Stars Of Jazz

ABC (ended 1958)




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Stars Of Jazz

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Stars of Jazz was a showcase for jazz music and the musicians who played it. Hosted by Bobby Troup, himself a jazz influenced pianist and songwriter, the show featured the cream of West Coast jazz musicians in performance and conversation along with appearances by musicians from other places playing in the Los Angeles area. The show started in 1956 as a local program in Los Angeles on KABC and won many awards. After the ratings success of some jazz-themed TV specials the ABC network decided to give the show a six week trial as a network show beginning April 18, 1958. The ratings were decent enough for the shows run to be extended until November 1958. Another factor in the networks interest was the low cost of producing the show. Since the show was a labor of love most musicians accepted scale for their appearance on the show. Dave Brubeck was paid scale, $21.00, while he and his quartet were usually paid $2,500 a week. Bobby Troup stated it was "fair treatment of the artists" that attracted star musicians to the show. "We present the musicians as men of stature. We try to enlighten our audience about the history and techniques of jazz. If we take the music of a certain period or a certain performer, we do our best to show all sides of it." Photographer Ray Avery published a book of photos he took of the musicians who appeared on the show. The book "Stars of Jazz" was published in 1997 by Jazz Media, Copenhagen, Denmark.moreless