. But proximity, tradition, or habit still brought the Rockefeller Center workers and celebrities into the bar until September 2, 1999. That night owner Adrien Barbey served the last glass of beer in the bar that had stood at Sixth Avenue and 49th Street for 102 years.

Today, Hurley’s is a bakery and the building at the other end of the block is a 9 West store. The 1931 photo on the right shows 6th Avenue with it’s elevated train (yellow). Hurely’s is in the red circle and 46th Street is in aqua. The other building left standing on the 6th Avenue corner is the space that is now a 9 West store. The 11 story NBC studio building is just behind Hurley’s.
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Just In! New Photo Of The Center Theater

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Just In! New Photo Of The Center Theater

There are not many photos of Radio City Music Hall’s little sister, The Center Theater, so we are glad to have this. This photo was taken in February of 1946 and shows the last parts of the elevated train tracks being removed from 6th Avenue.

The Center was at the corner of 6th Avenue and 49th Street. Just above the marquee you can see the famous Hurley’s Bar nestled against 30 Rock’s front, and at 50th Street, there is the big sister. On the 49th Street side, you can see the top of the 11 story NBC studio building.

NBC took over The Center Theater in November of 1950 and used it until US Rubber bought it and the row of low buildings to build an 18 story office tower. That was the only original Rockefeller Plaza building ever demolished. Thanks to Jodie Peeler for the find! Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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January 25, 1915…The First Transcontinental Phone Call

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January 25, 1915…The First Transcontinental Phone Call Made

100 years ago today, Alexander Graham Bell (shown below) in New York placed a call to his long time assistant, Thomas Watson in San Francisco at 4 PM Eastern time. The second transcontinental call to San Francisco was made at 4:30 over an even greater distance from Jekyll Island, Georgia, which had to be routed through Boston.

From the New York Times, here is their report of that day’s historic activates. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

#article” target=”_blank”>http://www.nytimes.com/learning/general/onthisday/big/0125.html #article


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January 25, 1961…The First Live Presidential Press Conference

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January 25, 1961…The First Live Presidential Press Conference

Instead of presenting the historical footage, I’ve included a short compilation that reminds us of JFK’s easy style in these press conferences. He was the first American president to really understand television and how to use it to his advantage, which started during the campaign.

Fifty four years ago today, President Kennedy held the first ever live presidential news conference. It originated from the auditorium of the State Department and was carried live on both radio and television. It was the first of sixty three he would give.

Prior to this, live radio broadcasts by a President were scripted speeches. In press conferences prior to Kennedy, questions were submitted in advance and were not asked by reporters nor broadcast live, but were recorded on film for television and on audio tape for radio news. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mXDLLUOxmsY

The wit and humor of President John F. Kennedy is revealed in this series of clips from his various press conferences.
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A Wonderful Minute From NBC NY and Burbank & Good Comments

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By Request…A Wonderful Minute From NBC NY and Burbank & Good Comments[fb_vid id=”732580183446200″]Short But Sweet…NBC NY & Burbank Quick Shots, Early 70s

Thanks to our friend John Schipp, we are able to see a little over a minute’s worth of rare footage inside 30 Rock and Burbank.

This is from a behind the scenes episode of NBC’s ‘The Go Show’ which aired briefly around 1973. It was a unique show, shot mostly in the field with RCA TK 76 ENG cameras and recorded on Ampex VR-3000 VTRs, a portable 2-inch quad machine.

With a little help from NBC’s Dennis Degan, here’s what we are seeing. “The first two shots look like Studio 5H Control Room, originally built in 1954. The TCR-100 (tape cartridge machine) shown in the clip was Machine #31, the one furthest to the left in a line of six TCR-100’s at NBC-NY. My maintenance shop was on the other side of the wall seen in the shot. The clip jumps to Burbank and Studio 4’s elephant doors, then home to ‘The Flip WIlson Show’ and ‘Midnight Special’. You can also get a glimpse of the set for ‘Sanford & Son’ which I think was in Studio 3. Then we flip back to NY for a shot of Frank Blair at his news desk, most likely Studio 3K and I think the closing moments are in Studio 4 again. I believe the clip was probably made in 1973. The TCR’s were first brought to market no earlier than 1972.” Comment, enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee
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This Just In! Ultra Rare Photos Of The Colonial Theater Marquee

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This Just In! Ultra Rare Photos Of The Colonial Theater Marquee

Thanks to Tom Gauer, here are two rare photos of The Colonial with “The Price Is Right” on the marquee. These are the first, and only two images I have ever seen of the outside during the NBC/RCA color years which began in early 1952.

Before this, the only outside shot we had of The Colonial was this 1936 photo when it was an RKO movie theater. Here’s the history of the building that housed NBC’s first ever commercial color television facility.

The Charleston (dance) was born here…at 1887 Broadway.

The theater was built in 1905 as the Colonial Music Hall by Fred Thompson and Elmer Dundy, the same duo behind the Hippodrome Theater and Luna Park at Coney Island, as a venue for musicals and vaudeville acts.

Designed by architect George Keister, the Colonial Theater was designed in the style of a Victorian London music hall. The interior had a wide yet not very deep auditorium, which brought the balcony much closer to the stage than many other theaters and could seat nearly 1,300.

In 1912, B.F. Keith took over the Colonial Theater, altering its name to Keith’s Colonial Theater, and when E.F. Albee took over from Keith five years later, it became the New Colonial Theater.

In the early-1920’s, black-themed musical comedies came to the New Colonial Theater, with such now-racist sounding names as “Little Sambo” and “Chocolate Dandies”. It was during this time that a 1923 show, “Runnin’ Wild” introduced the dance craze called the Charleston to America from the stage or The New Colonial.

In 1932, RKO took over, and, as the RKO Colonial Theater, began showing movies. After years of second-run and double features, RKO sold the theater to NBC in early 1952.

RCA and NBC remodeled the theater, added 4 live TK40 color prototypes and a color film chain. By November of ’52, the theater was ready to go live and did so with an experimental broadcast of “Your Show Of Shows” with the color burst removed for the network audience. Color testing continued until the FCC approved the RCA Dot Sequential System and commercial colorcasts began from here.

A decade later, ABC took over, and used the Colonial Theater mainly for taping game shows until 1971. Today, it’s all gone, but not forgotten. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee




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Once, This Was The Heart Of KNBC News

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Once, This Was The Heart Of KNBC News

Thanks to Chuck Snitchler, here is a shot of the KNBC news room at the old Burbank location as it appears today. This is where the reporters, editors and producers desks were. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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By Request…Historic Kinescope Footage & The Machine Itself

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By Request…Historic Kinescope Footage & The Machine Itself

Several people asked to see more on the kinescope process, so here from NBC’s KNBH in Hollywood, is a look at some early kine images starting with some of the first Iconoscope images from 1938. I think this report was probably done in early 1949.

Also seen here, the kine recordings of the first broadcast using the RCA TK30 Image Orthicon cameras in June of 1946 at the Joe Lewis – Billy Conn rematch at Yankee Stadium. Near the end, we’ll get a look at RCA’s latest Kine in action. Videotape couldn’t come soon enough. Enjoy and share! – Bobby Ellerbee

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=0HbODxTSDmM


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TeleTales 26…The Gray Research Sound Effects Console

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TeleTales 26…The Gray Research Sound Effects Console

This is kind of a followup to posts earlier in the week that showed portable turntables from the 1930s, This was the big boy unit and CBS had a lot of these in their radio studios across the country. RCA had a similar model.

These were originally used for sound effects playbacks, but some of the first disc jockey shows were done on these machines as well. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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TeleTales 25…My How Thing$ Have Changed

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TeleTales 25…My How Thing$ Have Changed

As you look at these numbers, consider this. What cost $100,000 in 1975 dollars now costs $440,030. If you remember from a few days back, “Miami Vice” cost almost $1.3 million per episode when it debuted in 1984. Anyone have a chart like this for today’s shows? Enjoy and share. -Bobby Ellerbee


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TeleTales 24…Just For Fun!

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TeleTales 24…Just For Fun!

Here’s great shot of Mitch Miller dropping his pants as part of a practical joke during rehearsal at NBC Brooklyn Studio 2. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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January 23, 1975…”Barney Miller” Debuts On ABC

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January 23, 1975…”Barney Miller” Debuts On ABC

The series was born out of an unsold television pilot, “The Life and Times of Captain Barney Miller”, that aired on August 22, 1974 as part of an ABC summer anthology series, “Just for Laughs”.

Linden and Vigoda were cast in their series roles; no other eventual cast members were present. The pilot was shot on film at CBS Studio Center, where the sets of the 12th Precinct and the Miller apartment were originally built.

When the regular series went into production in late 1974, the series went to being recorded on videotape, and the sets were moved to the ABC Television Center in Hollywood, where they remained until production ended on the series in 1982.

Below is a the earliest clip I can find…this is Season 1, Episode 3. The series ran till May 20, 1982 and was created by Danny Arnold and Theodore J. Flicker. Noam Pitlik directed the majority of the episodes. Enjoy and share. -Bobby Ellerbee

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLRxknGukm0

Snow Job for more episodes go to my fan site http://barneymiller.webs.com/
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January 22, 1947…KTLA Becomes 1st Commercial TV In The West

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January 22, 1947…KTLA Becomes The 1st Commercial Station In The West

THIS IS A MUST SEE HISTORY OF EARLY LOS ANGELES TELEVISION!
I’ve put up only two stories today so you can have the time to see them. This amazing video is packed with ultra rare historical footage of not only KTLA, but from the early days of all the Los Angeles television stations!

You’ll hear from Bob Hope, Betty White, Steve Allen, Dinah Shore, Dick Enberg and MANY more! This 40th Anniversary broadcast posting even has a very good timeline of what comes where on the video, but if you can, make the time to see it ALL! It is one of the very best historical presentations you will ever see! ENJOY AND SHARE! -Bobby Ellerbee

http://mediaburn.org/video/ktla-anniversary-show/

[KTLA anniversary show] — Media Burn Archive

Anniversary show for the station with clips from classic programs.
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The Adelphi Theater History

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The Adelphi Theater…By Request, A Replay Of The Famous Theater’s History





Adelphi Theater Stage Is Now…New York Hilton’s Grand Ballroom

If you ever want to conjure up the ghosts of ‘The Honeymooners’, make your way to the Grand Ballroom of the New York Hilton as that is where the stage of the Adelphi Theater was located.

After I posted the rare new photo from Peter Katz yesterday of the ‘Honeymooners’, our friend Howie Zeidman from ABC called me with this interesting information. In the color photo, you see on the left what I think is the Hilton’s ballroom entrance which is directly across from the (new) Ziegfeld Theater at 144 W. 54 Street. The Adelphi was at 152 W. 54.

In the second photo, we see a long shot up 54th from 6th Ave. By the time this photo was taken, Dumont had moved out (1957) and the theater was renamed The 54th Street Theater. It was torn down in 1970 to make way for the Hilton.

Speaking of The Ziegfeld Theater, the one shown here is not the original theater where NBC did ‘The Perry Como Show’, but it is very close. That theater was on the corner of 6th Avenue and 54th street and this new Ziegfeld movie theater was built right behind where the original was.

By the way, CBS Studio 50 (Ed Sullivan Theater) is only a couple of blocks from here. Gleason started there with CBS in 1952 and had offices in the Park Sheraton Hotel which was only a block from Studio 50. When he decided to do the half hour ‘Honeymooners’ on film, he wanted something close and choose Dumont’s Adelphi which Dumont had just equipped with their new Electronicams. Enjoy and share!
-Bobby Ellerbee
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TeleTales #23…WHAT? And Give Up Show Business?

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TeleTales #23…WHAT? And Give Up Show Business?

Just like the guy in the circus parade following the elephants, westerns for television and the movies had to have someone with a shovel following the horses too. I’m pretty sure this is one of the only pictures that shows the process of collecting “road apples” on the set. Feel free to share this rarity. -Bobby Ellerbee


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TeleTales #22…A True Classic Here’s Jackie Gleason at CBS Studio 50

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TeleTales #22…A True Classic

Here’s Jackie Gleason at CBS Studio 50. Behind him is legendary cameraman Pat McBride. Enjoy and share. -Bobby Ellerbee


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TeleTales #20…A True Rarity. Television’s Only Six Shooter

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TeleTales #20…A True Rarity. Television’s Only Six Shooter

This is the six lens EMI Emitron camera from 1951. That I know of, no other camera had a six lens turret. There were a couple of five lens turrets over the years, but I think this is the only six shooter. This is a monochrome studio camera used by the BBC. Enjoy and share. -Bobby Ellerbee


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Otis Redding’s Final Appearance…The Day Before The Plane Crash

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Otis Redding’s Final Appearance…The Day Before The Plane Crash

While searching for something else, I found this and thought you may enjoy seeing it. This video is from the syndicated music show “Upbeat” that was done at WEWS in Cleveland on December 9, 1967.

Redding’s next stop was Madison, Wisconsin; the next day they were to play at The Factory nightclub near the University of Wisconsin.

Although the weather was poor, with heavy rain and fog and despite warnings, the plane took off. Four miles from their destination at Truax Field in Madison, the pilot radioed for permission to land. Shortly thereafter, the plane crashed into Lake Monona. Bar-Kays member Ben Cauley, the accident’s sole survivor.

I never met Otis, but I knew his brother Rogers and his wife Zelma. One day in 1973, they were both in my car in Macon, Georgia when a brand new song came on the radio and we were all electrified. None of us had ever heard it before, but they both said, “That’s going to be a huge record”, and it was…the song was “Let’s Get It On” from Marvin Gaye. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P29E7YYMD7o


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January 21, 1970…”The Johnny Cash Show” Debuts On ABC

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January 21, 1970…”The Johnny Cash Show” Debuts On ABC

How’s this for a guest list…Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Fanny Flag and Doug Kesrhaw. At the link is the entire first show and if you skip around some, you’ll see Johnny do some interesting things with his guests.

The date of this episode is June 7, 1969 and the show was then only a fifteen episode summer replacement for “The Hollywood Palace”, which explains the breadth of the guests on a country music show from Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium.

The ratings were good and ABC put the show on for a whole season starting January 21, 1970. The show was canceled in 1971 as part of ABC’s involvement in the so-called “rural purge” in which all three major broadcast networks eliminated rural and older skewing programs. The purge also affected ABC’s The Lawrence Welk Show.

Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z_WsvGlQrt8

6/7/69
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TeleTales #19…”Captain Kangaroo” Debuts On CBS

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TeleTales #19…”Captain Kangaroo” Debuts On CBS From Dumont

When the show debuted on October 3, 1955, CBS was in a crunch for studio space and for several years rented studio space at The Dumont Telecenter at 205 East 67th Street. Notice the Dumont cameras in this photo from the first month of the show.

As mentioned here recently, other CBS shows that were done there include “Love Of Life”, ‘The Verdict Is Yours”, “The Edge Of Night” and “As The World Turns”, which all eventually moved to Leiderkrantz Hall. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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