Welk, Lawrence (1903-1992) - Research Article from St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture

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For three decades, Saturday night belonged to Lawrence Welk. The bandleader's program debuted on ABC in 1955 and quickly became an even more wholesome alternative to The Ed Sullivan Show. Despite breaking little artistic ground, The Lawrence Welk Show remained on the air for 27 years, making it the longest-running prime-time music program in television history. Welk's program highlighted conservative American values and was decidedly anti-hip, but retained a following into the 1990s, when reruns of the show made it one of PBS's most popular programs.

Though he would one day become the country's second most wealthy performer behind Bob Hope, Welk never forgot his poor beginnings in North Dakota as one of Ludwig and Christina Welk's eight children. His family's pre-Depression struggles were always with him and were partly responsible for his fierce loyalty to his band. His refusal to tip at restaurants could also...

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This section contains 1,235 words
(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Welk, Lawrence (1903-1992) Encyclopedia Article
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