Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Crosby-Clooney Show, Pt. 7

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

Uniquely, however, there were no guests, and all of the musical numbers were Bing-Buddy-Rosie creations, with a couple of exceptions. He and Rosie plugged their 1959 album “How The West Was Won” on a few shows, and their comic single “Isle of Capri” (1958) with Billy May's Orchestra was used several times.

Truly, the whole series was a monumental undertaking, but in character with a man who could, and did, cut 8 or 10 commercial recordings in a single day.

Part Two (as printed in BINGANG, December 1987)

"Only the magic of tape made possible the Crosby-Clooney Show, which was broadcast on CBS radio five days a week, Monday through Friday, for 135 weeks straight without a break from February 28, 1960 through September 28, 1962. Bing was a pioneer of broadcast tape, and up to 1960 had amassed a huge quantity of tape recordings from various radio programs, from the Philco, Chesterfield and General Electric series, then the 15-minute evening programs logged as The Bing Crosby Show, and into a curious little five-minute program which was half-and-half: one song and one commercial, called the Ford Road Shows. These programs started on the air September 2, 1957, and circulated for a couple of years, to be followed by the final effort, the Crosby-Clooney 20-minute daytime program.

"Following the conclusion of the General Electric shows in 1954, Bing retrenched. Radio could no longer support a lavish ensemble of 22 top musicians headed by John Scott Trotter, and Bing adamantly refused to consider a TV series, which would put him back on the live-show treadmill. So, starting with his album "A Musical Autobiography" in 1954 it was Bing with Buddy Cole at the piano; Nick Fatool, percussions; Perry Botkin [later replaced by Vince Terri], strings; and Don Whittaker, bass. This combo could sound a lot bigger than it was - they even took vocal choruses when the occasion called for it, and Fatool had a collection of bells, chimes, and other effects which were worked into the arrangements."


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