Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Some Of Your TV Themes Comments


Here are just some of the responses we received ...

Trivia question for you:

Which Rock and Roll Hall of Fame solo artist sang the theme songs to two different TVs shows that were each on for at least five seasons?

Let me know when you want the answer.

Be Well,

Carl Wiser


Wow!  I had to REALLY give this one some thought.  (I sent Carl my answer … which I admitted was as much a 50/50 guess/answer as I could muster … and, as it turns out, WRONG!!!)

Before we tell YOU guys the answer, let's see if any of YOU can figure it out!!!)  kk

Thanks for the reminder, Kent, but I've been checking them out since you started posting the ones that didn't make the Top 50.

Obviously, this voting was rigged.


Some of MY selections didn't make the prime cut.  (What more evidence do you need?)

I've got my lawyers on it.

As soon as we are replenished with hair dye, count on hearing from them.

Sam Tallerico


LOL ...

Now that the final list has been posted, I can confess that NONE of the votes we received from Georgia were counted.

(Actually, after my Ozarks comment, Missouri pulled out of the competition completely!)  kk

Then again …

And 6 out of the top 10 were on my list! (Honest, I only voted once for each!)

I noticed that myself and others liked the candy connections: M&M&M&M. Mission Impossible, Mary Tyler Moore Show, Monkees and MASH.

I enjoyed all the memories from EVERY theme posted. 


Hi Kent: 

Just a wee bit of trivia for you ...

Angela was a character on Taxi who had a phone answering job and a voice that captivated all the cabbies. Turned out she was a fatty. Bob James wrote "Angela" for her episode but it was so good, they made it the opening theme. 


And then …

I know, I know. I can't help myself with trivia.

Anyway, it was Mr. Carlson who "thought turkeys could fly," not Les Nessman. I just watched it yesterday. 


lol ... It's on again tonight, too!

Looks like I screwed all kinds of things up putting this together!  (Read on!)  lol

That's ok ...

It least it's engaging (and entertaining) the readers ...

Over 9300 have already stopped by so far today ... and we haven't even hit The Top Ten yet!  (kk)

>>>Michael Tucker (Stuart Markowitz, whose Venus Flytrap sexual technique had the entire country buzzing for more information as to how to exactly perform it), his TV (and real life) wife Jill Eikenberry (Ann Kelsey) kk

I'm sure it was just a typo, but the technique was the 'Venus Butterfly.'  Venus Flytrap was a DJ on WKRP in Cincinnati. :)


LOL … boy, talk about your Freudian slips!!!  Combining the character’s name from WKRP with Stuart’s special technique on LA Law … working on this latest Forgotten Hits / Favorite TV Themes Poll has DEFINITELY taken its toll on me!  (lol)

No more polls this year!  (kk)


I realize it's a lot more work, but since you're celebrating TV theme songs, it would have been nice to give credit to the theme writers.  Some famous names among them.

Mike Post got lots of mentions (as well he should), but Quincy Jones should have been credited with writing the "Sanford & Son" theme.  He also wrote the theme for "Ironside" as well as "Hicky-Burr", the theme for "The Cosby Show".

Or Earle Hagen who wrote the theme to the "Dick Van Dyke Show".  Hagen also wrote "The Fishin' Hole", which was the theme for the Andy Griffith Show, plus "Make Room For Daddy", "That Girl" and "The Mod Squad."

It's THEIR music we're celebrating ... not the stars of the show.

Still, great list.

Doug Thompson (Toronto)

A valid point …

If somebody out there is committed enough (and KNOWLEDGEABLE enough) to put together such a list, I would be willing to edit that into The Top 100 List after it’s been posted.  (I’m honestly not sure just how you’d build a complete and accurate list … but if somebody out there is up to it, I’m all in!)  kk

Great stuff on the TV themes.

Ken Voss


After seeing my Andrew Gold thrown out, I am enjoying the list so far.  I had to admit that I actually KNOW all of these so far, so maybe I won't complain!!!

Clark Besch

Are you referring to the “Golden Girls” theme?

It came in at #75 with 93 votes … so it didn’t miss by much … and DID end up on our Top 100 list now posted to the website …


And then later …

The countdown has been really fun.  Jill and I have enjoyed listening, all the way to the top.


HI, Kent!
I'm really digging the results of the survey!  Kudos to you for all the work you've put into it!
Just a little addition I thought I'd toss your way ... 

I always wondered if they got the station's name from the Cincy AM station that's been around for a long, long time. I used to hear them back in the 60s.  ;) 


And ... if I remember correctly, it was Mr. Carlson who uttered that famous line about the turkeys.  No big deal.
Thanx again!

Yep!  Noted.  (kk)

THANKS, Kent, for mentioning "Karen," possibly the most unwatched TV sitcom in history and one of the least known recorded songs by The Beach Boys!

I posted here to many of those "Beach Boys connections" - 


Surf's UP!


Really enjoying all of the great TV themes!  I like most of them - I couldn't choose a favorite in a million years.
I wanted to mention that the American Bandstand theme being #30 is a nice tribute to Dick Clark, who would have turned 91 on November 30th.

And "77 Sunset Strip"'s theme brings back great memories of walking down Sunset Blvd. 50 years ago!

Also …

There's a full-size statue of The Fonz in a little walkway along the river in downtown Milwaukee.  You can almost see it with Google Earth.

Mike Wolstein

You may recall the TV Themes Brackets we told you about a week ago or so …

Organized by longtime FH Reader Don Effenberger, I was curious how our Top Ten fared in this “alternate” countdown.

Our #10, “Gilligan’s Island,” was first pared with “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.”  Beating them, they went on to defeat “The Addams Family” before taking on (and losing to) “The Jeffersons,” which finished at #21 in our poll.

From here, "The Jeffersons" went all the way to the final round, teeing off against “Cheers” (our #7 favorite.)

“Cheers” beat “Weeds,” “Family Guy,” “Dukes Of Hazard,” “Sanford And Son” and “Batman” to reach the final battle.

“The Beverly Hillbillies” were eliminated in the very first round by “Happy Days.”

“M*A*S*H” beat “The Andy Griffith Show” (now that’s some pretty stiff competition … on OUR list “M*A*S*H” finished at #8 and “The Andy Griffith Show” finished at #11!) … then went on to defeat “Saved By the Bell” and “Hawaii Five-O” before losing to “Mission Impossible,” which was your #3 favorite in our poll.  (It, in turn, was eliminated by “The Jeffersons” in the semi-final round.

“The Monkees” (#6) didn’t even MAKE their list.  (Now how is THAT possible?!?!  Especially when you consider that “Ducktales,” “Charles In Charge,” “South Park,” “Pinky And The Brain” and “Firefly” did!)

“Secret Agent Man” (#5) didn’t make the list either … nor did “The Mary Tyler Moore Show,” our #4 hit!  When you consider that “Bonanza” was overlooked, too, I’ve gotta look at these brackets with an EXTREME grain of salt.  Four of our highest vote-getters never even made the list!  (kk)

Don’s comment on our countdown …

I've retweeted the Top 100 tonight after your final posting! Great work, Kent!

Glad to see WKRP showing -- a program I liked more than you did apparently. Every journalist knows someone who is a variation of Les Nessman!


I think here in Chicago most of the deejays who worked with him would bestow that honor on Les Grobstein … name coincidence aside!  (kk)

I was very impressed by the results of your latest poll. 

The Top 10 could not be any better. 

The Hawaii Five-O theme is such an exciting song from start to finish. 

As a former band geek, I used to love when this one would come up on the music stand.  We may have played it at a slower tempo, but it was still fun.  When I play it on the radio now, you can feel the warm sun coming from the grooves.  It is fun to play it when it is 30 below zero in Wisconsin!  

The Monkees Theme gets more requests here than many of their highest charted records.

Thanks for all of your hard work on this.  With your permission, perhaps

we can count them down on the radio in the future.

Phil Nee – WRCO

Absolutely!  And let us know when so we can run a Listen Live link so that others around the globe can tune in and listen, too.  (kk)

SIDE NOTE:  Phil was originally slated to count down The Top 50 … but then when the Covid numbers started to spike again in Illinois and Wisconsin and more and more folks were being instructed to stay home, we had to kind of kick this idea to the sidelines.  But now … within the context of being able to pre-record a show, I think this would make for a GREAT two hour special on Phil’s “Those Were The Days” program … so stay tuned for more details so we can let you know when to tune in and listen!  (kk)

Hello Kent -

Wishing you Happy Holidays.

Love the theme song contest. 

I had forgotten how many of them I knew and could sing.

Great idea.

Hope to see you at the Happy Together Tour next year where I will again be singing lead for The Turtles.

Rock on!

Ron Dante









Isn't it amazing how songs that were never (or rarely) chart hits -- like, say, TV series' themes -- can, sometimes in 30 seconds or less, strike incredibly deep and heartfelt nostalgic chords within you?   You never thought they would when these shows were first telecast -- but now, looking back, you realize that these TV series were touchstones during your growing up years.  What you learned of life and relationships -- aside from your family and friends -- you absorbed through not just the hit records of the day (each of which was the portrait of an emotion painted with sound) but television.  Alongside the characters on your favorite shows, you vicariously experienced a myriad of life situations and learned how to deal with them.   

As an example, I was too young to get into "The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis" when it first aired between 1959 and 1963.   I did, though, catch it in afternoon reruns at the time when I was making the transition from having girls as friends to having girls as dates.  I didn't realize it at the time, but "Dobie Gillis" (and similar sitcoms of the era) were teaching me how to be a teenager in high school and later college.  Among other things, I caught the plot twist in an early "Dobie Gillis" episode which even the show's writers and producers had not expected to be profound. 

The running theme of "The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis" was, as the title implied, a weekly parade of attractive, interchangeable young starlets whom Dobie would fall for at the start of each episode and then somehow lose.   In one early episode, Dobie is in a lab class when the mousy little co-ed next to him softly murmurs, "I love you."  This was supposed to evoke a laugh -- as, unlike the usual cutie pies who cross Dobie's path, this young woman is not a raving beauty.  She, like the other one-shot women in Dobie's life, was supposed to disappear after that one episode.  But she didn't -- and that was because of the way Shelia James startled the cast and crew by the way chose to bring Zelda Gilroy to life.  Through her presence and delivery, Shelia transformed Zelda from being a one dimensional stereotype into the series' only three dimensional character -- the only one with actual depth. 

As you know, at their peak, The Beatles seemingly had every beautiful girl in the world at their beck and call.  So why, Paul McCartney once asked John Lennon, did you choose Yoko Ono?  "It's different," replied Lennon, "when your WIFE comes along."  And so it was with Dobie Gillis. 

The producers tried to maintain the series premise by bringing in more and more lovely ladies each week and limiting Zelda's appearances, but it was no use.  The chemistry between the characters of Dobie and Zelda was simply too obvious -- and finally the writers wrote to it.  I absorbed all of this as a young teen but didn't realize how intently I had until college, when I found myself attracted to -- surprise surprise -- a girl very much like Zelda.   I was blissfully unaware of the parallel for months until some of my friends began dubbing us "Dobie and Zelda."  At first, I thought that was absurd but slowly it dawned on me that they, to quote The Five Man Electrical Band, were "absolutely right." 

Years later, after moving to L.A., I told Shelia James about this and she assured me that my college experience was far from unique. 

And so, here's the point ... 

Never underestimate the power of television to shape our minds -- our thoughts, our actions, our opinions; our way of dealing with love, laughter and life.

Gary Theroux

"The History of Rock 'n' Roll”