This is the first Chapter of two weeks of shows I did back in 2007- so to everything I say, please add 6 years, lol!
It is a significant short Series to ME, because Engineer Ken Stanley and I were increasingly moving away from those Featured Artists shows, where you just bring in a couple of Greatest Hits CD's or albums (anyone can do that!), and moving to more interesting Topics and Themes.
I had previously done certain Historical Figures- for example, the Wright Brothers and playing Songs about Planes.
But Johnny Carson, while he was famous, was not really a Historic Figure- at least not yet, and maybe never.
He was an Entertainer...and he didn't even like Rock & Roll.
So the challenge was, how do you do a Rock & Roll show- even a Free-Form one, about a Talk Show Host/Comedian?
I knew if I could do this, from then on it would be Anything Goes!
Whether I was successful or not, the Anything Goes prevailed.
But you have these next four episodes to answer for yourself as to how I handled the subject of how on May 22 Johnny Carson retired from the Tonight Show after almost 30 years as the late night host.
I will start the show off predictably enough, no surprise there.
And if we are dealing with the end of Carson's successful reign, we should start at the beginning.
So we will hear the 1st words EVER spoken on the 1st night he took over, Oct. 1, 1962.
And check out that amazing guest list.
Many people have forgotten, or never knew, that the Tonight Show back then, and for Steve Allen and Jack Paar previously, was one hour and 45 minutes long.
The 11 o'clock newscasts were only 15 minutes long, and here in New York City we got to see the first, extra, opening 15 minutes before the show was picked up nationally for the next 90 minutes.
Let's get started- HEEEEEEERE'S Johnny...!
Here are the links to get a seat in the FRONT row, at Mike Pell Rockollections: