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Calling all Tonight Show Fans: Doc Severinsen documentary

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by townsend, Apr 2, 2021.

  1. townsend

    townsend Senior Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Ridgway, CO
    Wow. I just finished watching the above documentary, part of the American Masters series on PBS: American Masters | Never Too Late: The Doc Severinsen Story | Season 35

    It really fleshes out the leader in front of the band, and behind the trumpet. Just a terrific trip back through time, especially for those of us who grew up watching Johnny Carson on the Tonight Show.

    He was 92 years old when this series was put together, and still going strong -- touring the country, performing with bands, and teaching others musicians (e.g., University of North Texas).

    When he tells the story of when he learned of Johnny's death, the depth of his loss is palpable.

    Doc is so much more than an entertainer.

    He was and is an incredible man. In Doc, Johnny had a very, very special friend.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2021
  2. tonyballz

    tonyballz Roogalator

    Location:
    arizona
    An extraordinary guy. Doc provided Johnny with a bottomless well of jokes about the band being stoned out of their heads. Carson showed him a lot of respect though. After all, Johnny and Ed basically lucked their way into their roles as talk show clowns, but Doc was a MUSICIAN who worked his butt off to get where he was. Doc had class. And oh, those suits!

    When I was in high school, I got to play in a jazz combo with longtime Tonight Show drummer Ed Shaughnessy. Nice man, great experience.
     
  3. maclen

    maclen Forum Resident

    That does look good, Going to find some time this weekend and watch it.
     
    MikaelaArsenault and townsend like this.
  4. maclen

    maclen Forum Resident

    It was a really good documentary. Fascinating to see how his horn is above everything else in his life. His work out routine was impressive. I love to see him teaching younger musicians.
     
  5. Il Zio

    Il Zio Forum Resident

    Location:
    Marco Island, FL
    Not a family man, I guess.
     
  6. MikaelaArsenault

    MikaelaArsenault Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Hampshire
    My dad and I were going to watch this last week, but it wasn’t on at a more reasonable time.
     
  7. The Panda

    The Panda Forum Mutant

    Location:
    Marple, PA, USA
    Really good show. What a musician. Dedicated to nothing but his horn, and while it cost him 2 marriages (his first wife was just a drunk), he is true to his calling and he is one talented guy. Nice that his kids and 1 ex wife still speak about him without bitterness. He chokes up when they review Johnny's death
    It subtly makes the argument that there's more to jazz trumpeters than Miles, Chet, et al. It's just that he's a big band guy and a lot of people just don't flock to that formatr any more, I guess. I'd go hear him anyday.

    But I digress--watch this if you can!
     
  8. townsend

    townsend Senior Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Ridgway, CO
    I think that after the initial broadcast, it can be watched at a time of your choosing: American Masters | Never Too Late: The Doc Severinsen Story | Season 35

    The reason I say "I think," is because PBS's programming depends on regional affiliates (an episode might be available to TX viewers but not Colorado viewers, etc.). The other factor is that though the viewing is initially free, it then is moved behind a paywall. I think there are some in government who want to destroy everything public, and that includes PBS and NPR.

    It's probably obvious from my posting habits: I am a big PBS fan. I like NOVA, Nature, American Masters, Independent Lens, Frontline (of course, not every single episode in these series is interests me, both many do). I actually find many of the shows educational, which can't be said for major networks nor most independent channels.
     
  9. townsend

    townsend Senior Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Ridgway, CO
    I think this is what, in general, distinguished musicians of old: an obsessive devotion to mastery of their instrument. Even today, there are extraordinary musicians, but I would think it hard to be obsessively devoted to an instrument, with all the modern distractions competing for one's time and attention.
     
  10. Gregory Earl

    Gregory Earl Senior Member

    Location:
    Kantucki
    I'll be dialing this up on my tv this weekend if I can find it. Thank you townsend.
     
    MikaelaArsenault and townsend like this.
  11. Playloud

    Playloud Sentimental

    Location:
    Oregon
    I’ve only seen Doc live once. The man is a force of nature and they don’t make like that anymore. I’ve been a Doc fan since I was very young. The Tonight Show albums have some killer playing on them. I’m not sure a lot of people knew that they would do the Tonight Show gig then fly to Las Vegas and play another gig. I had heard this regularly, but it was nice to hear it brought up. This went on for quite awhile. What a work horse! I love the good aggressive bands and players from the 70’s era! Buddy Rich, Woody Herman, Ferguson, etc. All these guys brought attitude to the horn! The way it should be!

    “Double forte and tighter than a bull’s ass in fly season.” I love it!
     
    16hz lover likes this.
  12. jimac51

    jimac51 A mythical beast.

    Location:
    Allentown,pa.
    Currently available 24/7 via pbs.org/show/american-masters/
    One great feature about pbs online is that their product is expertly captioned and usually printed onscreen in a timely fashion.
     
    MikaelaArsenault likes this.
  13. MikaelaArsenault

    MikaelaArsenault Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Hampshire
    Thank you.
     
  14. jimac51

    jimac51 A mythical beast.

    Location:
    Allentown,pa.
    Rich,Herman & Ferguson all had a resurgence in the mid-60s. Talk shows back then had great bands-Merv Griffin,Dick Cavett,David Frost(a personal favorite led by Dr. Billy Taylor). The introduction of electric instruments, Top 40 hit material, rock tempos-all helped bring in a younger audience. The masses got to hear the next generation of big bands coming out of Armed Forces & college bands.
     
    Playloud likes this.
  15. The Panda

    The Panda Forum Mutant

    Location:
    Marple, PA, USA
    Growing up in Reading PA in the late 60's/early 70's made the big bands always close. We had a guy who bought a huge restaurant that had a monstrous banquet hall.........he had connections and all the still living big band leaders came regularly. Kenton, Maynard, Woody, the Tex-led Miller band, Benny, you name 'em. Then Kenton had his stroke after playing here and was found wandering a parking lot half dressed. Everyone got superstitious and no one came anymore. The place went downhill and he sold out at rock bottom price.
     
  16. 16hz lover

    16hz lover Forum Resident

    Location:
    Cornelius, NC
    He's always been my favorite trumpet player.
     
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  17. Larry Geller

    Larry Geller Surround sound lunatic

    Location:
    Bayside, NY
    I'm waiting for the Tommy Newsom doc.
     
    MRamble likes this.
  18. jimac51

    jimac51 A mythical beast.

    Location:
    Allentown,pa.
    That was Stokesay Castle,right? Long,winding road to get there. I saw Maynard pre-Rocky there,possibly M.F.3. Overpriced sub-par food. Why do I think some of the food places Maynard played at were mobbed up?
    The ex's sister was employed by the hospital where Kenton was admitted and had no idea of the importance of the guy.
    Never set a foot in Reading till 1971,yes,necking at the Pagoda. Both of my wives grew up there. I kidded the ex's mom had the first Boscov's charge card. My now ever-lovin' had scuffed Mary Janes at Al Sr.s first store and she is pretty sure Al Jr. waited on the family. Did you Boscov today? The annual event ends next week.
     
  19. The Panda

    The Panda Forum Mutant

    Location:
    Marple, PA, USA
    e
    yep. Stokesay. I went to 2 wedding receptions there. Saw Maynard once. Guy across the table just vibrated in his seat, bouncing around like he was full of ants.
     
  20. jimac51

    jimac51 A mythical beast.

    Location:
    Allentown,pa.
    Sorry if that was me. I did that for years till I heard Dave Frishberg & Bob Dorough's I'm Hip:"When it was hip to be hep,I was hep".
     
  21. kouzie

    kouzie Forum Resident

    Location:
    Batavia, IL
    What a really great show. Doc seems like he's just a good person and I wish I could follow his 90-year-old workout routine.
     
  22. DigMyGroove

    DigMyGroove Forum Resident

    This was a terrific documentary. I'm so glad I got to learn Doc Severinsen's story all these years later, what an amazing guy!. Like so many I grew up watching the Tonight Show, and loved it. I was fortunate enough to see a show in person near the end, though the particular one I attended was a dud (March 29, 1992: Guests Richard Benjamin and James Taylor).
     
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