Sunday, July 27, 2008

Tribute to the Big Bands

This week, Lawrence Welk and his Champagne Music Makers go black & white and pay salute to the big names of the Big Band era. Originally aired back on October 8, 1960....this episode is a great way to introduce the youngsters to those big band sounds!

First, here's Larry Hooper as Kay Kyser giving his musical lesson of the day to Ish Kabibble (actually it's Rocky Rockwell).

Next up is Jack Imel, as Ted Lewis, singing "When My Baby Smiles At Me".

Here's Buddy Hayes doing his impression of Cab Calloway as he sings Cab's famous hit "Minnie The Moocher".

And here's the boys in the band playing "The Woodchoppers Ball" to wrap up the show this week!

Other fine numbers include Peggy Lennon with "Oh Johnny", Larry Dean with "Got A Date With An Angel", and many more salute to big band giants such as Paul Whiteman, Spike Jones, Glen Miller, Tommy Dorsey and Freddie Martin as well.

This was a great show, makes you feel like dancing!

Also, Rocky Rockwell was interviewed by Mary Lou this week, he talked about his first trumpet and playing in his first band, how he joined the Welk orchestra and a few great stories while on the road with the Music Makers.

See you all next week....and keep a song in your heart!



Ted Hering said...

Sorry I missed this show. (Was this last Saturday on PBS?)

I've seen the Spike Jones band play tributes (good natured spoofs) to Lawrence Welk on his 1957 series, but didn't know Lawrence returned the favor.

Another Welk connection: Jo Ann Castle performed on two shows in Spike's 1957 series.

And for a non-satirical salute from Jones to Welk, see if you can locate a copy of the Verve LP, "Polka Party" by "Ole Svenson and the Polka Dots" - actually Spike and the boys. One of the tracks is the accordian-led "Lawrence Welk Polka."

jon5689 said...

[sorry if this posts twice...]

Who played string bass on Buddy Hayes' song? Looked like one of the trombone players (missing from his chair that number). He also did a solo later, but the Maestro was hard to make out with his name on the backsell of the number. Paul or Jack Westphal or some such? Did a great job on both the Bass and his own number.

One of the best shows I have seen; abd that's been a few...

jbfunky said...

That was Pete Lofthouse playing bass in Buddy's number, and yes he was one of the Maestro's trombone players.

Chus said...

This is what I think: The Lawrence Welk Show