Written by
Bob Stumpel

November 6

Ray Charles On The Tonight Show With Hal March (1962)

'62 TV TS NM

Paar and Kennedy (1959).

When after 3 years, in March 1962, Jack Paar left the The Jack Paar Tonight Show, the format was programmed as The Tonight Show for the first time. TV historians call this the “second interregnum“, as for the next 6 or 7 months the program was presented by numerous successive hosts, including Art Linkletter, Joey Bishop, Merv Griffin, Peter Lind Hayes and Mary Healy, Soupy Sales, Jerry Lewis, Arlene Francis, Hugh Downs, Groucho Marx and Hall March – before in October 1962 Johnny Carson arrived, and the program was called The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson.

However, on 30 August 1962, the TV page of the Herald Statesman, a newspaper from Yonkers (NY) announced the program under the title Tonight, to be broadcast on Channel 4 (WNBC TV), from 11:15 to 1:00: “Guest host Hal March has quite a line-up of stars… Carroll Baker, Cesare Siepi, Jan Murray, Jack Dempsey, Ray Charles and Barry Gray”.


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