TV is well-populated with shows seeking the next pop music sensation. We see young singers latch on to a song and do all sorts of vocal loop-de-loops impressing you with their lung power and vocal gymnastics, but often suffocating the emotions and depth of the lyrics. These talent search competition shows are entertaining. But I miss the music variety shows that were standard network TV fare. One of my favorites was ABC's THE HOLLYWOOD PALACE. The prime time Saturday night show had terrific guest hosts -- stars such as Fred Astaire, Judy Garland, Bing Crosby, Bette Davis and Joan Crawford. They performed and they also introduced established and new talent. Nancy Wilson was booked on THE HOLLYWOOD PALACE one night. She took an old song, "The Very Thought of You," and made it new again. Her voice was a gift from Heaven. To see and hear what I mean, just click onto this link:
I started my TV career in Milwaukee on the ABC affiliate. I began as a part-timer and, in my last year, I'd graduated to fulltime co-host and associate producer of a live weekday afternoon show with a studio audience. That was 1984. One of our guests was singer Nancy Wilson, in town for an engagement. Regal, warm and appreciative she was. When I moved to Milwaukee for college, I took the two early Nancy Wilson albums with me. For me, it was such a huge thrill having her in person on our show that I just had to call my mother afterwards and gush "Mom! Guess who was on the show today in person? Nancy Wilson!"
With that, here's Nancy Wilson from her Broadway album giving a bossa nova beat to the song Diahann Carroll introduced on Broadway in Richard Rodgers' NO STRINGS. To hear "The Sweetest Sounds," just listen to this.
See what I mean? That's why I loved her for most of my life. Nancy Wilson was wonderful.