Chuck Woolery

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Chuck Woolery
Chuck Woolery 2004 cropped.jpg
Woolery in 2004
Born Charles Herbert Woolery
(1941-03-16) March 16, 1941 (age 74)
Ashland, Kentucky, U.S.
Occupation Television host
Years active 1969–present
Spouse(s)
  • Margaret Hayes (m. 1961–71)
  • Jo Ann Pflug (m. 1972–80)
  • Teri Nelson (m. 1985–2004)
  • Kim Barnes (m. 2006)
Children 6
Website www.chuckwoolery.com

Charles Herbert "Chuck" Woolery (born March 16, 1941) is an American game show host, occasional actor and talk show host, and former musician. He has had long-running tenures hosting several different game shows. He was the original host of Wheel of Fortune (1975–81), the original incarnation of Love Connection (1983–94), Scrabble (1984–90, and during a brief revival in 1993), and Lingo on GSN from 2002 to 2007.

Career[edit]

Woolery served two years in the U.S. Navy[1] after graduating from high school. In 1963, Woolery worked as a wine consultant for Wasserstrom Wine & Import Company in Columbus, Ohio. He was also a sales representative for Pillsbury. In the 1960s, Woolery and Elkin "Bubba" Fowler recorded as the musical duo The Avant-Garde which had one-hit wonder success in 1968 with the top 40 pop hit "Naturally Stoned".[2] Also during this time, he worked as a truck driver to supplement his income. Between 1977 and 1980, Woolery recorded for Warner Bros. Records and Epic Records as a solo artist, with two low-charting singles on Hot Country Songs.[3]

While co-starring as Mr. Dingle on New Zoo Revue, Woolery's first game show appearance was on an episode of Tattletales, alongside then-wife Jo Ann Pflug. Starting as a singer, Woolery appeared on an episode of Your Hit Parade. On January 6, 1975, he began hosting Wheel of Fortune at the suggestion of creator Merv Griffin, who had seen Woolery sing on The Tonight Show, and Woolery hosted for six years. In 1981, Woolery was involved in a salary dispute with the program's producers. Woolery stated in a 2007 interview that he demanded a raise from $65,000 a year to about $500,000 a year because the program was drawing a 44 share at the time, and other hosts were making that much. Griffin offered Woolery $400,000 a year, and NBC offered to pay the additional $100,000, but after Griffin threatened to move the program to CBS, NBC withdrew the offer. Griffin dismissed Woolery, whose final episode aired on December 25, 1981. New host Pat Sajak replaced him.[4]

Woolery hosted Love Connection (1983–94), The Big Spin (1985), Scrabble (1984–90, 1993), The Home and Family Show (1996–98, co-host), The Dating Game (1997–99), Greed (1999–2000), and Lingo (2002–07). In addition, he was the subject of a short-lived reality show, Chuck Woolery: Naturally Stoned in 2003,.[5] He also hosted his own talk show, The Chuck Woolery Show, which lasted for only a few months in 1991. He has also hosted The Price Is Right Live! at Harrah's casinos, and appeared in the live stage show "$250,000 Game Show Spectacular" at the Las Vegas Hilton until the show ended in April 2008.[6] While hosting "Love Connection" Woolery began his trademark phrase "We'll be back in two and two," before pitching to a commercial break. Two minutes and two seconds was the standard length of a commercial break.

Woolery has been seen on television infomercials as a national spokesman for National Recreational Properties, promoting developing real-estate such as Holiday Island in Arkansas. He appeared in infomercials for the company in 2006 selling properties in Horseshoe Bay, Texas and Angel Fire, New Mexico.[citation needed] He has acted as spokesperson in commercials for a number of products in recent years, many of which cater to the senior community. This includes the Willow Curve,[7] a portable low level laser therapy device purported to be able to relieve joint pain. He has also appeared in TV and radio commercials for Australian Dream,[8] an arthritis pain relief cream with histamine dihydrochloride and TriCalm,[9] a topical anti-itch product.

In 1983, Woolery hosted and provided play-by-play commentary the first annual Playmate Playoffs at Playboy Mansion West – an event involving Playmates of the Month – which was featured in the March 1983 issue of Playboy and filmed for broadcast on the Playboy Channel that year in three separate episodes.[10] Woolery was also the co-host, along with Cristina Ferrare, of the unique talk and information show The Home and Family Show, that aired on The Family Channel in the late 1990s. Michael Burger replaced Woolery in the final year of the show.

Woolery, who has often spoken enthusiastically about bass fishing, sells his own line of fishing products, including the "MotoLure," a motorized lure that simulates the motions of a small fish. Woolery's passion for the outdoors has also enabled him to become the official outdoor spokesman on QVC, where he promotes many other signature products. Woolery has also played on the World Poker Tour Hollywood Home Game for the charity Safe Passage.

Currently Woolery is the host of a nationally syndicated radio commentary show, Save Us Chuck Woolery, which began in 2012, grown out of his YouTube videos that combine his conservative political views with his humorous, everyman delivery. After two years as host, Woolery began a longer format podcast, Blunt Force Truth. With co-host Mark Young, Woolery expands on his political ideals and current events, often inviting guest experts to join the conversation.

Music[edit]

In the early 1960s he was part of a duo called The Avant-Garde who were in the psychedelic pop genre. The other half of the duo was Elkin "Bubba" Fowler. They signed to Columbia Records and had a top 40 hit with "Naturally Stoned" in 1968. They released three singles. As a solo artist he released five records with Columbia. After 1970 he signed with RCA and released "Forgive My Heart." In 1971, another single "Love Me, Love Me" failed to make any impact. He then turned to acting. In the late 1970s, he returned to his singing career. Woolery charted on Hot Country Songs with "Painted Lady" and "The Greatest Love Affair".[11]

Acting[edit]

As an actor he has appeared with Stephen Boyd, Rosey Grier and Cheryl Ladd in the mid-70's film Evil in the Deep.[12] He appeared as himself in the 1989 film Cold Feet that starred Keith Carradine and Rip Torn.[13]

Other endeavors[edit]

Woolery is politically libertarian conservative, and has spoken publicly in favor of conservative political positions. He is an active supporter of the Republican Party, and has mainly donated to Republican and conservative causes.[14][15] He occasionally writes political editorials, which are syndicated and appear in such publications as The Washington Times[16] and Newsmax.[17]

Personal life[edit]

Born in Ashland, Kentucky, Woolery is a born again Christian and volunteers in ministry.[18] He is a political conservative[19] and gun rights activist.[20][21]

Woolery and his first wife, Margaret Hayes have three children: Cary; Katherine; and Chad.[22] With second wife Jo Ann Pflug he has a daughter, Melissa. With Teri Nelson, the daughter of actor David Nelson, he has two sons, Michael and Sean.[23] Woolery married Kim Barnes in 2006.[24][25]

Filmography[edit]

Acting[edit]

Year Title Role[26] Notes
1972 New Zoo Revue Mr. Dingle
1973 Love, American Style Mr. Thompson Segment: "Love and the Cozy Comrades"
1974 Sonic Boom Pilot Rogers Short film
1975 The Treasure of Jamaica Reef Detective Also known as Evil in the Deep
1978 A Guide for the Married Woman Tennis Pro Made for television
1979 $weepstake$ Tyler Episode 4
1982 Romance Theatre "Marisol" Parts 1–5
1982 Six Pack TV Commentator #2
1989 227 As Himself Episode: "A Date to Remember"
1989 Cold Feet Himself

Hosting[edit]

Year Title Notes
1975–81 Wheel of Fortune
1983–94 Love Connection
1984–90, 1993 Scrabble
1991 The Chuck Woolery Show 11 episodes
1996–98 The Home and Family Show Co-host with Cristina Ferrare
1997–99 The Dating Game
1999–2000 Greed
2002–07 Lingo
2012-present Save Us Chuck Woolery (radio show)
2014-present Blunt Force Truth (podcast) Co-host with Mark Young

Discography[edit]

Singles[edit]

Year Single Peak positions
US Country
[3]
1977 "Painted Lady" 78
"Take 'Er Down, Boys"
1980 "The Greatest Love Affair" 94
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "Lingo | GSNTV.COM". Tv.gsn.com. 2013-02-05. Retrieved 2013-05-16. 
  2. ^ Ankeny, Jason. "The Avant-Garde biography". Allmusic. Retrieved 2009-08-01. 
  3. ^ a b Whitburn, Joel (2008). Hot Country Songs 1944 to 2008. Record Research, Inc. p. 474. ISBN 0-89820-177-2. 
  4. ^ "Woolery Reveals 25-Year Rift With Merv Griffin on "The Strip"". eMediaWire. 2007-11-25. Retrieved 2007-11-28. 
  5. ^ Petrozzello, Donna (June 9, 2003). Woolery chucked into the reality mix at the Wayback Machine (archived February 9, 2006), Daily News (New York)
  6. ^ "R.I.P. $250,000 Game Show Spectacular". Retrieved 2009-01-01. 
  7. ^ Willow Curve commercial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7d6uhIP-DaI
  8. ^ Australian Dream commercial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pB6mJjb3bco
  9. ^ TriCalm Winter Skin commercial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1rinIqQ5eY
  10. ^ http://img31.imagevenue.com/img.php?image=46502_firstpmplayoffs198303_035_123_1193lo.jpg
  11. ^ "Chuck Woolery Artist Biography by Jason Ankeny". Retrieved 2014-10-04. 
  12. ^ "Evil in the Deep Alternate title: Treasure of Jamaica Reef(1974)". Retrieved 2014-10-04. 
  13. ^ "Cold Feet (1989)". Retrieved 2014-10-04. 
  14. ^ Chuck Woolery on Occupy Wall Street, youtube.com (Chuck Woolery statement against Occupy Wall Street); retrieved February 13, 2012
  15. ^ Christopher, Tommy (February 9, 2012). Mediaite Interviews The Great Chuck Woolery At CPAC, He Is No Fan Of President Obama, Mediaite
  16. ^ O'Connor, Larry. "Washington Times Hires Chuck Woolery". Breitbart.com. Retrieved December 5, 2013. 
  17. ^ Woolery, Chuck. "Chuck Woolery - Conservative Hollywood". Newsmax. Retrieved December 5, 2013. 
  18. ^ "Chuck Woolery ... still making love connections". AskMen.com. Retrieved 2007-10-20. 
  19. ^ Seidl, Jonathan (November 4, 2011). "Chuck Woolery Sits Down With Beck and Explains 'Coming Out' as a Conservative". The Blaze; retrieved November 4, 2011.
  20. ^ Woolery, Chuck. "Lessons for Shove Guv Andrew Cuomo". SaveUsChuckWoolery. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  21. ^ "Chuck Woolery on Saving The Second Amendment". 
  22. ^ Castro, Peter. The Mourning After. March 31, 1997. Vol. 47 No. 12.
  23. ^ (June 15, 2003). "Marriage Woes for Woolery", Fox News; accessed January 9, 2014.
  24. ^ (July 20, 2006). A Love Connection for Chuck Woolery, People (magazine)
  25. ^ Corcoran, Michael (September 25, 2010). Fishing brings game show host Chuck Woolery to Texas, Austin American-Statesman; accessed January 9, 2014.
  26. ^ "Cold Feet (1989) - Cast, Credits & Awards". The New York Times. Retrieved 2015-02-02. 

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
Edd Byrnes (1974 pilot)
Host of Wheel of Fortune (daytime)
January 6, 1975 – December 25, 1981
Succeeded by
Pat Sajak
Preceded by
none
Host of Love Connection
September 19, 1983 – June 30, 1995
Succeeded by
Pat Bullard
Preceded by
Ralph Andrews
Host of Lingo
August 5, 2002 – June 6, 2007
Succeeded by
Bill Engvall
Preceded by
none
Host of The Big Spin
October 28, 1985 – November 18, 1985
Succeeded by
Geoff Edwards