EDDIE GREEN SIGNED FOR NBC HOOKUP
Billed on Broadway and elsewhere as an ace black-face comedian, Eddie Green has been signed for twenty-six weeks to co-feature on a bill with Ernest Whitman and Charles Winnenger. The program will be aired every Sunday from 10 o’clock to 11:00 over WEAF NBC national hookup. Nothing new to EG who worked several seasons very successfully with Rudy V., in fact so successfully he was returned 3 times by popular demand. Leaving the Vallee hour a year ago, he worked through a long term contract engagement at the Apollo, where with his original style of getting laughs won an uncountable following. June 22, 1935, Pittsburgh Courier.
The program for which Eddie was signed was “Uncle Charlie’s Tent Show”. Charles Winninger was “Uncle Charley”. Charles Winnenger (May 26, 1884-January 27, 1969), was a stage and film actor, who began in Vaudeville, and became known for his role in a Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II musical “Show Boat” in 1927, 1932 and in film in 1936. Mr. Winninger would go on to appear in over 20 films.
Each Sunday night Uncle
Charley’s Tent Show parades into your loudspeaker
amid a blare of parade revelry as the performers meander down
the streets of a designated city and come to a
stop in front of the canvas top which houses their act.
Two of those performers were Eddie Green and Ernest Whitman, who were cast as Sam and Jerry, were the only Negro comedians on a network , according to the August 3, 1935 issue of Radio Guide magazine.
Eddie Green, (left), my father, was at this time, a stage and radio performer, who had performed in Vaudeville, and Ernest Whitman (February 21, 1893-August 5, 1954), was a stage and screen actor who had appeared in a number of films, including “Green Pastures”, “, Gone With The Wind”, Stormy Weather and “The Lost Weekend”.
Eddie and Ernest would team up later and record a song together, and Eddie also went on to Hollywood to join the cast of the Showboat Radio program, starring Charles Winnenger as (Cap’n Henry), see above picture.
It was on the “Show Boat” radio program that my father and Hattie McDaniel (first Black female Oscar winner, for her role in the movie “Gone With The Wind”), performed the comedy skit, “Ulysses and the Siren”, which was a poem, written by Samuel Daniel 1562-1619 (who knew?).
Here is a picture of two versions of “Ulysses and the Siren”.
Neither one the these pictures look anything like Eddie and Hattie. Of course, looks don’t really matter when you are broadcasting over the radio, do they? Hattie actually went on to be cast in the 1936 film version of “Showboat”.
These people worked together and I believe they looked out for each other. During the 30s times were hard for everybody, but the entertainment industry was there to provide a bit of relief. Radio was going strong.
Of course, there is always somebody with a different opinion. One was a writer with the Knickerbocker News. I found this article but I have not been able to print it all because the type just won’t act right, but she started out by saying “What that Eddie Green is doing in radio I don’t know. I still can’t see his type of comedy.” Good thing she was not in the majority. Anyhow, they say even bad publicity is good, cause it means people are talking about you, you are causing a stir, people are noticing you. In Eddie’s case it was a good thing. Find what you do best and go out there and get noticed. Have fun and spread the love.
I have a picture of Eddie and Hattie, after she won her Oscar.For those of you who don’t know, Hattie is the fifth person from the left, and Eddie is the second man from the left. My mom is here also, first lady on the left. She told me she could not remember whose house they were in at the time, but it was definitely in Los Angeles. Thanx for stopping by.