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Coca-Cola Presents...

The Bill Cosby
Radio Program!

The Cosby Show: Old-Time Radio with 40 Zing!

NEW YORK - "Charity begins at home. Lend me a dime, Mom!" Such is the thought for the day offered by Bill Cosby on his newly-concocted syndicated radio program, known, interestingly enough, as "The Bill Cosby Radio Program."

The show, a daily five-minute segment which is broadcast several times per week, was the brainchild of Frank Buxton, a one-man encyclopedia on old-time radio, and was eventually accepted by Cosby. Thus Cosby of TV fame, of comedy record fame, and lately, of singing fame, set out to conquer a new vista, radio. Not only as the main performer, but as the chief writer, as well.

The result of the Buxton brainstorm and the Cosby comedy is what Buxton describes as "old-time radio at its best." A host of different characters and different situations make their appearance at one time or another during the week, including such unforgettable personalities as "The Brown Hornet," "Captain Oh-Wow," selected sports heroes and interviews with some of the more colorful members of the animal kingdom. And sparking each segment is the drawling Cosby humor, which has been responsible for the artists' current position as one of the most outstanding record-sellers in the disk business. Segments such as "The Brown Hornet" are, to quote Buxton once again, "exciting, spine-tingling adventures where nothing ever happens."

But something does happen. Perhaps not in the form of story line, but in the form of quick moving, easy to listen to radio - the kind of pace that Top 40 programmers have found highly successful in the showcasing of teen music. Only in this case it's not music (with the exception of the well-known singing Coca-Cola commercials, done up by some of the biggest names in the record business), it's comedy. Yet at the same time, it's still comedy aimed at a Top 40 audience.

The Cosby radio show is the type of package that fits beautifully into Top 40 programming slots without undermining or detracting from the tight, rapid-fire spirit of that type of format. Quite the contrary. Comedy of that sort can enhance and round out the rocking sounds and the wailing deejays. And of course, there's always the possibility that the Cosby show can catch on to the point of "household word-ness," that status achieved at one time by Bob & Ray, "Sorry about that, Chief!" and Bert & Harry Piels. Should that much desired state be attained, the benefit to the station carrying the program in a particular market would, of course, be immeasurable.

Be it dubbed The Bill Cosby Radio Show or New Old-Time Radio, the package should be of major interest to a great many rock programmers, and may well prove to be one of the most exciting Cosby projects of 1968.

Reprinted from a January 27, 1968 article in Cash Box.

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