In the mid ’80’s, I was a mere intern at the NBC affiliate, WLWT in Cincinnati, working with Norma Rashid and Richard Hull. Nick Clooney was the WKRC news anchor who owned the market after stealing it from Al Schottelkotte at WCPO. Every time I was sent out to cover spot news stories – shootings, stabbings, fires, car accidents – whatever – I was there for Channel 5 – Nick was there for Channel 12. Obviously he got the best interviews because everyone wanted to talk with THE Nick Clooney. I came across this WKRC promo and I can verify it’s true. Nick was all over the streets of Cincinnati, right next to little intern Ray. I love the shot where Nick is interviewing Mayor Jerry Springer – the man who will ultimately unseat him as the market’s #1 news anchor. These were great days. Continue reading IN THE NICK OF TIME
This past week, I had the privilege of being invited to the Flourishing Leadership Institute’s “LEAF” workshop. LEAF is a new approach used by change agents (coaches, speakers, trainers, facilitators, consultants, and leaders) to lead groups of all sizes to shape their future or solve specific problems better, faster and more naturally than thought possible with other methods. I was there to premiere a video I shot and edited about Jesse Harless. Jesse is using the LEAF method to help people who are recovering from addiction – and his results are getting glowing reviews. This video is the media marketing he needed to move his program to a national scale. Continue reading ADDICTION RE-LEAF
One of the best things about television in the ’70’s and ’80’s were those yearly image campaigns by each of the networks pushing their new fall lineup. ABC, CBS and NBC always seemed to be trying to out do each other every year with bigger, louder and more star-studded campaigns than the year before. Aside from the eye popping visuals, there were the catchy jingles accompanying each campaign. 1982’s winner was, hands down, ABC with it’s “Come On Along” theme. The network actually allocated a budget, hired a chopper and paid some of its talent to appear in scenes shot specifically for this campaign. Fonzi and Chachi, Mr. Roarke & Tattoo, Laverne and Shirley, Max from Hart To Hart, that Benson guy, Joanie (Erin Moran, who lived near me for many years in Los Angeles, RIP) and even Scooby Doo showed up in Manhattan to get bystanders to come on along. It’s the promotion people running amok, schlock galore, and I love every second of it: Continue reading 1982 IMAGE CAMPAIGNS
Two television treasures here from the golden age of local TV. I found these films just the other day and couldn’t wait to get them on-line for you to check out. I’ve never seen either presentation before but both films highlight independent station KTLA as a true forerunner in early television production from back in the day when owned by Paramount Studios. These are priceless portraits of local TV’s “coming of age” and the pioneers who put it all together. Continue reading A PRICELESS PORTRAIT OF TV’S PAST
When you combine two words, “popular” and luxury, you create “Populuxe”. It was a consumer culture and aesthetic in the U.S. in the 1950’s and ’60’s. The look and feel of Populuxe was one of futuristic and Space Age influence. You can identify the Populuxe movement in films, graphics, clothing designs, furniture, interior design and architecture. And nowhere is it more on display than a few of the short films I’ve collected below.
“DESIGN FOR DREAMING” (1956)
First is Design For Dreaming, a film which was shown before the feature film at movie theaters across the country. It was created to highlight the General Motors Motorama of 1956, the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York and new Frigidaire appliances. Tad Tadlock, a dancer and choreographer plays the woman caught in pink pajamas going to the Motorama. Her masked suitor is dancer and choreographer Marc Breaux. The film is an over-the-top, dream-dance piece of puffery which is why it’s so fascinating to watch. Directed by William Beaudine and produced by Victor Solow for MPO Productions, it’s once of those productions I wish I had a hand in producing. I’ve acquired a breathtaking print of the film you won’t find on YouTube. Favorite Populuxe line of dialogue: “Better get her into the kitchen, quick!” Enjoy. Continue reading OUR “POPULUXE” PAST
Here’s a great promo clip the WB did about KTLA Morning News traffic reporter Jennifer York. It’s a interstitial the network ran during its children’s programming highlighting the crazy careers some people choose. Cute little theme song. Check it out. Continue reading JENNIFER BELONGS TO THE SKY!
There’s no denying Hands Across America, the follow-up charity event to We Are The World, was a nation-wide phenomenon. Five million people turned out to hold hands from coast to coast though there were some wide gaps because of our nation’s landscape. In some cities, people were up in arms because their locale was excluded from the official event route. I could not attend the festivities, unfortunately, as I was interviewing for a job on that day. Hands Across America raised $15 million which finally ended hunger in America once and for all. OK, maybe not, but for me, the lasting legacy of the event is its theme song. Continue reading WISH I HAD A HAND IN THIS
—CODE 1000’S CAN BE CREATIVE!—
We call it a “Code 1000”. It’s a mention upper management wants you to include in your newscast. It might be a charity event the station is sponsoring that they want you to shoot and mention in a :30 voice-over at 11pm. Or maybe they want you to promote a free flu shot giveaway the station’s part of at the Walgreens down the street. Or it could be something as obvious as promoting a Cheers marathon happening this weekend now that the station has bought the syndication rights to the sitcom. Continue reading A “MUST COVER” IN YOUR NEWSCAST!
Remember when VH1 was still “the other music television”? Miss those days.
…and they were using celebrity endorsements to force cable Continue reading VH1’S UPS & DOWNS THE DIAL
Here’s an ultra rare one I came across in a box of old show reels! Back in 1986 when I was producing the 6 & 11pm newscasts at WSAZ in Charleston-Huntington, WV, Travel West Virginia had just created a tourism campaign promoting the state, which was going to be seen nationwide. Essentially, they wanted us to promote their promotion! The theme song is, “Come Home To West Virginia” and is performed by country singer Kathy Mattea. It came with a music video showing off the beauty of the state. Having lived there, I can tell you it’s a stunning area.
This video is direct from VHS and the audio is straight from a vinyl 45. I haven’t seen this anywhere on the internet, and the song is kinda rockin’ with a country sort of flavor, so let me be the first to show off the reconstructed music video: Continue reading A WEST VIRGINIA GEM
I’m totally biased for sure – having grown up in Cincinnati and having worked at WLWT – but here are four brilliant spots created for the station’s image campaign from the mid-1980’s. Every image in the spots is a true reflection of the Cincinnati lifestyle. Ted Neely, the actor who played Jesus in the original Jesus Christ Superstar film was hired to sing the “Cincinnati Style” theme. Excellent campaign! Continue reading BRILLIANT IMAGE CAMPAIGN
The mid-eighties were the best years of the three major network’s annual fall preview promotions. It was a big deal. Every summer, viewers were bombarded with up-tempo, catchy theme songs cut to fast-paced video of network stars dancing down New York streets encouraging bystanders to “Come On Along”. Just starting out in TV then at an NBC affiliate, I was bombarded with many incarnations of “Be There” promos which I’ve yet to get out of my head! But ABC, by far, had the best campaigns. I want to show you my all-time favorite promo campaign theme song – “That Special Feeling” from ABC’s 1983-1984 Fall Preview Campaign. Continue reading “THAT SPECIAL FEELING” REMEMBERED