George Leslie Goebel was an American humorist and comedian. He was best known as the star of his own weekly comedy variety television series, The George Gobel Show, broadcasting from 1954 to 1959 on NBC, on CBS from 1959 to 1960, he was a familiar panelist on the NBC game show Hollywood Squares. George Gobel was a skilled guitar player, as such was issued a specially designed electric guitar in his name commissioned by the Gibson guitar company in 1959. Gibson chose "George Gobel" as a model name, as Gobel was one of the most well known television personalities at the time with a nationally broadcast show five nights a week. Gibson believed their new model guitar would enjoy greater exposure on national television, as opposed to naming the model after a lesser known jazz musician, for example. Gobel accompanied himself with this guitar on a number of his comedy routines, he was born George Leslie Goebel in Chicago, Illinois, on May 20, 1919. His father, Hermann Goebel, working as a butcher and grocer, had emigrated to the United States in the 1890s with his parents from the Austrian Empire.
His mother, Lillian Goebel, was a native of Illinois, as was her mother, while Lillian's father, a tugboat captain, had immigrated from Scotland. Following his graduation from Theodore Roosevelt High School in Chicago in 1937, Gobel pursued an entertainment career as a country music singer, performing on the National Barn Dance on WLS radio and on KMOX in St. Louis. In 1942 Gobel married Alice Rose Humecki. During World War II, he enlisted in the United States Army Air Forces and served as a flight instructor in AT-9 aircraft at Altus, in B-26 Marauder bombers at Frederick, Oklahoma, he resumed his career as an entertainer after the war, although he decided to focus predominantly on comedy rather than just singing. Much in a 1969 appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, Gobel joked about his stateside wartime service: "There was not one Japanese aircraft that got past Tulsa." Gobel debuted his comedy series on NBC on October 2, 1954. It showcased his quiet, homespun style of humor, a low-key alternative to what audiences had seen on Milton Berle's shows.
A huge success, the popular series made the crew-cut Gobel one of the biggest comedy stars of the 1950s. The weekly show featured vocalist Peggy King and actress Jeff Donnell as well as numerous guest artists, including such stars as Jimmy Stewart, Henry Fonda, Fred MacMurray Kirk Douglas and Tennessee Ernie Ford. In 1955, Gobel won an Emmy Award for "most outstanding new personality."On October 24, 1954, Gobel did a twelve-minute spot on Light's Diamond Jubilee, a two-hour TV special broadcast on all four US television networks of the time. Gobel and his business manager David P. O'Malley formed a production company, Gomalco, a composite of their last names, Gobel and O'Malley; this company produced the first four years of the 1957–63 television series Leave It to Beaver. The centerpiece of Gobel's comedy show was his monologue about his supposed past situations and experiences, with stories and sketches about his real-life wife, played by actress Jeff Donnell. Gobel's hesitant shy delivery and penchant for tangled digressions were the chief sources of comedy, more important than the actual content of the stories.
His monologues popularized several catchphrases, notably "Well, I'll be a dirty bird", "You can't hardly get them like that no more" and "Well there now". Gobel's show used some of television's top writers of the era: Hal Kanter, Jack Brooks and Norman Lear. Peggy King was a regular on the series as a vocalist, the guest stars ranged from Shirley MacLaine and Evelyn Rudie to Bob Feller, Phyllis Avery and Vampira. Gobel labeled himself "Lonesome George," and the nickname stuck for the rest of his career; the TV show sometimes included a segment in which Gobel appeared with a guitar, started to sing got sidetracked into a story, with the song always left unfinished after fitful starts and stops, a comedy approach that prefigured the Smothers Brothers. He had a special version of the Gibson L-5 archtop guitar constructed featuring diminished dimensions of neck scale and body depth, befitting his own smaller stature. Several dozen of this "L-5CT" or "George Gobel" model were produced in the late 1950s and early 1960s.
He played the harmonica. In 1957, three U. S. Air Force B-52 Stratofortress bombers made the first nonstop round-the-world flight by turbojet aircraft. One of the bombers was called "Lonesome George." The crew appeared on Gobel's primetime television show and recounted the mission, which took them 45 hours and 19 minutes. Lonesome George, the non-breeding Galapagos tortoise, the last of its subspecies and that died in June 2012, was named after Gobel. From 1958 to 1961, Gobel appeared in Las Vegas at the El Rancho Vegas and in Reno at the Mapes Hotel. In 1961, George Gobel and Sam Levene starred as Erwin and Patsy in Let It Ride, an original Broadway musical based on the 1935 original Broadway play Three Men on a Horse co-authored by George Abbott and John Cecil Holm which had an initial Broadway run of 835 performances starring Sam Levene as Patsy. With a book written by Abram S. Ginnes and a score by Jay Livingston and Ray
William Peter "Bill" Tavoulareas was a Greek-American petroleum businessman who served as President and Chief Executive of the Mobil Corporation in the 1970s and 1980s. He was best known for his libel lawsuit against The Washington Post, due to the newspaper's investigative journalism articles criticizing him, he was a close friend of U. S. President George H. W. Bush and Greek Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou. Tavoulareas was born in Messenia and moved to the United States, to Queens, New York, at age 15, he earned a Bachelor of Laws degree from St. John's University School of Law. In 1982 Tavoulareas was unsuccessful in bringing $2 million libel suit against the Washington Post for saying he used his corporate position to "set up his son" in a shipping business; the initial jury's award was put aside by the judge hearing the case because he said Tavoulareas had not proven "actual malice". The Court of Appeals confirmed the ruling, finding the story true and holding that "the record abounds with uncontradicted evidence of nepotism in favor of Peter ".
He succeeded Rawleigh Jr. at Mobil. He was on the Boards of Aramco, Bankers Trust, Philip Morris, St. John's University, Georgetown University, Athens College, St. Francis Hospital, a Governor of New York Hospital, served on the Boards of numerous charities both nationally and internationally, he was a Knight of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta. He died at age 75 in Boca Raton, where he lived in his years
Milton Ager was an American composer. Ager was born to a Jewish family in Chicago, the sixth of nine children. Leaving school with only three years of formal high-school education, he taught himself to play the piano and embarked on a career as a musician. After spending time as an accompanist to silent movies, he moved to New York City to write music. During World War I he served as a morale officer. Ager was a music publisher in partnership with his frequent musical collaborator, lyricist Jack Yellen, he moved to Hollywood. On his death, Milton Ager was interred in the Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles. Ager was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1979. In 2007, a revue of Ager's music called Vampin' Lady opened in New Hope, performed by singer Joyce Moody under the direction of Earl Wentz and transferred to New York City as part of the American Composer Series. Ager's wife was columnist Cecelia Ager. Ager was the father of columnist Shana Alexander. Ager's niece, Joy Eden Harrison, a singer-songwriter with three albums to her credit, claims his work has been influential on her own musical career.
Among the best known Milton Ager songs are: "Rockaway Hunt Fox Trot" "Erin Is Calling" "Tom and Harry and Jack" "Everything is Peaches Down in Georgia", With George W. Meyer "France We Have Not Forgotten You" "Anything is Nice" "Freckles" "There's a Lot of Blue-Eyed Marys Down in Maryland" "A Young Man's Fancy" "I'm Nobody's Baby", his first big hit "Lovin' Sam" "Who Cares?" "Stay Away From Louisville Lou" [also known as "Louisville Lou" "Hard Hearted Hannah" "I Wonder What's Become of Sally" "Big Bad Bill" "I Certainly Could" "Hard-To-Get Gertie" "Ain't She Sweet" "Vo-Do-De-O" "I Still Love You" "If You Don't Love Me" "Oh Baby" "Glad Rag Doll" "Happy Days Are Here Again" "I May Be Wrong" "Happy Feet" - a notable version is by Canadian children's entertainer Fred Penner "Some Day We'll Meet Again" "Trust in Me" Works for Broadway include: What's in a Name? - musical - composer Rain or Shine - musical - co-composer Murray Anderson's Almanac - revue - co-composer Jaques Cattell Press: ASCAP biographical dictionary of composers and publishers.
Fourth edition. R. R. Bowker, New York 1980. Stanley Sadie, H. Wiley Hitchcock: The New Grove Dictionary of American Music. Grove's Dictionaries of Music, New York, N. Y. 1986. Colin Larkin: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music. Third edition. Macmillan, New York, N. Y. 1998. Milton Ager at the Songwriters Hall of Fame Milton Ager on IMDb