the history of television, there probably was not a more durable and versatile
personality than Steve Allen. Dating back to 1950, when he made the guest circuit on
such programs as This is Show Business and What's My Line?, and continuing through the
early 1980's when he hosted NBC's The Big Show, the Steve Allen Comedy Hour and the
Emmy Awards Show, as well as four seasons of his award-winning Meeting of Minds on PBS,
there were few weeks when Allen did not grace the tube on one network or another.
Some of his television career highlights include:
- Created and hosted the "Tonight
Show." (September 27, 1954 - January 25, 1957) When Steve left the show,
the format was continued by Jack Paar, Johnny Carson and Jay Leno. It remains the highest
rated series on late night television, and is the longest running entertainment series in
here for a classic comedy slideshow graphic.
- Starred in the critically-acclaimed NBC series "The Steve Allen Show." (June 24, 1956 -
1960). This Sunday night show had a neck-and-neck rating battle with Ed Sullivan's
Sunday night CBS show, which saw Steve in the lead one week and Sullivan ahead the
next. Regulars were Louis Nye, Tom Poston, Don Knotts, Dayton Allen, Gabe Dell, Pat
Harrington, Skitch Henderson and announcer Gene Rayburn.
- Starred in numerous other Steve
Allen shows (1960 - 76) for ABC, CBS and various syndication companies, including
episodes of late night comedies which David Letterman has credited as the
single biggest inspiration for his show today.
- Created the award-winning Meeting
of Minds (1977-1981), one of the most popular series presented by the Public Broadcasting
- Continued to appear in many television programs through recent years. (complete list, click here).
In its 45 Year Anniversary issue published on April 4, 1998,
TV Guide featured Steve in its "Titans of Talk" section and said:
"Let's face it, the guy has done everything involving
television except make house calls to repair sets....Wait, that might be him at the door
now. But first and foremost Steve Allen's distinction hinges on his being the
first--and some still say foremost-- host of The Tonight Show, virtually
inventing the late-night form. Says Steve Lawrence, 'Turn on Leno or Letterman and
you'll see what Steve created.' But Allen's contributions extend beyond the late
shift. Host, co-host, guest, panelist, walk-on, it doesn't seem to matter--his
mastering of the brilliant ad lib always brightens the show and carries the day. He
acts, too, in everything from Homicide to The Love Boat, and has created
the unerringly smart Meeting of Minds. With those glasses, pompadours hair
and cackling laugh, he appears to be the squarest guy in the room but is the life of the
party. Most often, in fact, he's its host."
-- While Supplies Last!
You can own a hard-cover,
guaranteed authentic autographed copy of
Only $19.95 plus s&h
Steve Allen's 38th book is an autobiography covering his fifty years
in radio and television. Filled with comedy, both on- and
off-camera, this is Allen's first-person look at the Golden Age of
TV. Hi-Ho, Steverino includes Steve's experiences as creator and
first host of the Tonight Show, and his years as star of his own
primetime comedy series The Steve Allen Show, where he worked with
such gifted comedy players as Don Knotts, Tom Poston, Louis Nye, Pat
Harrington, Jr., Gabriel Dell, Bill Dana, Dayton Allen, Buck Henry,
Tim Conway, The Smothers Brothers, and Jim Nabors. In recalling the
glory years of these series, Allen reminisces about getting to know
such luminous guests as Jack Kerouac, Lenny Bruce, Elvis Presley,
and Jerry Lee Lewis. There's a chapter on Allen's award-winning PBS
series Meeting of Minds, and reports on his other comedy-and-talk
shows, series and specials, in which he relates on-the-air TV
boners, mistakes, and technical mishaps that are now part of the
comic folklore of television history. Along the way, Steve Allen
pays tribute to Arthur Godfrey, Ernie Kovacs, Jack Paar, Dave
Garroway, Jerry Lester, and other video pioneers.
here for online ordering information.
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on how to order online!
Makes a great gift!