This Day In Music History

It was on this day, November 5th, in 1956 that The Nat King Cole Show debuted on NBC. It was the first program of it’s kind hosted by an African-American. The show originally aired without a sponsor, but NBC agreed to pay for initial production costs; assuming that once the show aired a national sponsor would emerge. None did. National companies did not want to upset their customers who did not want to see a black man on TV shown in anything other than a subservient position. Although NBC agreed to continue footing the bill for the show until a sponsor could be found, Cole┬ápulled the plug on it himself in its second season. Said Cole of the decision, “Madison Avenue is afraid of the dark.”

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