The Tennessee Ernie Ford Show (1956–1961)
22 Sep. 1960George Gobel
In the final season's opener, Ernie and guest George Goebel mention the upcoming presidential debates between Vice President Nixon and Senator Kennedy, and imagine, how a future match up might degenerate into an overly commercial,semi-entertainment oriented show.
27 Oct. 1960Tab Hunter, Cliff Arquette and Jack Bailey
10 Nov. 1960Joe Flynn, Major Joseph Walker USAF and Major Robert White USAF
24 Nov. 1960Merle Travis and Molly Bee
Ernie and The Top Twenty perform "Party Song", then Ernie and guest Merle Travis do a duet of "Nine Pound Hammer". Merle sings "Smoke, Smoke, Smoke That Cigarette". Guest Molly Bee joins them and performs "Fallin'" and "He Taught Me How To Yodel". The trio then sings "Dim Lights, Thick Smoke And Loud, Loud Music". Wrapping up the Thanksgiving episode, the entire cast joins Ernie on "Bless This House".
8 Dec. 1960Jimmie Rodgers and Margarethe Vertelson
5 Jan. 1961Ernie and the Top Twenty
In a rare programme without a guest, Ernie and the Top Twenty perform songs about American heroes, real and legendary. Anoriginal number about Ben Franklin has the girls in period costume, and the show ends with a rousing salute to the defenders of the Alamo.
2 Feb. 1961Brenda Lee
Ernie starts the show by trying to play a tuba, in the skit portion, he's a soda jerk. Brenda Lee comes into his shop and orders a "double". While she sings "One For my Baby" as Ernie keeps adding more and more to a sundae until it's a huge, awful mess of ice cream, pineapples, whipped cream and syrup, but her boyfriend takes her away before she even tastes it.
30 Mar. 1961On Location at Sea - Aboard the U.S.S. Aircraft Carrier Yorktown
Aboard the aircraft carrier USS Yorktown, Ernie and company perform for the sailors, with song and dance numbers and a skit where hayseed Ernie is coaxed into signing up for naval service, and given a plush cabin, a fruit basket and comely WAVES by the ship's Captain when he arrives.
13 Apr. 1961The Everly Brothers
Ford's young guests are the Everly Brothers, whose rock n' roll/ rhythm and blues style brings the tempo up a little faster than usual for the show. Ernie joins them on several numbers, and at one point picks a few bars on the guitar while the brothers strum the along on the same instrument.
20 Apr. 1961Roberta Sherwood
After the opening number, Ernie shows off what an apparent bountiful feast is really made of, wooden cake, plaster sandwiches, rubber vegetables, etc. as well as smudge pots to give the illusion of steam. He joins Roberta at a grand piano to do a medley of southern-themed songs.
18 May 1961Andy Devine
Taking the cameras backstage, Ernie runs into a mob from Dean Martin's spectacular and Wagon Train blocking the coffee vending machine, and gets caught in an apple dispenser.Andy Devine tries everything down to begging and blubbering a sad song to get Ernie to buy a broken down horse named Lightning.
1 Jun. 1961Tab Hunter
After a musical salute to the month of June, Ernie and Tab Hunter imagine what it would be like if they were young unknown actors waiting for a big break in a run down flat. When a call comes in for Tab, they have to improvise a decent wardrobe for him to go in.
15 Jun. 1961Hoagy Carmichael
In a show without any skits, Ernie and guest Hoagy Carmichael trade songs at a piano, and the Top Twenty sing some numbers too, most all of which come from Hoagy's sizable songbook.
22 Jun. 1961Joe Flynn, Anita Bryant and the United States Marine Corps Drill Team
29 Jun. 1961Ernie and the Top Twenty
In the final episode of the series, Ernie has no special guest, he shows the large pile of scripts from the five years run of the show, then retells a few selected jokes. He then introduces and reminisces with members of "The Top Top Twenty". Most of the rest of the program is devoted to several of Ernie's favorite hymns, including "The Rugged Cross".
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