Sunday, April 8, 2018


That was fifty years ago today.  It's quite a powerful song, especially since it was broadcast four days after the death of the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.  But was there anything in that number that you found disturbing?  I really hope not.

But the sponsor did.......

From Wikipedia:
In 1968, NBC-TV invited Clark to host her own special in the U.S., and in doing so she inadvertently made television history. While singing a duet of "On the Path of Glory," an anti-war song that she had composed, with guest Harry Belafonte, she took hold of his arm, to the dismay of a representative from the Chrysler Corporation (the show's sponsor), who feared that the moment would incur racial backlash from Southern viewers. When he insisted that they substitute a different take, with Clark and Belafonte standing well away from each other, Clark and the executive producer of the show—her husband, Wolff—refused, destroyed all other takes of the song, and delivered the finished programme to NBC with the touch intact. The programme aired on 8 April 1968, four days after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, with high ratings and critical acclaim, and became the first instance on American television of physical contact between a black man and a white woman. To commemorate the 40th anniversary of the original telecast, Clark and Wolff appeared at the Paley Center for Media in Manhattan on 22 September 2008, to discuss the broadcast and its impact, following a showing of the programme.

Here are some other references:

I saw mention of this cultural and political event this past Christmas Eve on 'CBS Sunday Morning'.  I wasn't aware of it before that.  (It was probably past my bedtime!)  I wrote this up that night to post it today.  I'm hoping both Ms. Clark and Mr. Belafonte are still with us by this point in time.....


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