Mike Douglas (1)

Mostly Credited As: Mike Douglas (1)
Sometimes Credited As: Michael Douglas

Birth Name: Michael Delaney Dowd Jr.
Date Of Birth: August 11, 1925 (Age 81)
Country Of Birth: USA
Birth Place: Chicago, Illinois
Date Of Death: August 11, 2006
Cause Of Death: Natural causes (Palm Beach Gardens, Florida)

Mike Douglas (1)

Douglas was born in Chicago, Illinois, and began singing as a choirboy. By his teens he was working as a singer on a Lake Michigan dinner cruise ship. After serving briefly in the United States Navy near the end of World War II, and as a "staff singer" for WMAQ-TV in Chicago, he moved to Los Angeles. There he became a vocalist in the big band of Kay Kyser, with whom he was featured on two notable hits, "Ole Buttermilk Sky" in 1946 and "The Old Lamplighter" the following year. Kyser was responsible for giving him his show business name, and he remained part of Kyser's band until Kyser retired from show business in 1951. In 1950, he provided the singing voice of Prince Charming in Walt Disney's Cinderella. In the 1950s Douglas, living in Burbank, California, tried to keep his singing career going, working as house singer for a nightclub and going on the road to stay busy. He preferred not to switch to rock and roll, which limited his opportunities as big band music was declining in popularity. In the leanest years, he and his wife survived by successfully "flipping" their L.A. homes. He next surfaced in 1961 in Cleveland, where a onetime Chicago colleague hired him for $400 a week as an afternoon television talk-show host at WKYC-TV, then known as KYW-TV. The show rapidly gained popularity, and ultimately, national syndication in August 1963 on five Westinghouse-owned stations. It stopped broadcasting live in 1965 after guest Zsa Zsa Gabor used inappropriate language on the air. As KYW-TV's owner, Group W, successfully had a station swap with NBC overturned by the FCC, the program moved to Philadelphia in June 1965 with KYW itself - though WKYC in Cleveland continued to carry the program for many years afterward. Guests ranged from Truman Capote and Richard Nixon to The Rolling Stones and Herman's Hermits. The show helped introduce entertainers such as Barbra Streisand and Aretha Franklin. Regrettably, footage of Streisand's appearance, like many others of this era, was discarded by WKYC-TV. After the move to Philadelphia, Douglas also attempted to revive his own singing career, logging his lone Top 40 single as a solo artist, "The Men In My Little Girl's Life" in 1966. By 1967, The Mike Douglas Show was broadcasting to 171 markets and 6,000,000 viewers each day, mostly women at home. It earned $10.5 million from advertisers, while its host was paid more than $500,000. In 1967, the program received the first Emmy Award for Individual Achievement in Daytime Television from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. In July 1978, the talk show's home base was transferred to Los Angeles, where it remained until finally going off the air in 1981. A second series, The Mike Douglas Entertainment Hour, ended production in 1982. Douglas became a local cultural icon in Philadelphia, often inviting prominent players from the city's professional sports teams to be guests on his show (he had a particular affinity for the city's pro football team, the Philadelphia Eagles, constantly referring to the team as "Our Eagles", and he could often be seen in attendance at Eagles' home games, especially whenever they appeared on Monday Night Football). He also assisted in mayor Frank Rizzo's campaign against derisive jokes often told by outsiders about the city, acting as chief spokesperson for the "Anti-Defamation Agency" Rizzo had set up for this purpose. Douglas wrote a 1999 memoir titled I'll Be Right Back: Memories of TV's Greatest Talk Show. Forty years after Mike Douglas began his talk show at KYW-TV, his granddaughter Debbie Voinovich Donley designed successor WKYC's new broadcast facility on Lakeside Avenue, completed in 2002. He was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1990, but after surgery he was cancer-free. On his 81st birthday, Douglas died at 5:30 am at a Palm Beach Gardens hospital in North Palm Beach, Florida. He was... In addition to his wife, Mr. Douglas is survived by daughters Kelly and twins Michele and Christine, and several grandchildren and great-grandchildren. According to a family member, a private funeral service will be held Monday at a still to-be-determined location. Though the cause of death has not yet been disclosed, Douglas' wife, Genevieve, tells the Associated Press that he grew dehydrated on a golf course a few weeks ago and has been treated for that off and on since. "He was coming along fine," says the widow. "We never anticipated this to happen." Born Michael Delaney Down in Chicago, Douglas started his career as a teen singer at supper clubs and on radio programs, joined the Navy during World War II, has two hit singles during the 1950s, then ultimately hosted The Mike Douglas Show, which he always maintained was more about music than talk.

TV Appearances

Main cast 
The Mike Douglas Show (1963)As: Himself
The Music Show (1953)As: Himself
Episode Cast Credits 

The Love Boat (1977) 
  Rhino Of The Year/One Last Time/For Love or Money 07x05: (Oct/22/1983) As **Unknown** 

Knots Landing (1979) 
  Svengali 04x04: (Oct/21/1982) As Himself 

The Greatest American Hero (1981) 
  The Two-Hundred-Mile-an-Hour Fastball 02x01: (Nov/04/1981) As Himself 

The Carol Burnett Show (1967) (1967) 
  with Mike Douglas, Bernadette Peters 04x24: (Mar/08/1971) As Himself 
  with Martha Raye, Mike Douglas 02x22: (Mar/17/1969) As Himself 
  with Lynn Redgrave, Mike Douglas 01x15: (Jan/01/1968) As Himself 

The Andy Williams Show (1969) (1969) 
  Jimmy Durante / Linda Ronstadt / Mike Douglas 02x11: (Nov/28/1970) As Himself 

The Honeymooners (1955) 
  The Honeymoon Is Over 10x05: (Nov/01/1969) As Himself 

The Ed Sullivan Show (1948) 
  The Vogues, The Muppets 22x11: (Dec/22/1968) As Himself 
  Tony Bennett, Mike Douglas 21x37: (May/26/1968) As Himself 
  Mike Douglas, Eddie Fisher 21x07: (Oct/22/1967) As Himself 
  The Lettermen, Mike Douglas 19x18: (Jan/16/1966) As Himself 

The Hollywood Palace (1964) 
  Host: Mike Douglas / Donovan / Polly Bergen 06x07: (Nov/09/1968) As Himself, [Guest Hosts]

What's My Line? (US) (1950) 
  EPISODE #774 16x47: (Jul/25/1965) As Guest Panelist 
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He was born Michael Delaney Dowd Jr. on 11 August 1925 in Chicago, Illinois.

Mike is an Actor, Singer, Talk Show Host and a all-around Entertainer.

He began singing professionally at the age of 15 on a cruise ship sailing back and forth between Buffalo, New York and Cleveland, Ohio for his room, board and $35 a 1940.

In 1944 he married “Genevieve Purnell” and they had 3 daughters together which include twins. The twins are “Christine” & “Michelle” and the 3rd daughter was “Kelly Anne”, in 2004 they celebrated their 60th Wedding Anniversary together.

He served in the U.S. Navy for a few years during World War II and after getting his Honorable discharge he began singing for Big Band leader “Kay Kyser and his Orchestra”.

He was the lead singer on 2 of “Kay Kyser’s” biggest hits first in 1946 titled “Ole’ Buttermilk Sky” and in 1947 with “The Old Lamplighter”.

He also appeared in the TV series “Kay Kyser’s Kollege of Musical Knowledge” as “Michael Douglas” in 1949.

In 1950 Mike did the voice over for “Prince Charming” in the “Walt Disney” animated classic “Cinderella”.

Mike remained with Kyser and his Band until Kay decided to retire from the entertainment industry in 1951.

Douglas was next seen in 1953 in the Music Variety series “The Music Show” until it went off the air the following year.

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