The Dick Clark Show

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The Dick Clark Show
Also known as Dick Clark's Saturday Night Beechnut Show
Genre Musical variety
Presented by Dick Clark
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 3
No. of episodes 136
Production
Executive producer(s) Louis M. Hayward
Charles Reeves
Location(s) Little Theater (Manhattan)
New York
Camera setup Multi-camera
Running time 22–24 minutes
Production company(s) Dick Clark Productions
Broadcast
Original channel ABC
Picture format Black-and-white
Audio format Monaural
Original run February 15, 1958 (1958-02-15) – September 10, 1960 (1960-09-10)

The Dick Clark Show (also known as Dick Clark's Saturday Night Beechnut Show) is an American musical variety show broadcast weekly in the United States on the ABC television network 7:30-8 PM (Eastern Time) on Saturdays from February 15, 1958 through September 10, 1960, sponsored (except for the first two shows) by Beechnut Gum.

Summary[edit]

Given that the show ran continually year-round for over two-and-a-half years, resulting in 136 episodes, there were no seasons as such — however, the "first season" of 29 shows could be said to run from the premiere through August 30, 1958, the "second season" of 53 shows, September 6, 1958 through September 5, 1959, and the "third season" of 54 shows, September 12, 1959 through September 10, 1960.

Dick Clark, hosting throughout the entire series, introduced musical guests, who sang/performed (or, more often, lip-synced) their latest popular hit. Often, after a performance (and sometimes before), Clark interviewed the musician(s). Between performances on some shows, he also interviewed non-musical celebrity guests, usually a television or movie star — Bob Hope, Johnny Carson, Tony Randall, and Chuck Connors, among others.

The show was staged live, in New York City, at Manhattan's Little Theater, 240 West 44th Street (except for one set of three shows broadcast remotely from Hollywood, California, August 22, 1959 through September 5, 1959, and another set of five shows broadcast remotely from various locations across the country, June 11, 1960 through July 9, 1960). For the Manhattan broadcasts, the audience sat in theater seats, rather than standing and dancing as in Clark's concurrent pop-music show, American Bandstand — this distinction is the best method to identify whether a video recording of an artist's performance is from this show, or from American Bandstand.

Top Ten[edit]

At the end of each show, Clark would announce the ten most popular songs from the current Top 40 in reverse order from #10 on down to #1, as the "American Bandstand Top Ten". On the first show, Clark played a brief soundclip from each top ten record as its title was announced. On each subsequent show, Clark played the soundclip only for those records which were "new" on the Top Ten that week. This ritual became so embedded in American culture that it was imitated in many different media and contexts throughout the years and in fact is satirized to this day every night by David Letterman.

First show[edit]

The first show was broadcast February 15, 1958[1] with no sponsor — Beechnut began sponsoring the show the third week.[2] Guests on the first show were:

Guests[edit]

Guests included almost every popular American singer of the 1950s. Jackie Wilson and Bobby Rydell were the most frequent guests, each appearing on fourteen different shows. Frankie Avalon and Paul Anka, each with ten appearances, were the next most frequent guests. Next was Jack Scott, on nine shows. Bobby Darin, and Dion and the Belmonts were next with eight appearances each; Johnny Maestro (both solo and as a member of The Crests), Annette Funicello, The Four Preps, Freddy Cannon, and Fabian were next at seven times each. At six times each were Neil Sedaka, Anita Bryant, Conway Twitty, Lloyd Price, Duane Eddy, and Jimmy Clanton.

Excluding the names listed above, at least seventy-five other singers and musicians appeared on two or more shows.[4] Among them, along with a sampling of the songs they sung (and when), were:

  • "A Lover's Question" on the November 15, 1958 show
  • "Since You Been Gone" on the July 4, 1959 show
  • "Tears on My Pillow" on the August 23, 1958 show
  • "So Much" on the November 29, 1958 show
  • "Shimmy, Shimmy Ko-Ko Bop" on the January 2, 1960 show
  • "Let the Little Girl Dance" on the April 23, 1960 show
  • "Pardon Me" on the August 6, 1960 show
  • "Lollipop" and "Mr. Sandman" on the February 22, 1958 show
  • "Lollipop" and "Zorro" on the April 26, 1958 show
  • "No Other Arms, No Other Lips" on the March 28, 1959 show
  • "Mama Don't Allow It" on the May 17, 1958 show
  • "Little Bitty Pretty One" on the August 13, 1960 show
  • "The Class" on the May 23, 1959 show
  • "The Twist" on the August 6, 1960 show
  • "I Cried a Tear" on the January 10, 1959 show
  • "I Waited Too Long" on the May 16, 1959 show
  • "Baby Talk" on the September 5, 1959 show
  • "White Tennis Sneakers" on the April 16, 1960 show
  • Baby Talk" and "We Go Together" on the June 25, 1960 show
  • "Pink Shoelaces" on the February 28, 1959 show
  • "Miss Lonelyhearts" on the August 22, 1959 show

Among the single-appearance guests were:

Notable episodes[5][edit]

  • February 22, 1958
Dick Clark interviewed Johnny Carson.
  • March 8, 1958
Dick Clark announced that viewers could receive in the mail an "autographed"[6] 45 RPM single of Jerry Lee Lewis's latest hit Breathless by sending in five Beechnut Gum wrappers and fifty cents for shipping and handling.[7] 48,000 requests were received.[8] Sun Records sent out the promotional records, the song moved further up the Top 40, and sales of Beechnut Gum increased — the deal made between Dick Clark and Sam Phillips of Sun Records for this promotion drew some criticism and accusations of payola, but resulted in no scandal and no indictments.[9]
  • May 10, 1958
Dick Clark interviewed Bob Hope — together, they lip-synced the Hope/Crosby song "Paris Holiday".
  • November 29, 1958
Because the show was being filmed the day before Dick Clark's birthday, Bobby Darin and other singers wished Dick Clark a happy birthday (but did not sing the "Happy Birthday To You" song).
  • January 3, 1959
David Seville and The Chipmunks performed "The Chipmunk Song (Christmas Don't Be Late)" — eight days after Christmas.
  • 1959 summer-series of three consecutive remote shows broadcast from Hollywood, California
  • December 31, 1959
Dick Clark hosts a special edition of the show on New Year's Eve, despite that day being on a Thursday. Because of the show's cancellation, it would not be reprised the next year. Clark would later return to ABC's New Year coverage in 1974, when he brought New Year's Rockin' Eve to the network; Clark has remained in that role ever since.
  • 1960 summer-series of five consecutive remote shows
  • June 11, 1960 (broadcast from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania)
    Bobby Darin ("Bill Bailey, Won't You Please Come Home", "I'll Be There"), The Crests ("Trouble in Paradise"), The Fendermen ("Mule Skinner Blues"), Paul Evans ("Happy-Go-Lucky Me"), and The Skyliners ("Pennies from Heaven")
  • June 18, 1960 (broadcast from Hollywood, California)
    The Safaris ("Image of a Girl"), The Hollywood Argyles ("Alley Oop"), The Crosby Brothers ("The Green Grass Grows"), and Jimmie Rodgers ("Just a Little Closer Walk With Thee")
  • June 25, 1960 (broadcast from Treasure Island Naval Base near San Francisco, California)
    The Olympics (Big Boy Pete), Jan and Dean ("Baby Talk", "We Go Together"), Dorsey Burnette ("Hey Little One"), and The Four Preps ("Got a Girl")
  • July 2, 1960 (broadcast from Chicago, Illinois)
    Brenda Lee ("I'm Sorry", "That's All You Gotta Do"), Freddy Cannon ("Jump Over"), Tommy Edwards ("I Really Don't Want to Know"), and Jack Scott ("Burning Bridges")
  • July 9, 1960 (broadcast from Hollywood, California)
    The Everly Brothers ("Cathy's Clown", "When Will I Be Loved?", "So Sad"), Jeanne Black ("He'll Have to Stay", "Lisa"), Deane Hawley ("Look for a Star"), and Larry Bright ("Mo-Jo Workout")
  • August 6, 1960
Chubby Checker introduced "The Twist" to America.

Final show[edit]

The last show was September 10, 1960.[1] Highlights of the series were shown from past shows:[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Brooks, Tim and Marsh, Earle (Edition 7 — 1997), The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows: 1946—Present, Random House Inc., page 537, ISBN 0-345-45542-8
  2. ^ a b Sam's Television Appearances/The Dick Clark Saturday Night Show on the Sam Cooke Fan Club website
  3. ^ Clip of 1958 Jerry Lee Lewis performance on YouTube website
  4. ^ Full Credits for "The Dick Clark Show" at the Internet Movie Database website
  5. ^ a b Dick Clark Saturday Night Beechnut Show entry on WWW.TV.COM website
  6. ^ "...autograph was done with a rubber stamp and green ink..." at the "Jerry Lee Lewis in the 1950s" website
  7. ^ Poore, Billy (1998) "Rockabilly: A Forty-Year Journey", Hal Leonard Publishing, page 11 ISBN 978-0-7935-9142-8
  8. ^ Bundy, June "Mail Pull Rates Clark a Topper in TV Promotions", Billboard Magazine, (November 10, 1958), page 46
  9. ^ Martin, Linda and Segrave, Terry (1993) "Anti-Rock: The Opposition to Rock 'n' Roll", Da Capo Press, p. 100, ISBN 0-306-80502-2

External links[edit]