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This being a Sunday in the USA between 1948 and 1971, the Ed Sullivan Show was broadcast on CBS. I don’t have to tell you that back in 1964, live appearances on this show had been a big part of The Beatles’ (successful) plan to conquer America. They also appeared on Sullivan in 1965, in a “live” appearance that was taped in August and broadcast in September.

By 1966 their clout was such that they could send promotional films instead of being actually physically present for the show. Tonight Ed showed the promos for “Paperback Writer” and “Rain” made back on May 19. Also appearing on the show were Robert Goulet, Jack Benny, Charlotte Rae (the future Mrs. Garrett), and a young comedian named Richard Pryor. According to TV.com, Richard did a “routine about slavery throughout history.” One wonders how that went over with Ed’s audience.

It’s hard to know because no video seems to exist, but it can’t have been too bad, as Richard was invited back on November 27, 1966:


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