Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Song #277: "Match Game Theme" (1970's version)

In its initial run, Match Game was a rather staid game show, as game shows were in the 1950's and early 1960's. The show ran on NBC from 1962 to 1969, hosted by the popular Gene Rayburn. The theme song then was Bert Kaempfert's "Swingin' Safari".

A look at the 1962 pilot episode is available here.

Along came the 1970's, and CBS decided to, as we would now say today, "reboot" the game show, and give it a significantly updated feel. Loud carpeting, lots of twinkling lights, the revolving contestants, and a new theme song.

Interestingly enough, one thing remained the same, at least at the very outset, and that was the aforementioned staid feel of the show. The pilot episode was surreal when now compared to the well-known zany format that launched the show into a long period of success, and, eventually, Richard Dawson to "Family Feud".

I watched many a Match Game getting home after school and during the summertime. When Game Show Network (GSN) appeared in the 1990's, it was great to have Gene, Brett Somers, Charles Nelson Reilly and the other casts of characters back on my screen. Add the skinny microphone and Gene's silent odes to his wife Helen, and this is game show gold.

And it was also fun to hear this song again. Below is an episode, plus an extra video showing every New Year's Eve sign change from 1973 to 1979.

This theme is so good, it'll leave you "Blank"!  :)

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