File puptcrit/puptcrit.0602, message 141

Date: Tue, 14 Feb 2006 18:43:25 -0800
Subject: Re: [Puptcrit] Venrtiloquist Jerry Layne died Saturday,


Jerry Layne is still very much alive and kicking!

At 06:38 PM 2/14/2006, you wrote:
>That is supposed to be....Rickie Layne, not Jerry Layne.
>At 05:39 PM 2/14/2006, you wrote:
>>From: "Alan Cook" <>
>>Subject: Venrtiloquist Jerry Layne died Saturday,
>>         age 81. Frequent performer on Ed Sullivan/Toast of the Town TV shows
>>Date: Wed, 15 Feb 2006 01:33:50 GMT
>>Since many on puptcrit are interested in That special branch of the Puppe=
>>t Tree called Ventriloquism, this sad news has been submitted.=20
>>-----Original Message-----
>>From: Dennis Alwood
>>Sent: Tue, 14 Feb 2006 16:42:10 -0800
>>To: Alan Cook, Bill Nelson, Bob Isaacson, Burt Dubrow, David Erskine, Dou=
>>g Preis, Glen Rappold, Jay Smith, Jeff Dunham, Jimmy Nelson, Joe Lopez, K=
>>elly Asbury, Ken Groves, Matt Kimbro, Paul Zerdin, Randy Malick, Robert M=
>>cRay, Todd Oliver, Tom Basso, Tom Ladshaw, Valentine Vox
>>Subject: Fw: VELVEL -
>>Rickie Layne, R.I.P.
>>Posted at 3:42
>>PM  Permalink<>4.html#010986>
>>Ventriloquist Rickie Layne, who made 38 appearances on The Ed Sullivan Sh=
>>ow with his wooden friend Velvel, died Saturday at the age of 81. As this=
>>  2002 article in The Jewish
>> Journal<>view.php?id=3D8929>
>> explains, Layne (born Richard Israel Cohen) owed his =
>>stardom to a recommendation from singer Nat King Cole.
>>Some additional details not in the article: The Sunset Strip nightclub me=
>>ntioned in the piece was Ciro's, which was in the building where The Come=
>>dy Store is now housed. Cole's wife, Maria Cole, was playing there and he=
>>r opening act, fresh from the Catskills and Miami hotel circuits, was Ric=
>>kie Layne and Velvel. On October 23, 1955, Nat and Maria did the Sullivan=
>>  show and told Ed about the wonderful Jewish comedian and his dummy with =
>>the Yiddish accent. Sullivan said he ordinarily liked to see an act befor=
>>e he booked it and that he wasn't travelling to the West Coast, where Lay=
>>ne was then working, for some time. Nat said, in effect, "Trust me on thi=
>>s one, Ed. Book the guy. If you don't love him, my next appearance with y=
>>ou is free."
>>Sullivan took the offer and Rickie Layne appeared on the January 1, 1956 =
>>episode of Ed's show, which was called Toast of the Town back then. Layne=
>>'s lips moved more than Edgar Bergen's even but Velvel was hilarious and =
>>the act was immediately booked again, with many appearances to follow. Of=
>>  all the acts that appeared on Sullivan's long-running variety series, on=
>>ly four others -- Wayne & Shuster, Topo Gigio, Jack Carter and Myron Cohe=
>>n -- made more appearances than Rickie Layne and Velvel. He was one of Ed=
>>'s main "go-to" guys when a given episode seemed in need of an extra come=
>>dy spot. (The Jewish Journal article says he made 48 appearances. It was =
>>actually 38.)
>>Alas, Layne's career did not much survive the end of the Sullivan program=
>>  He barely worked after the late seventies. His last public performance =
>>seems to have been in 1997 when there was a show/party at The Improv in H=
>>ollywood to celebrate the 100th birthday of the great Seor Wences. I shou=
>>ld post an article I wrote at the time about that wonderful evening, but =
>>one of the things that made it special was the appearance of Velvel. Not =
>>long after, I was fortunate to attend a private party for Rickie Layne th=
>>at celebrated his life and career, and to hear him tell wonderful tales o=
>>f his years playing the Borscht Circuit. It was amazing how many hotel an=
>>d showroom owners couldn't quite grasp the fact that the insults (and dem=
>>ands for better pay) that came out of Velvel's mouth actually were the vi=
>>ews of Mr. Layne.
>>Oddly enough, the other day in the hospital, I watched an Ed Sullivan spe=
>>cial on that in-house comedy TV channel I mentioned and saw a few seconds=
>>  of Velvel in great form. I wish someone would assemble a special or a DV=
>>D of those acts presented in full. With so many people like this leaving =
>>us, those clips are all we have to remember the great art form represente=
>>d by variety performers like Rickie Layne. And, oh yeah -- Velvel, too.
>>List address:
>>Admin interface:
>Steve Axtell
>Axtell Expressions, Inc.
><>Amazing Puppet Characters Web Site
>New show "<>AxTelevision" on DVD
>International <>Performer's Directory
>The original content of this email or
>attachments is =A9 Axtell Expressions, Inc.
>List address:
>Admin interface:

Steve Axtell
Axtell Expressions, Inc.
<>Amazing Puppet Characters Web Site
New show "<>AxTelevision" on DVD
International <>Performer's Directory
The original content of this email or attachments is =A9 Axtell Expressions, Inc.

List address:
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