Saturday, March 31, 2007

The Ernie Kovacs Record Collection

I get emails at and comments posted here regarding "The Ernie Kovacs Record Collection," which was released on July 15, 1997 on the Varese Sarabande label. Most of the comments have to do with the fact that its difficult to find.

Unfortunately this title is out of print. Varese Sarabande, a company that largely deals in motion picture and television soundtracks, doesn't even have it in their database anymore.

My suggestion is to visit this link at Amazon where you can find copies from dealers (though they are all very expensive). I'd also check online auction sites such as EBAY to try and find a copy. You'll most likely get it there for much cheaper.

The CD is probably out of print because of the fact that it appeals to a very niche market that loves Ernie's work and didn't sell very well. I love it, but that's me. You get the "Oriental Blues," also known as "Ernie's Tune," which was his theme song. You can listen with joy to "Medley: Jalousie (Jealousy)/Sentimental Journey" which was the arrangement he used for the bit with the dancing office furniture. There's "Moritatensanger (Mack The Knife)" from the Three Penny Opera by Bertold Brecht, which was used as the background music for all the oscilloscope gags. In all you get 20 tracks on the CD and can listen to sound samples by visiting the Amazon link I provided above. You also get "Song Of The Nairobi Trio ("Solfeggio)" which is a classic.

Speaking of which, congrats to "Devilbabytales" who guessed that "Solfeggio" is the correct title of "The Nairobi Trio" music. Devil couldn't get the other two parts of the question however, so its up to you fans to go back to the post and see if you can. I'm still waiting for answers to my "Whom Dunnit?" trivia question by the way.

In other EK news, I've found some articles which you ought to go check out on other blogs. They are either about Ernie or mention him:

Paul ("The Comedy Tornado") Venier's Top Ten Favorite TV Shows

The Passionate Moviegoer's Article, "Lemon, Kovacs And Quine". It talks about Jack Lemon and Ernie Kovacs working on Richard Quine's films together. It's a great piece.

I also found an interesting post about "The Song Of The Nairobi Trio" which talks about the song under another title besides "Solfeggio," which was something I had not been aware of. (ED. NOTE 7/29/2010-THIS LINK NO LONGER WORKS)

That's all for today. Its been real folks.

ED. NOTE, DEC. 26TH, 2009:

The Museum Of Broadcast Communications in Chicago has their archives listed online so you can view the list. Some of these listings have a digital file accompanying them for viewing and ⁄ or listening.

"The Ernie Kovacs Record Collection"" is one of these. The file streams as the entire CD, one song played after the other. It is approximately 48 minutes in length.

To hear the file:
  1. Visit this link and sign up. It’s free.

  2. Once you login choose the "Radio" link, put Ernie Kovacs in "Keywords" and check the box at the bottom that says "Digital File Available". Then click submit. The archive listing along with a link to the file will then come up.
Most people who visit my EK sites know I don't usually promote online files because most of the time the person uploading them does not have permission to do so. Many times I'm sent emails with links to EK file downloads which I ignore and delete; this CD is no exception. My assumption here is that a broadcast museum is not just putting up clips without permission.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The Nairobi Trio


Regarding Ernie's famous "Nairobi Trio" sketch:

1. One ape was Ernie and one was Edie. Sometimes a famous celebrity would play the third ape. Name two famous celebrities who played the third ape at some point.

2. What is the name of the song that is always used in this sketch?

For Extra Credit: How did Ernie come across this song and what does the title mean?

OK. Simply post your answer in the form of a comment (all comments are moderated). Once again there are no prizes but you will attain infamy by having your comments on a blog for all to see.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Whom Dunnit?

OK. Here's some Ernie trivia for you. A famous sketch of Ernie's was a game show parody entitled "Whom Dunnit?" Its on the best of collection and many of you have probably seen it. Its a satire on the old celebrity panel game shows of that era such as "What's My Line?" and "I've Got A Secret."

In Ernie's parody a "mystery celebrity" who is hidden backstage wounds a member of the studio audience and then the panel has to guess the identity of the celebrity who did the wounding.

The first audience member is killed. So, they have the "mystery celebrity" wound another audience member. This time, Ernie comes staggering out with his hand in his shirt like Napoleon and with blood dripping out. The panel now has to question the wounded Ernie to find out who the "mystery celebrity" is.

Right before the panel begins with its questions they reveal to the "audience at home" the identity of the mystery celebrity and their profession.

So here's the question and it has two parts:

1. What is the name of the "mystery celebrity?"
2. What is their profession?

Answer by way of posting a comment. Since all comments are moderated I will put up the first correct answer I get.

No prizes, just infamy on a blog. Big deal.

It's been real.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Comments From A Fan: Lee Munsick

Hi folks. When a fan writes me with some great Ernie observations, I've decided that the blog will be the place to post them. These comments are taken from an insightful email from Lee Munsick who saw the early Ernie shows. Thanks Lee, for the look back! Here we go:

I was born in 1936. From age 8 I was fascinated with radio. When EK started on WPTZ-3 in Philly, my family lived about 25-30 miles due west of NYC well up a hill. I think in 1948 Dad bought our first TV, a Crosley 10". As an old time radio fan and wannabe announcer since age 8, I was fascinated with TV. Especially Arthur Godfrey, whose 1950-ish morning shows were simulcast - so one was watching a radio show take place.

By turning our rabbit ears we could get all the NY stations and all the Philly stations. One morning I found Kovacs, and tended to be late to school for many mornings after. When my older brother came home from college I sat him down in front of the set and we both about fell on the floor laughing.

I have (somewhere) an EEFMS card (Ernie signed them all) which I treasure. I know you are too young to have seen those pre-network shows, and you really missed something. Just about everything he did on the web that took advantage of the abilities of the new medium, he developed in Philly first. Dueling with himself, the tilted table with milk pitcher and glass come to mind. I loved the network stuff as well and all the characters. Unfortunately those first shows were all live and before kinescopes and certainly videotape, so do not exist. I've often wondered if anyone had an early Brush tape recorder and at least took down the audio, but of course Ernie is primarily visual although great writing.

The one network thing I never could figure out was Ernie playing a hyped-up hep used car salesman. He stood next to a little Nash, and as he got more and more excited about what a terrific deal it was, he banged his fist on the fender. The car shot down out of sight and the camera backed up to show a hole in the floor. It didn't go down like on a lift - it just DROPPED! I've never figured how they did that. Some reviewer somewhere revealed that they blew the budget for 3 shows on that one gag.
Thanks again Lee. Folks, feel free to comment on this post, however, please read the rules for commenting by clicking HERE.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


Hi folks. If you're here its either because you visited my Ernie Kovacs Tribute Site, or because you got here through my other blogs GEOMOP or The Jazz Guitar Corner.

Some folks who are regular readers of my Ernie site suggested that I start a blog so they can post comments. I probably will not be posting articles here; I'll just put them on the main site.

However, you can post comments about Ernie here whenever you like, questions, whatever you want that has to do with the great Kovacs. I'll answer them and get involved in the discussion. Occasionally I will start new topic threads to get people talking about Ernie. There is a link in the left column which you can click to learn how to post comments and the rules for doing so.

If you'd like to write an actual article about Ernie and have it posted here go to and contact me. Tell me what you want to write about and if I approve it you can send it to me and then I'll format it and post it here. You will get credit and be contributing to the memory of a television comic legend.

Folks, please limit your comments here to those about Ernie Kovacs or at least to TV or the era.

As mentioned above all comments are moderated and nonsense will be deleted. Abusive comments will not be posted and comments not relating to Ernie Kovacs will be deleted.

Be nice to anyone who posts here. Ernie fans are great people and they all mean well!

Thanks for stopping by. It's been real!