Stories and insight in the world of showbiz and beyond.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


I’m bahhhck! Sorry if you kept tuning in and finding the same oh, same oh, each time. Important stuff loomed and I had to take care of it. One of the things I did was read a book by Bob Green titled, Be True To Your School. The book was recommended to me by my good friend, famous TV comedy writer, producer, director and baseball announcer, Ken Levine.

Be True To Your School is an actual diary of a high school student during the entire year of 1964. I found it fascinating because that was the year
The Lloyd Thaxton Show was really zapping along. The kids in this book were the same kids that were on my show and it really took me back into a wonderful time.

Bob Green lived just outside Columbus, Ohio and he mentions hearing the Beatles for the first time on the Ed Sullivan Show, listening to The Beach Boys and all the other great music groups of that year. Here is this teen-ager, way across the country from me, and he mentions watching
The Lloyd Thaxton Show. Wow! Unreal! That really hit me. He was, like most of you who bother to read this blog, one of my fans. It was almost like being there, again.

It was also a reminder of how much times have changed. Oh, how your grandchildren would have loved to have lived in those times. Remember when your mother told you to go out and have fun, “but be back before the streetlights come on?” How you cruised in your car with your friends and if you got into trouble, the police told you to go home?

When I was directing segments for America’s Funniest People on ABC, I was in Detroit with a black cameraman sighting locations for a shoot. He was a teen-ager in Detroit in the 60s and he told how he lived in this great middle class neighborhood (his father worked for the Ford Motor Company). He and his friends would jump on their bikes in the morning, ride all the way into the city. They didn’t return home until just before dark (before-the-street-lights-come-on). I remember how he lamented the fact that all those middle class families were now gone. No more middle class jobs did everybody in.

It was amazing. I grew up in a white neighborhood not 40 miles away in Toledo, Ohio. It was like he was telling my story.

There was an article in the LA Times a couple of days ago that lamented the fact that the ratings for this season’s “American Idol” were dropping fast. The problem, according to the article, “children and young adults are the first to bail on a show that’s getting crow’s feet.” They mentioned how difficult it is just to keep their treasured 18 to 49 year old audience on board.

Nowhere in the article, do they mention anyone over 49. Don’t they know that you are the most loyal audience out there? When you were running things, the airplanes ran on time, you’re kids could go out alone, people had middle class jobs that put their kids through college without student loans, and … and … well, the list is too long to list here. I’m sure you can add to it.

You baby boomers were the greatest. Yet no body seems to want your advice on what is wrong with the world today. But, you can be thankful that you were there and done that. No one can take that away. You can be proud that you ran a good ship. Hopefully, the young people of the world will wake up and be true to their age, as much as you are being true to yours. You are still the greatest.


Stay tuned.


Blogger Gary said...

I think a lot of what "made us" was the music we grew up with. We weren't listening to songs of gang rape, killing cops, or suicides. At least I wasn't....I was listening to FUN music. Dance songs (Peppermint Twist, Mashed Potato, The Popeye....), surf & car songs (Shut Down, Fun Fun Fun, Surf City, Tell 'em I'm Surfin'....), rock & roll (anything by Buddy Holly, Elvis, early Beatles....). It was FUN FUN FUN back then! And a large part of that were the DJ's on the radio and the TV hosts of the dance shows (you ALL know who I mean!). I want to THANK ALL OF THOSE PEOPLE!!!!!!!!!

5:51 PM

Blogger Lloyd Thaxton said...

Thanks Gary. You're RIGHT again.


6:36 PM

Blogger Gary said...

from the bottom of my heart.

6:50 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sally Gordon of the Murmaids said they were on your show. Do you have a kinnetta you could upload to youtube? I am


8:04 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeez, I even miss the old air raid sirens! I grew up "where the action was" here in Hollywood, and though I missed the 1940's and 50's, I really feel lucky to have experienced the 60's here. It really was a better time in every way, and thanks for being there with us Lloyd! KHJ & KCOP still rule in my heart!

2:49 AM

Blogger Gary said...

Hey Uncle Lloyd!
Is there a reason you posted this last blog in LARGER PRINT than other posts? Are you trying to tell us something?
Now, where are my bifocals.......

1:53 PM

Blogger Lloyd Thaxton said...

To john anonymouse:

You'll have to wait for the DVD.

To Gary:

You sly guy you. you are right again. You caught my bit of subtleness. I put the print in a larger font for the reading glasses crowd. Me and the rest of you.

Another example of "being true to your age."


7:40 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

What I don't get with all the media demographics, is why the powers that be think the 18-35 (or any younger-than-me demographic) is so great?

Isn't my money the same shade of green as theirs? Don't I generally make a helluva lot more than they do, because I've worked longer? Meaning, I have more disposable income to spend than the younger folks.

I think the media is being short-sighted zeroing in on the same age group for almost every TV show, movie, etc.

Doesn't make sense to me, but maybe I'm just senile in my old age...

8:47 PM

Blogger Lloyd Thaxton said...

Hey Tex:

The reason the "Powers that be" are so hooked on the 18 - 35 age demographic (actually, it is up to 49 now) is because they have determined (rightly or wrongly) that anyone older than that is now so set in his/her ways that they are no longer influenced by commercials. If you started using Tide, for example, at age 20, you would most likely use Tide for the rest of your washing days. So it is useless for a sponsor to spend money on you trying to change your mind.

Like I said, "rightly or wrongly," that is the rationale.

Dr. Science
I know more than you do.

10:12 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another reason for the "powers that be", who are mainly major ad agencies, are reluctant to cater to older demographics is that the cost of advertising to people 55+ is higher. Because older people are set in their ways and hesitant to try a different product, TV and print ads have to be more detailed than normal. That's why ads for things like the motorized chairs and retirement property are usually a minute long on television, or are a large-size ad in print. Many TV ads aimed at 55+ are flat-out made as informercials.

Time-Life's half hour on 50s oldies comes to mind.

Radio spots aimed at that demographic are usually the standard 60 seconds, but because it's radio, and not print or TV, more spots have to be produced to make up for the details.

Most ad agencies, who are mainly run by men over 55, don't want to spend the extra cost. It cuts into their return on investment. And like any other kind of industry, they're in business to make money.

Ages 54 and below are still catered to. The actual "Magic Number" for "cutoff" is 55 and above.

The most desirable demo is women 24-49.

If science could find a way to make the average human life span 120 years or so, then the ad industry might change their outlook.

FYI: I turn 58 this year, and I work at a studio that produces many radio spots.

8:46 AM

Blogger Shar said...

When is the DVD coming out??? I was on your dance show in the 60's and that was so great!!!
I even got in trouble with my school because we shipped school to go to it, turns out the lady in the office had a teenage daughter that also watched the show LOL BUSTED!!!!!

9:53 AM


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