Mitchell Hadley has a gold mine in his weekly blog of TV memories, more notably his look back through the TV GUIDES in his collection for some of that week’s stories(including Sullivan V. The Palace) and the crown jewel, listings of a certain date, station-by-station. I don’t have a TV GUIDE collection, just a computer with thousands of daily newspapers via the Google archive and a BETA collection of daily Chicago Tribunes dating back to the 1800’s. TV WEEK was the name of the Trib’s weekly listing section and from time-to-time I will glance through some of those 20-some pages of listings and articles, starting with the edition of 6/21/1958.
ON THE COVER-Celebrating his 10th anniversary that week was one funny-talking NYC newspaper columnist by the name of Ed Sullivan. His really big “shew” this week was a highlight fest made up of kinescopes and film and live appearances from those guests. On that 1st show was an appearance by a couple of young comics named Martin and Lewis, who were paid $200 for their trouble. Another legendary pair made that first show too, but didn’t have to pay a fee, as they were replacing a fellow songwriter who cancelled out: Rogers and Hammerstein. The one who cancelled out: Irving Berlin.
THE SIX WHO REPLACED DINAH(MWAH!)-Dinah Shore parked her Chevy for the summer, which meant that 6 stars would be filling in for Dinah while she was practicing her kissing techniques. Those lucky 6 were Met Opera star Dorothy Kirsten, Broadway singing star John(father of Bonnie) Raitt, actress Janet Blair, comedienne-singer and wife of Ernie Kovacs, Edie Adams and a young comedy team who went from $70 a week writers to a $5000 per show attraction and who would later be known for an irreverent weekly hour of blackout comedy: Rowan and Martin.
HAIR TODAY, BUT BARELY-Finally, radio personality Jack Eigen chimed in on a on-camera trend, the star with fake hair. He singled out Bing Crosby as a toupee-wearer and pointed out that one of his sons(Dennis) was sporting a hairpiece at the age of 23. Name That Tune host George DeWitt and young comic Mike Nichols wore toupees too, though Eigen said you could barely see Nichols’s blond one. And Eigen put to rest that Jack Benny and Bob Hope ever had hairpieces, though he added that if Hope ever needed a toupee, he could always go to his “father,” Bing Crosby.
For that particular issue, go here: archives.chicagotribune.com/1958/06/21/