Monday, November 23, 2009

1966 Summertime Entertainment

Just like the summer of 1965 at Disneyland, that of 1966 also featured abundant live musical entertainment throughout the night. The summer season of 1966 was notable in other ways: the dedication of "It's a Small World" (the nomenclature then in use) on May 30 set off the summer season. The first new "land" since Disneyland's opening debuted with the dedication of New Orleans Square on July 24, 1966. The Primeval World Diorama also debuted in the summer. Following Labor Day weekend, most of the original Tomorrowland, including the 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea Exhibit, Rocket to the Moon, The Art Corner, and the Flying Saucers, closed down to make way for a bigger and better future the next summer.

There were changes behind the scenes, too. Disneyland pioneers Tommy Walker and Ed Ettinger left the Park's employ during the summer to seek employment elsewhere. Tommy spearheaded Disneyland's entertainment events and Ed had been director of Marketing. Donald Novis, an original star of the Golden Horseshoe Revue, and Johnny St. Cyr, a legendary Dixieland player who performed with Disneyland's Young Men from New Orleans, both passed away during the summer. The summer of 1966 was also the final summer of Walt Disney's lifetime.

The summer's musical entertainment was previewed by the Big Band Holiday of the Memorial Day weekend, May 28 and 29. Unlike the 1965, the summer of 1966 featured few big bands, concentrating more on folk, country, and rock bands. This was the only big band event of the summer. The promotion featured Xavier Cugat making his first appearance at Disneyland (together with Charo); the fifth appearance of Harry James, featuring drummer Louie Bellson and vocalist Ernie Andrews; Anita O'Day; and the first Disneyland appearance of Nelson Riddle. Some of Disneyland's own talent also performed at the event: The Elliott Brothers Orchestra, Tina and the Mustangs, the Young Men from New Orleans, and the Royal Tahitian Dancers.

Just like in 1965, each Monday Disneyland featured a folk Hootenanny, and each Tuesday a Humdinger geared toward the youth audience. Country Music Jubilee was held each Wednesday, and Thursday was reserved for Guest Band Nite, which spotlighted the band that generally performed Tuesday through Saturday of that week. In addition to the guest talent, Disneyland had its regular talent scattered throughout the Park each day. On Friday and Saturday nights, the Firehouse Five + 2 joined the roster (performing at the French Market when New Orleans Square opened), with the Glenn Kennedy Orchestra appearing on Sunday nights. New Orleans Square brought new entertainment to Disneyland, including the Royal Street Bachelors and tap dancers Gene and Eddie leading the Delta Ramblers Dixieland Band.

June 18, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM

June 19, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 12 AM

June 20, 1966 (Monday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: The Womenfolk; David Troy; Dapper Dans; Bud and Len; Clara Ward Singers

June 21, 1966 (Tuesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: Vic Dana, The Blossoms, H. B. Barnum; Tina Mason; The Mustangs; Humdinger Dancers
The Association

June 22, 1966 (Wednesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Country Music Jubilee: Roy Acuff; The Dillards; Kathy Taylor; Dorsey Burnett Band
The Association

June 23, 1966 (Thursday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Guest Band Nite: The Association

June 24, 1966 (Friday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Association

June 25, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Association

June 26, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 12 AM

June 27, 1966 (Monday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: Greenwood County Singers; Kathy Taylor; Tim Morgan; Ward Singers

June 28, 1966 (Tuesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: Jackie DeShannon; Olympics; Bantams; Humdinger Dancers
Jim Doval and the Gauchos

June 29, 1966 (Wednesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
County Music Jubilee: Roy Clark; Ramblers; Billy Armstrong
Jim Doval and the Gauchos

June 30, 1966 (Thursday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Guest Band Nite: Jim Doval and the Gauchos

July 1, 1966 (Friday)
9 AM - 1 AM
Jim Doval and the Gauchos

July 2, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM
Jim Doval and the Gauchos

July 3, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 1 AM
Jim Doval and the Gauchos

July 4, 1966 (Monday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: The Dillards; Steve Gillette; Darleen Carr; Candy Company; Dapper Dans; Bud and Len; Clara Ward Singers

July 5, 1966 (Tuesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: Joey Paige; Ketty Lester; New Classic Singers; The Mustangs; Humdinger Dancers
The Spats

July 6, 1966 (Wednesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Country Music Jubilee: George Hamilton IV; Sue Thompson
The Spats

July 7, 1966 (Thursday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Guest Band Nite: The Spats

July 8, 1966 (Friday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Spats

July 9, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Spats

July 10, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 12 AM

July 11, 1966 (Monday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: The Pair Extraordinaire; The Aquamen; David Troy; Jim and Jean; Dapper Dans; Bud and Len; Clara Ward Singers

July 12, 1966 (Tuesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: Leslie Gore; The Rivingtons; The Mustangs; Humdinger Dancers; Dobie Gray
The Sunrays

July 13, 1966 (Wednesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Country Music Jubilee: Minnie Pearl
The Sunrays

July 14, 1966 (Thursday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Guest Band Nite: The Sunrays

July 15, 1966 (Friday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Sunrays

July 16, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Sunrays

July 17, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 12 AM

July 18, 1966 (Monday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: Joe and Eddie; Irish Rovers; Mickey Elley; The Regulars; Clara Ward Singers

July 19, 1966 (Tuesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: April and Nino; Jackie Lee; Gloria Jones; The Mustangs; Humdinger Dancers
The Regents

July 20, 1966 (Wednesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Country Music Jubilee: Hank Thompson; Wanda Jackson
The Regents

July 21, 1966 (Thursday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Guest Band Nite: The Regents

July 22, 1966 (Friday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Regents

July 23, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Regents

July 24, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 12 AM

July 25, 1966 (Monday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: Hoyt Axton; Goose Creek Symphonic Band & Stage Door Company; The Regulars

July 26, 1966 (Tuesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: Brenda Holloway; Ray Peterson; The Steiner Bros.; The Mustangs; Humdinger Dancers; Dobie Gray
The Sounds of Soul

July 27, 1966 (Wednesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Country Music Jubilee: Canadian Sweethearts; Glen Campbell
The Sounds of Soul

July 28, 1966 (Thursday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Guest Band Nite: The Sounds of Soul

July 29, 1966 (Friday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Sounds of Soul

July 30, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Sounds of Soul

July 31, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 12 AM

August 1, 1966 (Monday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: The New Society; Walt Conley; The Uncalled Four

August 2, 1966 (Tuesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: Mel Carter; The Standells; Carolyn Daye

August 3, 1966 (Wednesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Country Music Jubilee: Freddie Hart and His Band; Mary Taylor; Jerry Naylor

August 4, 1966 (Thursday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Guest Band Nite: The Magnificent VII

August 5, 1966 (Friday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Magnificent VII

August 6, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Magnificent VII

August 7, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 12 AM

August 8, 1966 (Monday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: Irish Rovers; David Troy; Darleen Carr; Dixson Bowles and the Dan Blocker Singers

August 9, 1966 (Tuesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: The Hondells; Tina Mason

August 10, 1966 (Wednesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Country Music Jubilee: Tex Williams; Le Garde Twins; Cathie Taylor

August 11, 1966 (Thursday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Guest Band Nite: Knickerbockers

August 12, 1966 (Friday)
9 AM - 1 AM
Knickerbockers

August 13, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM
Knickerbockers

August 14, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 12 AM

August 15, 1966 (Monday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: The Dillards; The New Folk Trio; Tim Morgon; Steve Gillette; Disneyland Regulars

August 16, 1966 (Tuesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: Joey Paige; Gloria Jones; The Rivingtons
The Regents

August 17, 1966 (Wednesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Country Music Jubilee: Jimmy Wakely; Joe & Rose Lee Maphis
The Regents

August 18, 1966 (Thursday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Guest Band Nite: The Regents

August 19, 1966 (Friday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Regents

August 20, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Regents

August 21, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 12 AM

August 22, 1966 (Monday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: The Back Porch Majority; Aquamen; Fred Thompson; Disneyland Regulars

August 23, 1966 (Tuesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: Bobby Sherman; The Two People; The Bantams
The Premiers

August 24, 1966 (Wednesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Country Music Jubilee: The Geezinslaw Brothers; Bob Morris; Faye Hardin
The Premiers

August 25, 1966 (Thursday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Guest Band Nite: The Premiers

August 26, 1966 (Friday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Premiers

August 27, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Premiers

August 28, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 12 AM

August 29, 1966 (Monday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: The Greenwood Singers; Casey Anderson; Goose Creek Symphonic Band and Storm Door Company; Disneyland Regulars

August 30, 1966 (Tuesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: Martha and the Vandellas; The Mustangs; Humdinger Dancers
The Spats

August 31, 1966 (Wednesday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Country Music Jubilee: Rex Allen Show; Jimmy Wallis
The Spats

September 1, 1966 (Thursday)
9 AM - 12 AM
Guest Band Nite: The Spats

September 2, 1966 (Friday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Spats

September 3, 1966 (Saturday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Spats

September 4, 1966 (Sunday)
9 AM - 1 AM
The Spats; Nellie Lutcher

September 5, 1966 (Monday)
10 AM - 12 AM
Hootenanny: Disneyland Regulars

September 6, 1966 (Tuesday)
10 AM - 12 AM
Humdinger: Jackie & Gayle; Curtis Brothers; The Mustangs; Humdinger Dancers

September 7, 1966 (Wednesday)
10 AM - 12 AM
Country Music Jubilee: Merle Haggard; The Dillards; Bonnie Owens; Jimmy Wallis

Disneyland's nighttime entertainment continued daily through the weekend. The last Date Nite of the season on Saturday, September 17 featured what must have been a truly odd event at Disneyland: the headlining of Mrs. Miller. The popular 58-year-old performer was noted for her inability to carry a tune. (One newspaper report indicated she would be performing "in the Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea exhibit," which had already permanently closed. It's far more likely she performed on the stage out front, but the suggestion of an out-of-tune concert in the closed exhibit provokes a rather odd mental picture.) Also performing on "Mrs. Miller Night" were The Youngfolk; H. B. Barnum; 6-year-old Gary Ferguson (they were, apparently, running on novelty); The Regents; Firehouse Five + 2; Nellie Lutcher; and Tina Mason and the Mustangs.

Just as in 1965, the annual Dixieland at Disneyland event capped the summer's musical program. The October 1, 1966 special ticket event featured Louis Armstrong (as usual), Bob Crosby and the Bobcats, Turk Murphy's San Francisco Band, Firehouse Five + 2, Young Men from New Orleans, Southern California Hot Jazz Society Marching Band, Nellie Lutcher Trio, and the Royal Street Bachelors. Walt flew in Doc Souchon's Milneburg's All Stars direct from New Orleans on his private plane for the event. Doc Souchon was well-regarded for both his musical ability and his work on preserving jazz traditions in mid-twentieth century New Orleans. After a brief group torchlight ramble down Main Street, the groups split up to perform in locations throughout the Park. Reviews lamented that guests could see all the talent in previous years, as they would each perform short sets on rafts in the Rivers of America, before a rousing finale on the Mark Twain. There was too much to see and overcrowding to see some artists (such as Louis Armstrong and Firehouse Five + 2).

Of course, this wasn't the last year Disneyland featured such an extensive musical line-up. After all, you can't attract people to Disneyland just with the debut of Carousel of Progress, Adventure Thru Inner Space, a new Circle-Vision, the PeopleMover, the Rocket Jets, and Flight to the Moon, right? Surely none of my blog readers would be content to just experience those attractions for the first time...

5 comments:

Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

Another brilliant post from the Disneyland Nomenclature Master himself... I love all the details and the way you wrap it all up in a tidy blog post - there sure is a lot of detail in here.

* Hootenanny Monday's
* Humdinger Tuesday's
* Country Music Jubilee Wednesday's
* Guest Band Nite Thursday's
* And Weekends FILLED with quality entertainment.

What did we get this summer? "What will you celebrate" Apparently you wont celebrate a vast variety of outside entertainment!!!!

p.s. 1966 - "The final summer of Walt Disney's lifetime" :-(

Major Pepperidge said...

You said that "I'ts a Small World" was the nomenclature "then in use". What do they use now??

I'm trying to imagine how hot Charo must have looked back in 1966!

Progressland said...

Major: "it's a small world"(quotation marks, all lowercase) is the current nomenclature. This is also how it is in 1966 newspaper advertisements, but not in the stories about its opening. For most of its history it was rendered as "It's a Small World" (quotation marks, initial caps). I have also seen it as "It's A Small World", It's A Small World, and, of course, Small World. For over a year in the 1970s, guidebooks listed as It's A Small World" (yes, missing the first quotation mark!...or is that wrongly adding the second?).

At any rate, the attraction is now "it's a small world". I believe the song, however, is officially It's a Small World (After All).

Major Pepperidge said...

It would be amazing to be able to somehow experience all of those classic attractions for the first time; can you please arrange that?

Anonymous said...

Dave Bartle said:
I was having a hard time remembering if it was '65 or '66, but this confirms it, 1966 Memorial weekend. I believe Harry James was playing at the Carnation Plaza on a stage there. We were sitting, listening, and having a meal. Harry James said they were going to take a break and be back in a few,then he walked directly at our table, stop at my dad and said "it's been a long time Harry". My dad had played trumpet also, but never talked much about it and had actually played with Harry James. That was an exciting day for a little 7th grader like me. I love your research and the stories. Thanks