Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The Trio for Triscuit crackers

Are you planning a Halloween party for tonight, and cannot decide on what kind of munchies to serve?

Straight from the bowels of YouTube, here's Gail, Sandi and Mary Lou doing a 1978 commercial for Triscuit!.


Dancing With The Stars recap

Is it just me, or am I the only one stunned by Sabrina of the Cheetah Girls being voted off on the results show?

That just proves that in the world of television, suprises and shockers are there at every turn, and considering she has been one of this season's contenders....getting the heave-ho surprised everyone, even the ballroom audience.

Now, it's Scary Spice looks like the favorite to win....unless the voters have their say....and most of the voters could be Osmond fans.....Marie, despite finishing next-to-last in the judges score for the safe.

The drama continues......

Monday, October 29, 2007

Salute to Halloween

This week, we got the Halloween show from 1978....the musical numbers were good but the costumes the Musical Family wore really stole the show!

Here's a look at them, starting the Aldridges and Otwells as cowpokes.....

and here's Bob Ralston as Dracula.....

It's sorcerer Ken Delo making Love Potion Number 9 with his lovely assistant Anacani....

How about a little fire scarecrow?

It's Mary Lou Metzger and Jack Imel!

Now here's Norma Zimmer and Jimmy Roberts going medieval......

And finally, three witches of Eastwick.....Gail Farrell, Sandi Griffiths and Mary Lou!

Until next week, happy trick or treating y'all!


Sunday, October 28, 2007

Laroon Holt

Today is the birthday of one of our Champagne Music Makers, trumpeter Laroon Holt.

The native of Barnes, Kansas joined the Welk Orchestra in 1973 filling the chair of the trumpet section very nicely. Prior to that, he played with the Kansas City Philharmonic Orchestra and with musical giants such as Les Brown and Nelson Riddle.

He's happily living in Pasadena, CA with his wife Claudine, continuing with his musical career and is the father of two kids, Tim and Heidi.

Happy Birthday Laroon!


Friday, October 26, 2007

It's still a dog eat dog world out there

A lot of our Music Makers are solid pet owners as well!

From the early 1970s, here's Sandi Griffiths and her husband Brent with a pair of huskies, and it's just about dinner time!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

This number is going to the dogs

From the TV treasure chest known as YouTube, here's a short clip of the Lennon Sisters from the 1950s singing, "How Much Is That Doggy In The Window?"

It's from their 1992 special, "Easy To Remember"....many thanks to Shirl for the piece.


Monday, October 22, 2007

Dancing With The Stars recap for Week Five

Anyone saw Marie Osmond faint? The competition is starting to take a toll on many of the couples.

The fifth week of competition saw Scary Spice and Sabrina of the Cheetah Girls the top two with 29 and 28, they are looking like the favorites to win the title for season five...and look for Jane Seymour as the dark horse, she's looking impressive.

Bottom two in this round are Osmond and Mark Cuban with 21 a piece, looks like one of them will not return for next week....depends on what the voters have their say.

From this point on, there is no room for error....even scores in the mid-20s wouldn't be enough, when the level of dancing is this excellent!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Hooray for Hollywood

Well, this is it.....for most markets, like mine, we finally get to see "Hooray For Hollywood" which originally aired in February 1975 and made it's initial public television debut two years ago.

And let's go to the highlights.....starting with Guy & Ralna singing "True Love"

We also have, dressed as Charlie Chaplin....Cissy & Bobby dancing to Scott Joplin's, "The Entertainer" made famous by the movie "The Sting".

How about Tanya Falan and Dick Dale "Swingin' On A Star", or would you rather be a fish or a mule?

Here's Larry Hooper and his fine ladies (Sandi, Gail and Mary Lou) with "Toot Toot Tootsie".

Other great songs include "Take Your Girlie To The Movies", "Do Not Foresake Me" and a medley of songs from "The King And I"

A very, very good show indeed....topped off with Mary Lou's interview with Gail Farrell, whom she talked about her growing up in both Salinas, CA and Durant, OK.....her being a contestant in local beauty pageants, how she got on the Welk Show and her family.

Simply, a real treat to listen to her tell a story. Until next week, take care!


Saturday, October 20, 2007

The Welk 500

Back in the spring of 1965, a television milestone was established over at ABC,

The Lawrence Welk Show aired it's 500th show that Saturday night!

Here are a few highlights from that milestone and memory,

The Maestro opens the show with his trusty accordian....

Here's the entire Lennon family together for a hootnanny!

Joe Livoti demonstrating his skills as a violin concertmaster....

And Larry Hooper swinging into high with Lawrence watching with glee.

By next season, the show would make the move to color.....and many many more milestones and memories would made!


Thursday, October 18, 2007

Ron Anderson

Today is Ron Anderson's birthday fellow Welkies...

As a member of the Music Makers for the show's last two years on first-run syndication, his contributions as part of the mixed trio of Gail, Ron and Michael are vaulable indeed.

Also as a native San Franciscan, he roots loyally for his beloved 49ers and he's also holds a black belt in karate.

Happy Birthday Ron!


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Mimi Lennon

Today is Mimi Lennon's birthday today

Here's Mimi when she was ten years old.....

And here's Mimi today, showing everyone that she sings real good!

When older sister Peggy retired from the act in 1999, she took her place during the sisters' engagement at the Welk Resort in Branson.

Today, the act is now a trio featuring her with Kathy and Janet....and still sounding wunnerful than ever.

Happy Birthday Mimi!


Monday, October 15, 2007

Ecology, The World Around Us

Since this is Blog Action Day today, here's a Lawrence Welk Show episode that is good for the enviroment....originally aired on February 2, 1973 it's the Ecology show!

And here are a few highlights, starting with Dick Dale and his friends singing "Chimney Smoke."

We also have the trombone section playing "East Of The Sun" complete with a nice solo by Barney Liddell....

Next, here is Ken Delo singing "On A Clear Day"....which is rare these days if you live in smoggy Los Angeles....

Here's the trio of Gail, Sandi and Mary Lou cleaning up after those litterbugs in the number, "Green, Green".

And here's the whole cast joining Bob Havens on trombone and Henry Cuesta on clarinet with a rousing number of "Blue Skies".

And there were plenty of other eco-friendly numbers, such as Tanya Falan's "It's A Most Unusual Day", Bobby Burgess and Jack Imel dancing to "Chem-Chem Chr-ee", Guy & Ralna singing the "Tennessee Bird Walk" plus a nice Dave Edwards saxophone solo to "Misty".

This episode not only advocates a clean planet but provides clean music too!


The Blogmeister's Monday Morning Musings

It's Monday again, and to quote the Boomtown Rats..."I Don't Like Mondays" but unlike Garfield, I don't hate them either.

Anyway, it's already off to an interesting start....I got to see Drew Carey make his hosting debut on "The Price Is Right". Granted that he has to follow a legend like Bob Barker, if he can work the bugs out....he should be fine.

Also, tonight is a new "Dancing With The Stars", let's see if that girl from the Cheetah Girls or Scary Spice can do the Viennese Waltz.

From the Welk front, learned that the next episode is "Hooray For Hollywood" with Gail Farrell's interview, techincally it is a repeat show but because of pledge breaks in the past, this is the first time it will air on my local PBS station. Thankfully, I was able to get a copy of the show and all I can tell you is that this episode is a winner!

Finally, today is Blog Action Day.....and I've done my share for the enviroment so far by recycling. I don't know why there are some people that look at this issue with hostility......why would anyone embrace being pro-pollution?

After all, this is my planet Earth too, I don't wanna breathe filthy air nor swim in toxic waters.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Fashion Hits Through The Years

This week brings us a really fun episode, "Fashion Hits Through The Years" from 1971 which included with your regular song, dance and champagne music....a sample of fashions from the 1920s to the 1970s.

It's time for the show to start! Here's the gang in their raccoon coats with "Button Up Your Overcoat".

Straight from the 1940s, the duo of Gail and Dale with "Don't Sit Under The Apple Tree" which they are dressed staright out of a scene from Ken Burns' latest documentary "The War".

Here's Mary Lou Metzger complaining to talior Charlie Parlato that "Sam, You Made The Pants Too Long" as Jack Imel and Bobby Burgess show why.

Also, Clay Hart gives us a visual reason why "Everything Is Beautiful" and it's not just the fact he sings Ray Stevens' most popular hit song so very well.

And now it's time to go down to the Cabaret with Bob Lido and his gang of Hotsy Totsy Boys!

Other fine numbers in this show include Tanya's "Hey There" along with band instrumentals of "Someone To Watch Over Me" and "Get Me To The Church On Time". Also included are "Anything Goes" by Sandi & Sally, "Puttin' On The Ritz" by Cissy and Bobby, "Shine On Your Shoes" danced by Arthur Duncan and a great polka by Myron Floren with "Hoop De Do".

A very wunnerful show indeed, and this week's interview was pleasant and fun!

Speaking of that, Mary Lou herself was interviewed....and no, she didn't interview herself (that would really make for great TV!), instead it's Bob Allen from OETA that stepped in and conducted the interview.

Until next week, may your trouble be few and may your dress shirts be anything but pink, orange or green!


Saturday, October 13, 2007

Say Cheese!

Or in the case of this "Salute to Hawaii" episode from 1968, macadamia!

Looks like Charlie Parlato found his island queen with Jo Ann Castle all from just one-paddle, two-paddle, three-paddlin' along.

Back in Toledo, we finally say aloha to's now pretty chilly.

And just think, last Sunday....I was out in shorts, how depressing.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Jack Martin

For all you old school Welk fans, remember saxophonist Jack Martin?

A mainstay of the reeds section from the black & white era, Jack was a member of the Music Makers from 1955 to 1958. The native of Nelsonville, OH attended Ohio University and played with several bands such as Meredith Wilson and Kay Kyser just to name a few. He also was known for his singing pipes and has great comedic talents....known for "stealing the show" in certain numbers.

He passed on back in 1972, but he's known as one of three Music Makers (George Thow and Kurt Dietrle) that hail from the Buckeye State, where yours truly...the blogmeister....was raised and currently lives.


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Yes I watch Dancing With The Stars.....gotta problem with that?

OK, the secret is out.....I've watched the entire season five of the popular ABC show so far.

It all started at work, at my job in AM radio....usually when I work evenings, the studio has a TV, no cable....just the terrestrial channels, I chose to watch the season's premiere three weeks back and was hooked....the star lineup is stellar especially when it includes Wayne Newton, Jane Seymour, Heilo Castroneves, Mark Cuban and Marie Osmond just to name a few.

And the quality of ballroom dancing is stellar....just like what you see every week on the Welk show.

Last Monday, while going back-and-forth between Cowboys-Bills Monday Night Football, Yankees-Indians ALDS Game Four....most of my TV time was spent on watching Jennie Garth tackle the tango and Floyd Mayweather doing the jive.

It's early in the competition, and I still have not decided on who is my favorite to's still anyone's ballgame.

One of these days, the producers gotta have Bobby Burgess, Cissy King, Arthur Duncan or any of the dancing Welk stars guest star....or perhaps have the couples dance to something more challenging.

Like the Calcutta or a rousing polka.....

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Georgy Girl

You too can be a Georgy Girl, with a little help from the Champagne Music Makers in this 1971 clip from the "Academy Awards" episode.

With apologies to the Seekers, I personally like this instrumental version better.


Sunday, October 07, 2007

Musical Masterpieces

This week, it's "Musical Masterpieces" from October of 1975 and here are a few highlights from the show!

Here's Tanya Falan and Ken Delo teaming up for "Glow Worm"

Also, here's Tom Netherton singing "Stranger In Paradise"

Always in top form, Anacani with her rendition of "Guadalajara"...

...and here's Johnny Zell with a trumpet solo of "It's All In The Game", he was also the featured interview afterwards as well.

And finally, The Trio with "Bubbles, Baungles and Beads".

Next week is back to the new stuff, "Fashion Hits Through The Years" and from what I hear.....Mary Lou Metzger will be interviewed!

And no, I don't think Mary Lou will conduct the interview this time....although it would make for very interesting television.

Until next week, keep a song in your heart and stay cool!


Paul Humphrey

Pull up the birthday truck with the cake and ice cream in it, today's is another music maker's special day!

On Sunday, it's super drummer Paul Humphrey, a member from 1976 to 1982.

And here's a fun fact: Paul actuallt topped the charts....the Billboard R&B charts in 1971 as a member of the Kool-Aid Chemists with the Top 20 hit "Kool-Aid".

He continues to be master of the sticks, and he and his wife Joan are proud parents of two kids, Pier and Humphrey.

Happy Birthday Paul!


Saturday, October 06, 2007

Gail Farrell

All you music makers out there, today is another wunnerful birthday,

October the Sixth means one thing....Gail Farrell's birthday!

A member of the musical family since 1969, Gail is known for her diverse talents as a singer, pianist and arragner

and also occasional guest panelist on Match Game (twice in 1979 and 1981).

Her first number sung on the Welk show was the popular "Downtown" made famous by Petula Clark.

Also, she has sung as a duet with Dick Dale, was one-third of both Gail, Sandi & Mary Lou (The Trio) and Gail, Ron & Michael (the Mixed Trio).

Today, she lives in Northern California's Bay Area with her husband Ron Anderson where she happily roots for the Giants and continues with her music career.

Happy Birthday Gail!


Friday, October 05, 2007

Another hairy situation

Today, it's super trumpet player Johnny Zell

First from 1969, when things were a little short......

And from 1979, going down the long and winding road.....

And that my friends is the long and short of it!

Visit Johnny's webpage for more on the art of the trumpet and concert dates


Thursday, October 04, 2007

Mahlon Clark: 1923-2007

Sad news, found out from the Los Angeles Times obituary section that clarinet player Mahlon Clark has passed away on September 20th.

While most of us remember him as a member of the Maestro's reed section, and who also married Kathy Lennon, Mahlon was known as a very talented musician who performed on many movie soundtracks for Paramount Studios and movies such as "When Harry Met Sally" and "Dick Tracy."

He also played for many artists as diverse from Frank Sinatra to Madonna.

Also, he was active with rights of his fellow musicians as a member of the Musicians Guild of America whom he served on the union's board.

Mahlon was 84 years old and living in Van Nuys, CA. He is survived by two daughters, a son and four grandchildren.


Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Family Guy goes Welk

It looks like the Lawrence Welk Show has made the big time!

The popular animated show Family Guy, which parodies some of pop culture's finest in music, television, movies and celebrity has now taken their best shot at the Champagne Music Makers. Thanks to YouTube, here's a clip....judge for yourself if it is funny or not.

A little warning....the language is a bit strong for the kids, so it's not for everyone's ears.


Goin' Bananas For Tom

Of course, it's not so hard to go bananas if you're wardrobe is yellow!

Here's baritone Tom Netherton from 1976 leading a chorus of Welk's Fine Ladies in song, and it is true....the girls do go bananas over a feller like Tom.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Skeets Herfurt

Here's saxophone player Skeets Herfurt, a member of the Welk orchestra from 1979 to 1982.

He's played with a Whos Who of musical greats such as Frank DeVol, Nelson Riddle plus Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey just to name a few. But how about this for 1939 he and his University of Denver student band were booked at the Broadmoor Country Club in Denver for an engagement when at the last minute, were replaced at the last minute by another popular band from North Dakota!

Who's that band....Lawrence Welk and his Champagne Music Makers!

Forty years later, the Maestro hires him as it's star saxophone player in the reeds section....funny how things work out.