Newspaper Articles

TV In Review
October 30, 1968
The Bryan Times
Bryan, Ohio

HOLLYWOOD (UPI) - The rise of the Cowsills, the celebrated singing family that will have a half-hour special on NBC-TV Nov. 23, is a show business phenomenon.

But the rise of the attractive young managers, a husband-and-wife team named Leonard and Myrna Stogel, is also pretty remarkable.

Until 1965, Leonard, now 33, was in the import business in New York, specializing in housewares. Myrna has a long family background in the music business - her father being a veteran figure in the industry

Leonard, who resembles his new next door neighbor in Los Angeles, Pierre Salinger, and Myrna, a lovely blonde who looks like a cover girl, now have a publishing company, a record firm and a management business.

Fast Rise

The national success of the Cowsills has taken place in just one year. The Stogels were introduced to them by a producer, saw them rehearse and thought they were impressive.

Soon came an investment of about a quarter of a million dollars to impress the act on the public. This included, in addition to an exceptional promotion campaign, a 23 city tour in 30 days.

On the inside, meanwhile, in the key area of recordings, Stogel was accomplishing a major deal with MGM - at a time when a family act was going against the trend. Soon MGM was enthusiastic too, getting behind the Cowsills.

Of his own business and his whole-scale commitment to the Cowsills, Stogel says:

"We went for broke. If it clicked, we were home. If not, we were in trouble - committing so much time to one act."

Get Commercial Backer

Financially speaking, a tremendous break came when a commercial arrangement with the American Dairy Association was set this year for $1 million.

Like most managers with a hot act in this town, the Stogels hope to expand into television production. And it may well be - depending on the usual factors, such as ratings and other audiences reaction - that the Cowsills' special could result in a series. Some shrewd show business brains feel they have the makings of an institutionalized act.

The Cowsills made their network television debut with CBS-TV's Ed Sullivan a year ago. In February, they were featured in a two-hour special on NBC-TV's "Today" show.

Says Stogel: "They can perform in any facet of the music business. They can do a motor show in Detroit, country-western in Nashville, or hard rock. Or, the older people, all the standards."

And now the target date is Nov. 23 on NBC-TV. It is a big month in the life of the Cowsills - and the Stogels.

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