Stories and insight in the world of showbiz and beyond.

Friday, January 13, 2006

LLOYD THAXTON MOUSE PACK

Welcome to The Lloyd Thaxton Mouse Pack.

Why Mouse Pack? Back in the 60s a famous Hollywood group of friends formed “The Rat Pack.” The star members were Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Peter Lawford, and Joey Bishop. They filled out the group with a host of their equally famous friends. When you are a celebrity, it is hard to just go out as one couple and have a good time. Too many admirers can spoil the fun. The Rat Pack consisted of a group of friends who could go out together or have social functions at each other’s homes.

It’s incredible that, after 40 years off the air, I still have fans. The emails I’ve received in the past year touched my heart because of the many wonderful and sincere comments.

During one of my more zany musings, I thought about the Hollywood Rat Pack It gave me the idea of how to put together all my long time loyal fans and hopefully make a warm group of our own. We could sit at our computers and discuss things that were relevant in the 60s and how they are affecting our lives now. We are the Baby Boomers, the most powerful group in America. It’s time we all got booming.

Obviously, I couldn’t call this the “Rat Pack.” However, sitting at my computer with hand poised lightly on my mouse, I suddenly thought, “MOUSE PACK!” After all, I have a lot of stories to tell about the guests I had on the show and celebrities I knew like Steve McQueen and Marlon Brando (already posted). And, all the other exciting things that went on behind the scene of this wonderful era called “The 60s.” I’m sure all you “Mousepacketeers” have great stories of your own to share.

How do you join the exclusive Mouse Pack? If you are reading this posting, you already completed step one. The only other thing you have to do is go to the comment section and leave a message and your email address. Just those two things and you’re in.

Tell me in the comments what you would like to talk about and keep checking back. Based on what I hear from you, there should be a lot of exciting things to come.

To make this work, I need your input.

You're going to like this.

25 Comments:

Blogger BiLL Earl said...

dear lloyd

this is a honor to be able to chat w/ you!

i watched you EVERY weekday after jr. high in 1965

i still have my official DAWK on a shelf..if you want a photo of it just let me know

QUESTION: in early 1966 they changed your format from the malt shop and teamed you up w/ a couple of younger people..

the one i'm wondering about was kind of a blond frankenstein John Tesh-looking fellow..remember him?

What was his name, and what ever became of him?

again, this is an honor to chat w/ you!

BiLL Earl :)

http://billearl.blogspot.com
EARLWMF@aol.com

4:02 PM

 
Blogger THE ROCK RELIC said...

TO: HEAD CHEESE
FROM: VICE MOUSE
SUBJECT: CATS

I have been informed that a number of cool cats should be advancing on our mousehole shortly. They may request admittance to the colony. Please advise as to disposition of this matter.
-------------------------------------
Actually, I've got a feeling that this is gonna GROW, Lloyd. Got a GREAT idea!! I've promoed it on TGIN and in the signature on my outgoing emails. Also doing some WOM on it as well.
You've been through it all, and STILL come out in one imaginative, optimistic piece!
Thus, a new nickname is born for the Head Cheese: The "No-Dent Rodent"!

Honored to be part of the team!

Chuck
(er ... WAITaminnit ... since I'm in the group, does that make ME [gulp!] "Chuck E. Cheese"? Geez ...)

11:14 PM

 
Blogger Ken Levine said...

Lloyd,

I'd love to know what a "day in the life" was like when you were doing your show. When did you arrive at the studio? Did you pick the music? Did you rehearse the songs you lip syced (or finger synced on the piano)? After the show, did you have a chance to watch it (like a coach watching game film) or when a show was over you just moved on?

I still want to dance on your show.

Ken Levine
kenlevine.blogspot.com

6:09 PM

 
Blogger Chuck said...

Hi Lloyd...All the way from Istanbul!!

As the winner of your very first ever Dance Contest (Doing the Bird-Rivingtons) on prime time in 1963, and being a regular on your show for over a year and a half...it was a pleasure to have been in contact with you again recently...I will pass this site on to others who were a part of the Venice High School crowd who were on your show weekly....YOU, your show, were some of the best memories of my High School days....I wish you the best ever in health and happiness the New Year.....Chuck Swift

2:04 PM

 
Blogger Gary said...

Welcome Mr. Thaxton and thank you for inviting me into your MOUSE PACK. This is truly and honor! I think we'll have a lot of fun here and share some great information. I've already told other friends about this....I HOPE YOU DON'T MIND!

2:41 PM

 
Blogger Gary said...

Okay, here I go.......I think you just KNEW somebody would bring this up, so I will do it first.
How many tapes or clips of the LLOYD THAXTON SHOW exist today? I know some do (I remember seeing a couple on AMC POP several years back) but I was wondering if there's enough to put out a home video of the clips that have survived? HULLABALOO and SHINDIG tapes were a success and so are the ED SULLIVAN tapes. Howzabout it, Lloyd? We would LOVE to see them again.....even if the acts (and you) are lip-synching!

2:52 PM

 
Blogger Lloyd Thaxton said...

TO Bill , Chuck, Ken and Gary:

Wow! You are the first MPs to check in. And so many questions already. I'm going to try and sort out the questions and answer them in a special posting. What I'm trying to get first is what kind of things you want to hear about.

Gary asked about a Lloyd Thaxton DVD. I have a great one on the drawing board. I just want to know how many people are really interested. There are so many DVD's out today, I don't want to be just one of the bunch. It's got to be special.

Let me know what you would want on a DVD. Guests? Dancing? Funny bits? Lip-sync contests? My thought is that all DVDs have guests. I prefer featuring the kids (you used to be those kids, you know).

If you recommend the blog to others, make sure they leave their email addresses when they comment. That way I can add their name to my email list for future announcements.


Lloyd

3:25 PM

 
Blogger Bob said...

Dear Lloyd:

Thanks for inviting me to join your club (again). The Lloyd Thaxton Show was a club my friends and I joined, informally.

The humor in your show(s)(I also liked Fight Back!)and your book, Stuff Happens, must come from your philosophy of life. It's one that I also have (maybe partially from watching your show(s)) and that is "Don't ever loose your sense of humor". I keep finding out that I need it, to get through life.

Thanks for setting up the blog.

Bob

6:00 PM

 
Blogger Bob said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6:05 PM

 
Blogger David said...

Hi Lloyd,

I've read all your posts on the blog and if this is an example of stuff to come, I'd say: Don't change anything! Love the stories, love the rants, and love the humor.

Thanks for the invite. I'll be back!

8:28 PM

 
Blogger EV Rider said...

Dear Lloyd,

Was 'The Lloyd Thaxton Show' ever intended to be the West Coast's answer to 'American Bandstand'?

Probably not, but it was very much a thrill to be part of one or two of your live programs back in 1964, win the dance contest with my high school sweetheart and wife-to-be, (and have to choose between two winners prizes; both artists and record albums seemingly unknown to me or mine at the time - 'James Brown and the Flames' and 'The Free-Wheeling Bob Dylan', --whoa, this was really and truly before the huge cultural revolution that altered a whole generation, and lets not forget, it was a musical revolution that got the movement started.

I'm sure you will be the first to agree, we lived in a kinder, gentler place back then before we began to realize the full horror of what it meant that American kids (average age:19) were killing and dying in Vietnam.

Forty plus years later, who could have imagined our country would have descended so far down yet another dead end road, and war is still as ugly as it ever was.

Thank you for awarding me Bob Dylan's album way back when, because 'Papa's Got a Brand New Bag' might not have helped me to understand the deeper issues my generation was about to face in the same way as 'Blowin' In the Wind' really did.

Meeska, mooska, mouseketeer, Lloyd Thaxton's 'Mouse Pack' now is here.

6:00 AM

 
Blogger BiLL Earl said...

The "Blond Frankenstein-looking guy"...

Does anyone else remember him?

I was shocked in early 1966 when they changed the format from the malt shop and dancing to what appeared to be a bigger stage, and several younger performers..one was this tall, blondish, very wooden young man who ALSO would lip sync and do bits with Lloyd.

I'm looking forward to Lloyd shining some light on this long forgotten "John Tesh-esque" guy, and IF he ever stayed in the business, and where he is TODAY..

if he's still alive, he'd be about 62 today

I also remember Lloyd's 1977 one-shot "revival" of his show...anyone have a video of that 1977 show?

So any reader here know WHO the blond young man was that "teamed w/ Lloyd" on his 1966 "restructured" shows?

12:47 PM

 
Blogger Lloyd Thaxton said...

To Bill Earl.

You asked about the new guy who, with Lynne Marta, joined the LT Show in 1966. His name was (is) Mike Storm. I don't know where he is today but after he left the show he had a good career as an actor in soap operas.

Love the fact you have a Dawk.

And, it's an honor to talk to you as well.

Lloyd

3:52 PM

 
Blogger BiLL Earl said...

Thank you, Lloyd. I looked "Michael Storm" up on the web, and oh yes, he's the guy I remember.

He's been on One Life To Live since 1969.

Sometime when you have a chance, Lloyd, could you let us know the thinking behind the RADICAL format change for your show in 1966..I mean, your show wasn't broken, why did "they" try to fix it?

If I recall the 1966 format didn't last long at all.

Did they think by bringing Storm in it would attract a younger audience?

Hey, I was 15 in early 1966 and HIS joining turned me OFF.

I watched your 1977 show with great pleasure..the magic was still there.

Sometime you should explain to those who don't know, just WHAT a "Dawk" is!

I'll be reading your blog regularly.

P.S. YOU should have been the host of California Buyline instead of Horowitz, who seemed to me too "rich living" and "wealthy appearing" to be a watchdog for consumers.

Again, thanks for replying to my big question about Mr.Storm.

5:29 PM

 
Blogger Gary said...

Lloyd,
As for what groups we'd like to see, well there are so many it would be impossible to pick out just a few. For many years it has been rumored that only about 30 of your shows have survived and are tucked away in a footage house
somewhere. If this is correct, then it would mean that you would have limited choices to include on your DVD. If so, maybe you could list the artists and we could all give you feedback on a tangible list rather than have everyone
throw out their favorite fantasy group? And if there are more than
the 30 shows that survived, maybe you could give some sort of indication how large your vault of choices would be?
Personally, I think people watched the show more for the guests than the dancing or lip-synching BUT I think you could mix the DVD release up enough that it would be great for everybody to watch all over again...and again....and again....just like the old shows. Start off with some dancing scenes, lip synching, guest time, more dancing, another guest, etc. It would be a BLAST from the past to watch "new" (old) episodes again! I know for a fact there are many collectors out there who would purchase these DVDs AND even some casual watchers as well. I don't think Dick Clark's BEST OF BANDSTAND tapes did well because he didn't mix it up enough and he also used clips that people weren't that interested in seeing. YOU, on the other hand, can get info straight from the fan's mouth, and we are here to help you! I don't think you realize just how many people fondly remember your show and still talk about it today. Not to pat myself on the back or anything, but I do realize it.....I collect vintage music clips like this (as do MANY MANY others) and I would LOVE to help you out on a project like this. All you need to do is ask and we, the fans, are there.
Gary

6:18 PM

 
Blogger EV Rider said...

Lloyd,

I agree with Gary and think his suggestions regarding what content to include are very good, especially if you can provide some more details of what archival material actually exists.

In the meantime, here's a piece of historical trivia you and others might find interesting:

What was the name of America's first teenage dance television program from the early fifties?

The name of the program (according to Hollywood's Celebrity Corner) was called 'Soupy's Soda Shop', but no hints as to who hosted it ... ?!?

Answers on a Wink Martindale couch-potato coaster pleeze, and let's try to leave Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis, Jr. getting pie-faced out of this for the time being, (though they apparently did get pie-faced, at a later date, on a different program, but with the same host).

You gotta laugh, or you'd cry.

4:59 AM

 
Blogger THE ROCK RELIC said...

Sounds to me, HC, like it's picking up momentum (not to mention a little lint here and there). SO many memories to share here ... one of which was my favorite, The Byrds' live Feel A Whole Lot Better (when you're gone), which is probably what the engineers were singin' when they jacked up their amps at the last second!
Question: What was the average production time, from drawing-board to show time?

11:06 PM

 
Blogger Gary said...

I have posted this same message elsewhere on Lloyd's blog but I think it should be posted here.
I collect a number of things, including old TV Guides for TV references. I have compiled a list of guests (and some songs) from Lloyd's show. It is far from complete but it is a start! If anybody is interested in a copy, please email me at garyb558@yahoo.com
and I will send an attachment of them.
Gary

4:50 AM

 
Blogger Sharone Rosen said...

I was so excited to see your blog... clicked over from Ken Levine's... I was also a big fan in the '60s! My friend Vickie & I watched your show everyday after school... especially fun since Vickie's VERY YOUNG, VERY HANDSOME Father looked like you (so much so, he was often asked for your autograph... don't worry, he was always nice to your fans!)

10:04 AM

 
Anonymous Annette Funicello said...

"Mouse Pack" seems a little weak. How about calling everybody "Mouseketeers"!

9:10 AM

 
Blogger turtlesoup said...

Mister Lloyd Thaxton;
You, sir, deserve a boatload of thanks. This is Howard Kaylan blogging here. I am (and always was) the lead singer for the Turtles. My fondest television memories are of doing your show, Mr.T. And we did wind up doing them all; Sullivan included. Still, you were the man then, and by the sound of your blog, you are the man for this millenium as well.
Mark (my partner) and I have literally been trying to find you for years. I am so thrilled that you have a high profile presence on the web. I gotta thank you, man. For showing us that showbiz could be fun--not just stressful. You have no idea how far "humor in music" has carried us. Thanks to you, Lloyd, we have enjoyed a 43 year career and it literally began on your show.
Kudos my friend. Wonderful to know that you will actually read these words.
Please get back to me and we will catch up on everything that has happened since 1967.
Your buddy from Flo, Eddie and the Turtles,
Howard Kaylan

5:28 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow...Lloyd Thaxton! A devoted follower of your show..me...wants to say thank you, FINALLY for all the MUSIC you gave us. I was happily watching MST "Monster A go-Go" last night, and "Joel" mentioned YOUR NAME..and after loudly proclaiming who you were, and who I saw on your show, ad nauseum to my grown up children, I decided that I would look you up. and that is my story. Thank you, Lloyd!
Christine

12:38 PM

 
Anonymous mari said...

Lloyd,

I watched your show everyday and if I remember correctly also on Saturday nites around 10;30 pm. Can you help me with this its driving me crazy. I remember seeing you do finger puppets one time to a song about Juan and jose. What was the name of that song and who sang it? Everyone
thinks I,m crazy and there was no such song
Thanks

Mari2329@aol.com

9:27 AM

 
Anonymous Mix said...

Mr. Thaxton,

My sister danced on your show and she was just asking if there could be any videos of the show. I hope you do put together a dvd. I'm sure a lot of the kids (now adults) would love to see themselves back in the day. My sister said she still has the dress she wore on the show.

2:55 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would love to be able to revisit your show.

4:56 AM

 

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