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OZARK JUBILEE: A LIVING LEGACY (TV)

Summary

A documentary about the "Ozark Jubilee," a television country music showcase. In the January of 1955, when television is in its infancy, a local television station in Springfield, Missouri creates the "Ozark Jubilee," the first nationally-seen country music television program. It proves to be an instant and surprising hit with audiences around the country, drawing huge ratings and the show's stage, the Jewell Theater, is regularly packed with live audience members. During this time, the creative forces behind the show, including creator Si Siman, are eager to prove to the networks that country music is viable on the medium of television. The program is organized into a variety show format, featuring music, comedy, and dance segments. The show's laid-back and charismatic host, country singer Red Foley, contributes to its accessibility, as do many of its regular performers, who quickly become celebrities in the country music world, such as Brenda Lee and Porter Wagoner. Many others are able to launch entire careers based on their appearances on "Ozark Jubilee." In addition, the show attempts to experiment with television production techniques, and its live broadcast format encourages "perfectionism" from its crew and guests. The town of Springfield itself has mixed reactions to the show: while it attracts a great deal of income for the town and makes it one of the primary centers of country music in the nation, some resent the show's influence. When Foley decides to move to Springfield, it brings about a rivalry from Nashville, the other major center of country music, and from competing television sponsors looking to gain a foothold in the business. In 1961, it is announced that the "Ozark Jubilee" will not be returning to the air. The reasons for its decline are ambiguous and multi-faceted: some blame Foley's drinking problems and charges of tax evasion (which were later proven to be false). Others believe that the people of Springfield as well as television executives pressured the show into cancellation, while others blame troubles with unions. In any event, following the end of the show, many of the regular performers go on to tour the country, and Red Foley dies fro respiratory failure in 1968. A short-lived spinoff of the "Ozark Jubilee," called the "Five Star Jubilee," airs in the summer of 1961, but does not garner much success. Regardless, the impact of the "Ozark Jubilee" on country music is far-reaching, and continues to be felt to this day. Includes clips from "Ozark Jubilee," such as: like Eddy Arnold performing "Anytime"; a tractor mower commercial from the show; a comedy routine between Foley and Uncle Cyp; Jimmy Gately, Harold Morrison, and Bobby Lord performing "Alabam"; Leroy Van Dyke performing "Heartaches by the Number"; the "Massey-Ferguson Jingle" performed by The Lamppost Four, footage from the second episode from January 29th, 1955; Arnold with "Cattle Call"; Patsy Cline singing "Lovesick Blues"; Wanda Jackson singing "I'd Rather Have You"; "Cimarron Roll On" from the Tall Timber Trio; Foley singing "Take My Hand, Precious Lord"; Gene Autry and Chet Atkins' appearances on the program, Lee's and Wagoner's first television appearances; footage of Minnie Pearl, Roy Acuff, Bob Wills, Sonny James, Suzie Arden, The Collins Kids, Marvin Rainwater, The Foggy River Boys, Webb Pierce, Carleen Carroll, Tabby West, and Jim Reeves; Tex Ritter singing "Burning Sand"; June Carter performing "Eight More Miles to Louisville"; Snooky Lanson with "I Love You So Much It Hurts"; Billy Walker singing "The Image of Me"; and a clip of Foley performing "Peace in the Valley."

Details

  • NETWORK: KOZK-TV
  • DATE: 2003
  • RUNNING TIME: 0:57:41
  • COLOR/B&W: Color
  • CATALOG ID: B:77136
  • GENRE: Public affairs/Documentaries
  • SUBJECT HEADING: Public affairs/documentaries
  • SERIES RUN: KOZK-TV - TV, 2003
  • COMMERCIALS: N/A

CREDITS

  • Jim Baker … Executive Producer
  • Arlen Diamond … Executive Producer
  • Tom Carter … Producer, Director
  • Gary Ellison … Producer
  • Noah Stanik … Associate Producer, Writer
  • Gary Ellison … Interviewer, Interviewee
  • Dale Moore … Narrator
  • Brenda Lee … Interviewee
  • Porter Wagoner … Interviewee
  • Eddy Arnold … Interviewee
  • Leroy Van Dyke … Interviewee
  • Billy Walker … Interviewee
  • Joe Slattery … Interviewee
  • John Rumble … Interviewee
  • Wayne Glenn … Interviewee
  • Rosie Siman … Interviewee
  • Fred Rains … Interviewee
  • Larry Wood … Interviewee
  • Speedy Haworth … Interviewee
  • Homer Boyd … Interviewee
  • George Culp … Interviewee
  • Truman Krumholz … Interviewee
  • Roy Acuff
  • Suzie Arden
  • Chet Atkins
  • Aunt Sap
  • Gene Autry
  • Carleen Carroll
  • June Carter
  • Patsy Cline
  • Collins Kids, The
  • Foggy River Boys, The
  • Red Foley
  • Jimmy Gately
  • Wanda Jackson
  • Sonny James
  • Lamppost Four, The
  • Snooky Lanson
  • Bobby Lord
  • Harold Morrison
  • Minnie Pearl
  • Webb Pierce
  • Marvin Rainwater
  • Jim Reeves
  • Tex Ritter
  • Si Siman
  • Tall Timber Trio, The
  • Uncle Cyp
  • Tabby West
  • Bob Wills
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