Twenty-Five Years Ago today

Posted on May 21, 2017 by Dave - Carson Entertainment Group | 1 comment

 It was Twenty-Five Years ago that Johnny Carson would host his last two shows of The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson. Famously in the meeting after the penultimate show on May 21st, 1992, Producers Peter Lassally, Jeff Sotzing and Johnny questioned how they'd be able to top that evenings show. It was just that good. The Penultimate show was the last show with guests, and the last two guests were Robin Williams and Bette Midler, both at the peak of their fame and careers. Bette Midler won an Emmy for Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program with her performance of "One More for My Baby" that night. She also sang a duet with Johnny of "Here's That Rainy Day", Johnny's favorite song,  as well as "You Made Me Watch You" with lyrics that she'd written specifically for the show with piano player Marc Shaiman.

It was truly the end of an era, we would never see another show just like this in our lifetimes and while most of America realized that something special was happening, twenty-five years later we realize we were all watching a part of history in the making. 

If you'd like to relive some of that history, I highly recommend listening to the Carson Podcast with Marc Shaiman (mentioned above) discussing the preparation and performance of the penultimate show with Bette Midler. Here's a link.


And then dust off your copy of The Ultimate Collection and turn on Disc 3. Happy Anniversary! 

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  • Steve

    Hard to believe 25 years have flown by since Johnny signed off…
    And I’ve enjoyed the classics being aired on AntennaTV, but this makes me wonder why they’ve never used any of the final week episodes, and not even in the last several days when it would’ve made sense to. They just have the one from Friday May 15,‘92 on the schedule to air this Monday night, the 22nd itself.
    Bad planning on their part? Or were those last several episodes not made available to them? Just seems like a bit of a lost opportunity, and would’ve been nice.


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