Saturday, February 14, 2009
Friday, February 13, 2009
CBC's Tony Thomas conducted a wealth of interviews in the late sixties and early seventies for his radio program. I even found a CD way back when that was pressed by some makeshift company in the States that put out Thomas' great interview with Jack Benny. Here is just under an hour with George Burns from June, 1970, an insightful and often serious discussion about George Burns, his philosophy on life, comedy and music today. Listen to the whole thing here.
More about Tony Thomas courtesy the internet:
Tony Thomas spent much of his life preserving Hollywood history through his 30-odd books, 50-plus record albums, and television documentaries. His interest in Hollywood dated back to the beginning of his career when the England-born Thomas -- who emigrated to Canada at age 18 -- served as an announcer for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. The 21-year-old worked his way up in the company to become a writer and producer for the CBC radio network. Thomas specialized in programs about cinema and Hollywood. He moved to Tinseltown in 1966 to become a distinguished film historian who specialized in movie music. Thomas was very active in movements recognizing movie scores as legitimate orchestral music and co-founded the Society for the Preservation of Film Music, serving on its advisory board for many years. His books include Music for the Movies (1973) (considered a seminal work in the serious appraisal of film scores), The Films of 20th Century Fox, and The Busby Berkeley Book. As a documentary filmmaker, Thomas contributed to a number of biographies in Citadel's "Films of" series, including those of Jimmy Stewart, Marlon Brando, and Gene Kelly. In conjunction with the release of MGM's compilation film That's Dancing, Thomas released a complimentary book with the same title. In regard to recording, Thomas produced compilation albums of great scorists as well as individual albums featuring soundtracks composed by such greats as Erich Wolfgang Korngold and Alfred Newman. Thomas has written and produced many PBS-aired documentaries, including Hollywood and the American Image, The West That Never Was, Film Score: The Music of the Movies, and Michael Feinstein: Sing a Song Hollywood, for the American Movie Classics Channel in the mid-'90s. Tony Thomas died from complications of pneumonia in Burbank, CA, at the age of 69