The Clicquot Club Eskimos

The Clicquot Club Eskimos

The Clicquot Club Eskimos

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Description:
The Clicquot Club Eskimos was a popular musical variety radio show, first heard in 1923, featuring a banjo orchestra directed by Harry Reser. A popular ginger ale, Clicquot Club was Canada Dry's main rival. Clicquot (pronounced "klee-ko") was the name of the Eskimo boy mascot depicted in advertisements and on the product.

In the early 1920s Reser's banjo performances on WEAF/New York were sometimes described by newspaper columnists as "sparkling," and this prompted WEAF production manager George Podeyn to approach the Clicquot company about sponsoring Reser's band. The policy of the U.S. Department of Commerce (which regulated radio broadcasting at that time), was that advertising on radio broadcasts was not allowed.

However, the Eskimo theme was carried through whenever possible. Band members wore Eskimo outfits when performing before a studio audience, and barking dogs were a component of Harry Reser's opening theme tune, Clicquot. Sheet music illustrations depicted the band performing in frigid far North settings.

The radio program aired on WEAF from 1923 to 1926, graduating in 1926 to NBC, where it was heard as a half-hour show on Thursday at 10pm, then Thursday at 9pm (1927-28), Tuesday at 10pm (1928-30) and Fridays at 9pm (1930-33). A typical show opening went like this:
Announcer: Look out for the falling snow, for it’s all mixed up with a lot of ginger, sparkle, and pep, barking dogs and jingling bells, and there we have a crew of smiling Eskimos,......
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