It’s hard to fathom a world where any imaginable sight, sound, or moving image of your fave rave pop star isn’t a mere mouse of a click away. But back in that Gold Age when the roll was still an essential part of rock, families instead gathered ’round their communal box every Sunday evening at eight to turn on and tune completely into the beauty, the splendor, the downright wonder which was The Ed Sullivan Show. And then, only if you were pubescent and/or lucky enough, at the top of any such given hour ringmaster Ed might just include in his introductory announcement, “And for all the youngsters out there…” before intoning – and quite often mispronouncing – none other than the name off the label of your latest, most current constantly-played 45.  

Indeed, it was in front of our family’s 23-inch Admiral that, thanks to Ed, my budding eyes both first beheld everyone from the Dave Clark Five and Gerry (RIP) and his Pacemakers to Dusty Springfield, Buck Owens, The Four Tops and Herb Alpert. And in his final years, despite daily intrusions from the likes of American Bandstand and an overwhelming slew of syndicated afternoon frug-fests, Ed still grabbed, nabbed, then broadcast the very best of musical small-screen stars; to cite but one example, the 12/28/68 Sullivan
appearance of Sly and his Family Stone was then, and remains, just about the most riotous five-minutes-some you, or I, have ever seen. Any where. At any time. 

Colonel Parker, Elvis und Ed Sullivan am 28. Oktober 1956 in New York

And while the man was often derided for his, um, stiffness shall we say, and the heppest of cats out there may still poo-pooh over his treatment of Messrs. Dylan then Morrison for example, remember that Mr. Ed, sponsors and network practices be damned, went way out on several limbs in putting onto national television acts such as Bo Diddley and (eventually) Elvis Himself, back in the days when Louis Armstrong and his handkerchief were still considered a moral outrage on many TV screens.

Not to mention, though it may have been a month or so after Jack Paar, need we never ever forget it was on Sullivan’s stage that those four “youngsters from Liverpool” first played live to the North American continent. And altered a few million destinies in the process.  

Nevertheless, Ed’s final show aired on June 6, 1971. Although nobody, including Ed, knew it at the time.

Shall we give the final words on the subject to one of the world’s greatest wordsmiths – and a frequent guest on the Really Big Shew himself? George Carlin, from FM & AM: “No-one got a chance to thank Ed. The last one that they taped, they didn’t know it was going to be the last one. What a shame. I would like to have been there, just to say… Thanks Ed.”


Gary appears here whenever he wants

gary pig gpld facong left

Gary Pig Gold may have grown up in Port Credit, run away to Hamilton to join his first rock ‘n’ roll group, hung out with Joe Strummer on his first-ever night in the UK, returned to T.O. to publish Canada’s first-ever rock ‘n’ roll (fan)zine, run away again to Surf City to (almost) tour Australia with Jan & Dean, come home again to tour O Canada with that country’s first-ever (authorized!) Beach Boys tribute band …but STILL, he had to travel all the way back to the USSR to secure his first-

One Response to “Gary Pig Gold goes FIFTY YEARS WITHOUT ED”

  1. […] 9, 1964, when those “youngsters from Liverpool” landed as if from nowhere onto the stage of The Ed Sullivan Show, think of […]

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