Hidden Gems | Vintage

12 Famous Performances On The Ed Sullivan Show That We'll Never Forget

The Ed Sullivan Show, is remembered as one of the most iconic television variety shows, featuring over 10,000 performers in its 23-year run. With so many artists riddled with talent, it's hard to remember everyone who once took the stage.

With that in mind, here are 12 musicians we forgot were on The Ed Sullivan Show:

1. Barbara Streisand

The renown Broadway star, movie star, and singing sensation, Barbra Streisand first appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1962.

Streisand would make a total of five appearances on the variety show and win the “Best Female Singer of the Year Award” in 1970 on a special “Sullivan” awards show.

2. Buddy Holly

Fresh off the release of their debut album, Buddy Holly & His Crickets would make their first appearance in 1957, with a followup the year later.

Sadly, Holly's career was short lived as the rising star died in a plane crash at the age of 22. Musician Don McLean would later sing Holly's death was “The Day the Music Died” in his song “American Pie.”

3. Elvis Presley

With immense popularity, the King of Rock was a beloved musician with millions of fans, and the views he received on The Ed Sullivan Show proved it. 60 million viewers tuned in to Presley's first appearance on the variety show, prompting him to return to two more times.

With 18 number one hits and 38 in the top 10, the crooner passed away at the age of 42 from a heart attack.

4. Judy Garland

The great Judy Garland appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1963 when the variety show host took his audience to London. She would also take the stage in 1965 back in the U.S.

Unfortunately the troubled singer would pass away from a drug overdose at 47-years-old.

5. Liza Minnelli

An Ed Sullivan favourite, Liza Minnelli would dazzle on the show's stage nearly a dozen times. Along with a successful singing career, Minnelli would also appear in several movies and Broadway musicals. So far in her career, Minnelli has garnered three Tony Awards, a Grammy Award, an Emmy Award, and two Golden Globe Awards.

6. Ike and Tina Turner

Prior to Ike and Tina Turner's divorce, the couple formed The Ike and Tina Turner Revue. The duo would make an appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1970, giving an enticing performance. Unfortunately Ike and Tina Turner ended their relationship of eight years, thus breaking up the band. Tina would continue on with a successful career, while Ike passed away in 2007 from a drug overdose.

7.  Julie Andrews

Before starring in the Academy Award winning movie, The Sound of Music, Andrews would first take the stage on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1961. She used her appearance to promote Broadway musicals, which many of the variety show's audience had never seen before. Andrews would later appear in other critically acclaimed films, including Marry Poppins, Victor/Victoria, and Thoroughly Modern Millie, winning numerous awards.

8. Jackson 5

The band which skyrocketed Michael Jackson into fame, the Jackson 5 consisted of five brothers who carried Motown into the 1960s. They made their first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1969 and would return the following year. The Jackson 5 would stay active for 25 years before officially disbanding. They would later reunite in 2012, but without their lead star. Michael had devastatingly met his demise in 2009 following a heart attack.

9. Sonny and Cher

The legendary duo of Sonny Bono and Cher first appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1965. The married couple sang their number one hit, I Got You Babe followed by two other songs. They would go on to have son Chaz Bono, but sadly divorced in 1975, ending their musical partnership. Bono would later go on to have a successful political career before passing away at the age of 62 in a skiing accident. Cher continued to have a triumphant music career, and still performs in concerts today.

10. Stevie Wonder

Motown singer Stevie Wonder never let his blindness stop him from becoming an inspirational artist. He would first appear on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964 at the young age of 13. He would return to the stage four years later, dazzling the crowd yet again. At 67-years-old Wonder is still gracing the world with his musical talents. He's won 25 Grammy Awards and has sold over 100 million records.

11. Neil Diamond

Pop icon, Neil Diamond would make his debut on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1969 in front of a swooning crowd. While previously writing songs for Elvis Presley, The Monkees, and Cliff Richard, his tunes have become so popular, famous bands such as Coldplay, Dave Matthews and the cast of Glee have covered his work.

12. The Beatles

Probably one of The Ed Sullivan Show's most famous guests, The Beatles had a record-breaking 73 million viewers tune in for their appearance on the variety show. With "Beatlemania" rampant across the world, the British band would make their first appearance in 1964, and would earn a grand total of $10,000 for each of their three shows. Of course, they would receive top billing. The Beatles would stay together for ten years before they inevitable breakup. Nearly 50 years later, The Beatles are still remembered as one of the greatest musical acts of all time.

Do you remember watching The Ed Sullivan Show?

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