Martha Reeves

Photo: Aug856

When you think of the best of Motown in the late 1950s and early ‘60s, one of the names that has to be near the top of the list it Martha and the

Behind lead singer Martha Reeves, they racked up a series of hit singles.

Finally, 30 years after their heyday, Martha Reeves wrote a memoir. And that’s when I met her.

So here now, from 1994, Martha Reeves:

Martha Reeves celebrated her 80th birthday a couple of weeks ago. And she still tours and performs.

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Cesar Millan

A dog may be man’s best friend, but many of us unconsciously do things that can undermine that relationship, says Cesar Millan, otherwise known as The Dog Whisperer.

When I met him a 2006, his show was just nicely taking off, he had a large following, and was so very eager to talk about the dogs he had known.

So here now, from 2006, Cesar Millan.

Cesar Millan will be 52 in August. And he remains active in dog training, as well as advocacy for abandoned and abused animals.

John Sculley

Photo: Judae1

Doing a 13-year career at PepsiCo, including six years as its president, John Scully prove to be something of a marketing genius.

If you’ve ever seen The Pepsi Challenge, well .. that was John Sculley’s idea.

Then he made the switch from selling flavored sugar carbonated water to selling personal computers.

In 1983 Scully became CEO of Apple. And soon, behind his marketing skills, Apple had rival i b m on the run.

In 1987, in the middle of his 10-year run at Apple, Scully wrote a book about his transition from Pepsi. And that’s when I met him.

Two things to note about this interview. No, three things.

First, John Sculley apparently had had the services of a consultant who told him to be sure and mention his book in every answer. So you’ll hear lots of references to the title of his book, Odyssey.

The second thing you need to know is that I learned a very important lesson in this interview. And that is, always check your microphone. It turns out that mine was basically turned off for the entire interview, and I didn’t realize it. That’s why it sounds a little strange.

But the third thing, the most intriguing thing, this is 1987. Very few people had personal computers, yet Scully is talking about things that today seem commonplace. It’s like we went back to the future.

So here now, from 1987, John Sculloey.

John Sculley is 82 now. He remains active in high-tech startups, as well as disruptive marketing strategies.

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Carl Lewis

The covid-delayed Tokyo Olympics get underway today. We’ll seen enougbh know who the next athletic heroes will be.

Throughout the 1980s and into the ‘90s, one of the world’s dominant sprinters and long jumpers with Carl Lewis.

In addition to several world championships, Lewis won gold Olympic gold medals in 1984, 1988, 1992, 1996.

Sports Illustrated once named him “Olympian Of Tje Century.”

No doubt Carl Louis was one of the world’s greatest athletes. The problem, according to many of his competitors, was that he was much too aware of how good he was, and eager to show it off.

Critics said Lewis lacked sufficient humility. And, they said, he was too aloof.

I met him in the summer of 1990, after he wrote a book called Inside Track.

So here now, from 1990, Carl Lewis:

Carl turned 60 this month. He owns a marketing and branding company.

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Jimmy & Rosalynn Carter

In November 1980, after serving just one term as President, Jimmy Carter was voted out of office. The following January he and First Lady Rosalynn Carter moved back to their hometown of Plains, Georgia.

But they didn’t simply settle into a quiet life of retirement and leisure. Quite the opposite.

Just a few years later, in 1987, the two of them wrote a book called Everything to Gain. Their aim was to help people in all walks of life — not just former presidents — navigate their later years.

Amd tjat’s how I met them.

So here now, from 1987, Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter.

Earlier this month the Carters celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary, with a star-studded party in .. of course .. Plains, Georgia. Jimmy Catter is 96 now. Rosalynn Carter is 93.

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Michael Collins

Fifty-two years ago this week the world watched in fascination, as Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first human beings to set foot on the surface of the moon.

As they were planting their footprints on the moon, orbiting above it was the third member of the history-making crew, Michael Collins.

After all, someone had to stay in the car with the motor running while Armstrong and Aldrin did their thing.

More than 20 years later, I met and interviewed Mike Collins. Twice, in fact. The interview you’re going to here was the second one we did, about a book he wrote called Missino to Mars

So here now, from 1990, astronaut Michael Collins…

Michael Collins died this past April. He was 90.

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Ginger Rogers

Ginger Rogers is one of those Hollywood figures who transcended mere stardom, and became a cultural icon.

In the 1930s she and her dance partner Fred Astaire dominated American film.

Her talent was apparent early on. At age 14, she wanted Charleston dance contest.

And before long she was in vaudeville, then Broadway, and finally the movies.

And then RKO Pictures paired her with Fred Astaire, and the rest, as they say, is history.

And it was famously said of her that she could do everything Fred Astaire could do, but backwards and in high heels. You’ll hear more about that in this interview…

Finally, in 1991 at age 80 Ginger Rogers wrote her autobiography. And that’s when I met her.

Wheelchair-bound, and looking a bit frail, Rogers nevertheless melted my heart.

So here now, from 1991, Ginger Rogers.

Ginger Rogers died in 1995, at the age of 84. But had she lived, she would have marked her 110th birthday today, July 16th.

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R. Lee Ermey

It takes a certain kind of man to be a successful u.s. Marine drill instructor. It seems to come naturally to some men.

And one of them turned it into a successful acting career.

R. Lee Ermey was nominated for a Golden Globe for his work in the 1987 film “Full Metal Jacket.”

He went on to play tough, rugged authority figures in a number of other movies — even “Toy Story.”

In 2002 the History Channel came calling, and made Ermey the star of the show “Mail Call, which quickly became the network’s most popular show.”

It was in the middle of that show’s seven-year run that I met R. Lee Ermey, when he came out with a book based on the series.

And no need to cover your ears. This interview is G-rated.

So here now, from 2005, R. Lee Ermey.

R. Lee Ermey died in 2018. He was 74.

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David Brinkley

Young journalist David Brinkley first came to Washington, D.C. in 1943, just as World War II was transforming the nation’s capital.

The sleepy Southern town that had been home to a small federal government suddenly burgeoned into a major city filled with office buildings, bureaucracy, lobbyists, and lots of money.

After the wa, in 1956, NBC paired Brinkley with Chet Huntley to co-anchor their nightly news.

After leaving NBC in the 1970s, Brinkley joined ABC, where he was the founding host of the Sunday morning show “This Week.” He retired in 1997.

It was in the late 1980s that Brinkley wrote his first book, on account of the War years called Washington Goes to War. It became a major bestseller. And that’s when I met him.

So here now, from 1989, David Brinkley.

David Brinkley died in 2003. He was 82.

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Charles Grodin


His first big break in the movies came with a film called The Heartbreak Kid.

But that was just the beginning for Charles Grodin.

Then came Midnight Run. Seems Like Old Times. The Lonely Guy. And, finally, a new generation discovered him in the Beethoven movies.

It looks like the classic success story. But in his 1989 book called It Would Be So Nice if You Weren’t Here, Grodin wanted to reveal how about 1% success overshadowed the 99% rejection actors suffer.

This interview was actually the first of several I had over the years with Charles Grodin, before he went on to become a successful late night TV talk show host.

So here now, from 1989, Charles Grogan.

Charles Grodin died in May. He was 85.

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