On This Day in 1964: Davy Jones Makes His U.S. TV Debut on The Ed Sullivan Show

Thursday, February 9, 2017
On This Day in 1964: Davy Jones Makes His U.S. TV Debut on The Ed Sullivan Show

53 years ago today, the cast of Oliver! performed on The Ed Sullivan Show, giving a young up-and-comer named Davy Jones his first opportunity to shine on American TV.

Oh, right, and the Beatles played, too.

“I watched the Beatles from the side of the stage,” Jones recalled in the book Right Here on Our Stage Tonight! Ed Sullivan’s America. “I saw the girls going crazy, and I said to myself, ‘This is it, I want a piece of that.’”

In an interview posted on the website NewsReviewsInterviews.com, Jones reflected on the experience of being part of such a key episode in television history.

Was "Consider Yourself" the song you guys sang on Sullivan?

No, we sang… [Singing.] “I’d do anything / For you, dear / Anything!” And then Georgia [Brown, who played Nancy] sang “As Long As He Needs Me.” So it was about the cast and the kids and the feel of the show.

In retrospect, it must’ve been pretty remarkable to look back realize just how much of a rock and roll landmark that particular episode ended up being.

Well, for us, the reason we wanted to do The Ed Sullivan Show was because, supposedly, if you went on The Ed Sullivan Show, that made your career. But no one show makes your career. It’s like the kids on American Idol or the contestants on Dancing with the Stars or what have you. It doesn’t mean they’re gonna get the Chita Rivera part in West Side Story just because they danced well. It doesn’t mean they’re gonna get a long career.

It all depends on who you’ve got around you, who’s supporting you, and how grounded you can become in regards to your success. Booker T. Washington said, “Success is not to be measured by the position you reach in life but by the obstacles you overcome to reach that success.” And most careers are fishbowls: Sammy Davis, Jr., Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, they go up, they go down, and they settle for somewhere in the middle of the bowl and end up with a long and successful career. And that’s what I’ve got: the most unused recognizable voice in America!