Rock Moment: “The Mike Douglas Show”


Mike Douglas started out as big band singer before heading to the small screen in the 1950s. The Mike Douglas Show debuted in Cleveland as a local show in 1961, but by 1967 after the show moved to Philadelphia, it was in 171 markets and watched by more than six million people each afternoon.

Douglas would come out and wow the crowd at the start of each show, not with a snappy monologue of jokes, but with a popular song of the time (check out his version of “Michelle” on the John Lennon clip below). His show featured the giants of show business. Everyone from Moe Howard from the “Three Stooges” to comedian Totie Fields to KISS bassist Gene Simmons to a two year old Tiger Woods appeared on the afternoon gabfest. However, the one thing I remember most (besides the colorful set, microphones on the sides of the chairs, and Douglas’ “happening” wardrobe in the late 1970s) was the music. Everyone from Frank Zappa to the Beach Boys (singing a Charles Manson penned tune) graced the KYW studio stage. John Lennon and Yoko Ono were even guests co-hosts for a week. Go figure.

The Mike Douglas Show ran until 1982 and Douglas died in 2006. I always thought what made Douglas was cool demeanor and his ability to always make his guests the star of the show. Enjoy.

Electric Light Orchestra – “The Mike Douglas Show”

Gene Simmons interview – “The Mike Douglas Show”

Neil Diamond – “The Mike Douglas Show”

The Raspberries – “The Mike Douglas Show”

Brian Wilson interview – “The Mike Douglas Show”

Sly and the Family Stone – “The Mike Douglas Show”

KISS – “The Mike Douglas Show”

John Lennon and Yoko Ono (guest hosts) – “The Mike Douglas Show”

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