Weekly News via Email
   Set as homepage | Add to favorites | Customer Service | Subscribe Now | Place an Ad | Contact Us | Sitemap Friday, 11.21.2014
Classifieds
News Archive
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
 1  2  3  4
 5  6  7  8  9  10  11
 12  13  14  15  16  17  18
 19  20  21  22  23  24  25
 26  27  28  29  30  31
Online Extras
Site Services
Around Bend
Outdoor Fun
Travel Info
Shop Local




Members Of



Poll: Today's Live Poll
Email to a friend | Print this | PDF version | Comments (0 posted) 
  Blogger |   del.icio.us |   digg |   newsvine

Aug 17,2007
Contemporary Collectibles: The heyday of bickering musical duos
by Linda Rosenkrantz

What could be more '70s than a set of paper dolls displaying Sonny & Cher in matching bell-bottoms or Donny & Marie wearing identical toothy grins? It was the heyday of bickering musical duos on TV, and this pair of pairs, one of them husband and wife, the other a pair of siblings, were the leaders of the pack.

The "Sonny & Cher Hour" was the first to debut, in 1971, becoming a huge hit, drawing an estimated 20 million prime-time viewers each week, putting them into the Top 10. Cher soon established herself as a superstar, with her wry quips, nasty put-downs of her husband, and glamorized hippie wardrobe. Cherilyn LaPiere had married record producer Salvatore Bono when she was 18. Sonny had been selling songs to recording artists while still in his teens, and was also a favored background vocalist on some of Phil Spector's big hits. Cher was occasionally backing up the Ronettes, which is how they met.

They didn't get very far under the name Caesar and Cleo, but soon after they morphed into Sonny & Cher they produced such megahits as "I Got You Babe" - their first single, released in 1965 - and "The Beat Goes On." Their joint career was faltering, however, when a shot at a youth-oriented summer replacement series led to their own successful CBS variety show which became television's top-rated variety series. The main draws were Cher's acerbic wit and the increasingly more outrageous costumes designed for her by Bob Mackie.

Of collector interest, the Mego Co. put out a line of Sonny & Cher dolls in 1976 - fully jointed replicas accurate down to Cher's long black hair and exaggerated eyelashes. These are now worth at up to $100. Other dolls followed (with Mackie-designed wardrobe), plus a backstage dressing room playset, a Cher travel trunk, a large Sonny & Cher Theatre in the Round ($175-200), and a now rare, red Sonny & Cher Chevy Roadster. Also: sets of far-out Cher jewelry, and a sought after Cher's Sing-Along Phono with a working microphone.

"Donny & Marie" was launched in 1976, with the husband and wife repartee replaced by the sibling put-downs of the young Osmonds. The show also brought in other family members, the Osmond Brothers vocal group (Donny had joined them at the age of 6 after previously singing "You Are My Sunshine" on the Andy Williams show at 4, while Marie debuted at the age of 3, sitting on Williams' lap), plus such other ensembles as The Ice Vanities and The Disco Dozen. Whereas the Bono show was sassy, the Osmonds were squeaky-clean ("a little bit country, a little bit rock and roll"). During the first season, the target audience was definitely teenyboppers, though they later aimed for a more adult demographic, with Marie now stylishly dressed by Cher's own Bob Mackie.

Most of the Donny & Marie merchandising was produced under the copyright of the family firm, Osbro Productions. Vinyl dolls by Mattel were made in the images of Donny, Marie and brother Jimmy, as were puppets of the show's two stars. There were also paper dolls and coloring books from Whitman Publishing, and a book, "The Top Secret Project" by Laura French. And for any child who wanted to produce their own Osmond show, there was a "Donny & Marie Osmond T.V. Show" set, consisting of a stage, piano, guitar, and lights. Other opportunities for collectors: a battery-powered toothbrush; autographs albums and diaries; a board game; a camera and photo album set; a Country and Rock Rhythm Set and Country and Rock Band; a clothing line sponsored by Osmond mom Olive; costumes; jigsaw puzzles; guitars; a vinyl lunch box by Aladdin; various Marie make-up and jewelry sets; portable AM radios and record players - and much more.

Linda Rosenkrantz has edited Auction magazine and authored 15 books, including "The Baby Name Bible" (St. Martin's Press; www.babynamebible.com). She cannot answer letters personally.

© Copley News Service
1792 times read

Related news

Contemporary Collectibles: Collectors remember Mork from Ork by Linda_Rosenkrantz posted on Nov 30,2007

Contemporary Collectibles: Half a doll is better than some by Linda_Rosenkrantz posted on Jan 18,2008


Contemporary Collectibles: Frozen Charlottes charm collectors by Linda_Rosenkrantz posted on Oct 05,2007

Did you enjoy this article? Rating: 5.00Rating: 5.00Rating: 5.00Rating: 5.00Rating: 5.00 (total 9 votes)

Market Information
Breaking News
Most Popular
Most Commented
Featured Columnist
Horoscope Guide
Aquarius Aquarius Libra Libra
Aries Aries Pisces Pisces
Cancer Cancer Sagittarius Sagittarius
Capricorn Capricorn Scorpio Scorpio
Gemini Gemini Taurus Taurus
Leo Leo Virgo Virgo
Local Attractions
Bend Visitors & Convention Bureau
Bend Visitors & Convention Bureau

Mt. Bachelor Resort
Mt. Bachelor Resort

Les Schwab Ampitheater
Les Schwab Ampitheater

Deschutes County Fairgrounds
Deschutes County
Fairgrounds

Tower Theatre
Tower Theatre

The High Desert Museum

Advertisements



Deschutes County

Google  
  Web    BendWeekly.com
© 2006 Bend Weekly News
A .Com Endeavors, Inc. Company.
All Rights Reserved. Terms under
which this service is provided to you.
Please read our Privacy Policy. Contact us.
Bend Weekly News & Event Guide Online
   Save the Net
Advertisement
External sites open in new window,
not endorsed by BendWeekly.com
Subscribe in NewsGator Online
Add to Google Add to MSN Add to My AOL
What are RSS headlines?