Band leader Woody Herman. Herman was the leader of numerous big bands, all variously called The Thundering Herd. His bands were noted for their dazzling improvisation combined with their incisive ensemble playing. He died in 1987. (ORIGINAL BROADCAST: May 1986 and 8/19/986)
Phil Donahue host and creator of The Phil Donahue show which originally went on the air in 1967 in Dayton, Ohio. It went into syndication in ‘69, moved to Chicago in ’74, and then to New York before going off the air. Donahue’s show gave rise to the daytime talk shows of today with audience participation and outrageous guests. (REBROADCAST FROM 11/12/85)
Dick and Tom Smothers of the comedy duo The Smothers Brothers. In 1967, their show The Smothers Brothers Comedy hour first went on the air. The show has been credited with helping pave the way for a new generation of TV comedy shows including Saturday Night Live. (REBROADCAST from a 12/31/1985 interview.)
Former late-night talk show host Dick Cavett. He got his start writing gags for Jack Parr, when Parr was the host of The Tonight Show. Cavett then went the route of the standup comic, and in 1968 landed a morning talk show gig. Eventually he hosted his own late-night talk show opposite The Tonight Show which ran on ABC until 1975. From 1977-1982 he hosted The Dick Cavett Show five times a week on PBS. (REBROADCAST from 9/24/85)
Band leader and clarinetist Artie Shaw. In the 1930s and 40s his band ranked with the Goodman, Dorsie, and Miller bands in popularity. But he rejected many of the pop tunes and stuck with music by composers like Porter, Gershwin, and Berlin. Shaw is also known for working with many fine Black musicians and singers, including Billie Holiday. Shaw is now retired from performing. He celebrated his 90th birthday last week. (Rebroadcast from a 12/241985 interview.)
This month composer and jazz musician Ornette Coleman celebrates his 70th birthday. We’ll hear from him and his son Denardo Coleman. In 1959 Coleman changed the course of jazz with the start of "free jazz" and the formation of The Ornette Coleman Quartet. We will also hear from members of Coleman’s original Quartet: bassist Charlie Haden and the late trumpeter Don Cherry. REBROADCAST from 7/11/9 (from interviews aired: 11/26/1985, 9/12/1990, and 10/24/1995)
Novelist Richard Price is the author of “Freedomland” and “Clockers” which was made into a movie. He’s also the screenwriter for the films "Sea of Love," "Ransom," and "The Color of Money." (REBROADCAST from 1986)
Cynthia Lennon was the first wife of Beatle musician John Lennon. Terry talked with Cynthia in 1985. . She wrote a book about her years with Lennon in 1978 called "A Twist of Lennon." They met in art school in 1957 and were married in 1962. During the years John toured the world, as a member of the most popular rock group in history, Cynthia was at home raising their son Julian. Cynthia and John Lennon divorced in 1968 after John fell in love with Yoko Ono. John Lennon was killed 12 years later.