Monday, February 16, 2009

The Crosby-Clooney Show, Pt. 4

Reprinted in the January, 2009, Old Radio Times.

The Crosby-Clooney Show
Excerpts from Bing Crosby –– The Radio Directories (out of print)
compiled by Lionel Pairpoint
reprinted by permission

The following LPs and CDs contain material used in these shows:Blue and Gold No.1 - “Bing Crosby - All The Way” Broadway Intermission BR -135 - “Crosbyana - Volume 5” Magic AWE 7 –– “Dark Moon” Jasmine JASCD318- “Hey Look Us Over”The Crosby –– Clooney Show –– Bing’s most prolific network radio programBy Russ Rullman (as printed in BINGANG, August 1987)

It was 11:40 A.M. on Monday February 28, 1960 - and the voice of Bing Crosby reached millions of listeners through the several hundred broadcast stations comprising the CBS Radio Network, as he introduced the first of a brand new series of music and commentary programs: The Crosby-Clooney Show. This was to be his last series on network radio. From the standpoint of numbers, it was also his most ambitious. A total of 675 Crosby-Clooney Shows were broadcast in the 135 weeks to follow!

Each program was approximately 20 minutes long, following the Garry Moore Show with Durward Kirby, and preceding the CBS Twelve O'clock News. Five shows a week, Monday through Friday, week after week without a break. And this kind of production from a star whose attendance of the Kraft shows was studded with "vacations." How was it done?

Bing's show budget - and hence his supporting cast and technical team - was minimal. He and Rosemary Clooney were co-stars; Bing was very scrupulous in dividing the singing chores exactly in two. Behind them was the group of regulars who worked with Bing for seven years following the end of the General Electric program in 1954: Buddy Cole and his combo, with Buddy Cole on the piano and electric organ, Nick Fatool on drums and a variety of other instruments/Perry Botkin [later replaced by Vince Terri] on guitar, banjo and other strings/ Don Whittaker on the bass.


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