When We're Singin'

A Tribute to Executive Producer Bob Claver

Partridge Family TV ShowJohn Miller1 Comment

During the month of December, and only weeks after the passing of David Cassidy, Partridge Family Executive Producer Bob Claver quietly passed away after a brave battle with Alzheimer’s. He was a huge supporter of When We're Singin', and I'd like to share a few words about this great man who gave the world of entertainment many, many great television programs.

Bob Claver 5 courtesy of Nancy Witherell.jpg

After my very first interview with Shirley Jones she told me that I needed to speak with Bob Claver. She said he was a great producer and she had a terrific relationship with him because he always dealt with everyone so fairly and with such professionalism. She said she had worked with a lot of producers through the years and they were not all like that. When I spoke with Bob, he had the same kind of respect for Shirley. He felt very close to Shirley through those years and off camera they shared a great friendship, supporting each other in their personal lives as well. Their ability to unite, to be a team and to teach the young actors how to stick together, is something that made a great impression on me.

Bob was my third or fourth interview for When We’re Singin.’ I had watched an archival interview with him beforehand, and I was really excited (and really nervous!) to have the chance to speak with him.

He was extremely knowledgeable and articulate about his life in the business and his time on The Partridge Family. The quality I remember most about him was his straight forward nature in answering every question with precise detail. He was a listener too, and he picked up on a few comments I made about my own life early in the conversation and brought them back into the dialog at the very end. I noticed it, and it felt really nice. It was a certain nod of approval that I cherish to this day, and will always remember.

It was Bob Claver’s daughter, Nancy, who initially connected me with her father for the interview. Shortly afterwards Nancy together with her father, became backers for the book, supporting the Kickstarter campaign and everything that went into the book’s publication.

During the campaign, Bob signed 25 bookmarks that were used to help raise funds. He even offered to sign copies of the book for all those who purchased it through the campaign, but sadly the Altzheimer’s had begun to set in and take hold by the time the book was printed.

Nancy cared for her father all through the run of that horrible disease, and when he passed in December 2017, she sent me a very thoughtful note, as my own mother had passed from dementia in June 2016, six months before the publication of the book.

I felt a certain kinship with Nancy through those last few years. She and her father became people I could call friends. Nancy told me that at one point when the disease was getting bad, she was reading passages from the book to him, and she could see him nod and smile with approval over the words chosen to represent him and his memories of that period in his life. That warmed my heart.

Bob actually began his career on Captain Kangaroo, a show many of us watched as young children—a show that influenced us to be kind to one another, gentle and caring. If only there were more shows like that on TV today. Thanks to Bob Claver, we had one of the best.

His experience on that show and his passion for kids carried through in everything he did, and anyone who watches The Partridge Family can see that the Executive Producer, Bob Claver, had his pulse, influence and control over every line and every script ever produced for that show.

I remember him telling me that they did an episode about Danny thinking he was adopted, and it scared children across the nation. It was the only show that received letters of concern, and for some time it was not included in the syndicated reruns. He was sad by this because, he said, it didn’t produce the kind of feelings for children that he believed in. He didn’t like the idea of anyone—child or adult—feeling confused about their family identity.

The Partridge Family was also known for tackling topical issues of the day—racial prejudice, religion, environment to name a few, and Bob was particularly proud of those episodes because he felt they made a positive difference in the lives of children. He cared very much about their sensitivities.

We lost a show business legend when we lost Bob Claver, and I hope that you will all say a silent prayer for him, for Nancy and for the rest of his loving family left behind. —Johnny Ray Miller

Book Signing at THE STEEL CITY CON, Monroeville PA, April 13, 14 and 15!

David Cassidy, Partridge Family TV ShowJohn MillerComment

While my wishes come weeks after the ball has dropped in Times Square,....Happy New Year to everyone! I hope the fresh new year is bringing plenty of joy to you all.

As we begin booking dates for 2018, I'm very excited to announce the first appearance ever for WHEN WE'RE SINGIN' at the Steel City Con in Monroeville, PA on April 13, 14 and 15. I hope some of you can come. I'll be doing book signings all three days. 

This convention is one of the biggest in the nation. If you are a fan of THE FLASH TV series (one of my guilty pleasures) John Wesley Shipp is on the celebrities appearance list for all three days! Shipp played THE FLASH in the original 80s version, in addition to his role on the series currently airing on the CW. Gary Busey, Alice Cooper, and Barbara Eden are all on the list of the many others who plan on attending. It should be a fun weekend for all. Here's the link...hope to see you!! https://www.steelcitycon.com

Christmas with David Cassidy & The Partridge Family! Tonight, 12-18-17, WBWC 88.3 10PM EST!

John MillerComment

WBWC 88.3 The Sting with @Dennis King will be doing a special Christmas tribute to David Cassidy and The Partridge Family tonight at 10PM Eastern. He'll be playing several Christmas songs from A PARTRIDGE FAMILY CHRISTMAS CARD and A DAVID CASSIDY XMAS. I'll be on as a guest to talk about some of the songs and the album that became the No. 1 Christmas seller of 1971. Hope some of you can listen in! http://wbwc.com/

Speaking to the Musical Legacy of DAVID CASSIDY--on 610CKTB and KLBB

John MillerComment

I've been asked to speak to David Cassidy's legacy this evening on the Larry Fedoruk radio show, 610CKTB out of Canada, covering the Niagara region. Here is the link. The segment will be short, airing at approximately 6:15PM this evening. http://www.iheartradio.ca/…/the-larry-fedoruk-show-1.1816268

 

Earlier today, I spoke with KLBB in a segment that played both I THINK I LOVE YOU and SUMMER DAYS. I will post both links as soon as I can.

He Made Us Happy. Goodbye, Dear Friend.

John Miller2 Comments
DC in PF outtake shot Album.jpg

Tonight the world lost a man who served as one of the greatest influences on the youth of an entire generation. It has been a night of devasation for all of us who loved David Cassidy. We lost an entertainer of magnificent proportions, but saddest of all, we lost a good man. A simple man at heart.

I’m still struggling hard with this. I can only imagine how his family feels.

David had that amazing ability to comfort us through his music in such a personal way. He brought us ...calmness when we needed calming and endless energy when we needed excitement. He entered my life (most all of our lives) at a very young age when we were our most impressionable, and I thank God for such an influence. His music got me through. Still does. His voice always emanates comfort regardless of the style of the song. He brought us that special something you can’t describe that only the greats are capable of. And for many, including myself, he was also an inspiration through those years of searching for who we want to be, what we might become and someday hope to be. I chose a branch of the entertainment industry because of David Cassidy.

There is no celebrity on this planet who has brought me more happiness. As a kid I use to escape to the room above our garage when I wanted to get away from the world and I would play my Partridge Family and David Cassidy records over and over. I’d just sit there and hold those album covers and mentally check out for however long I needed to. Turned out to be a lifetime! I am so very, very grateful for that man.
I hope and I pray that somehow, someway he knew beyond any shadow of any doubt how much comfort and pleasure he gave to so many millions of people--not just then, but all the way up to the present. His fan base is strong and devout.

I have never been influenced or star-struck over any celebrity the way I was by David. He was my John Lennon. He was my Jimmy Hendrix. He was my introduction to pop music, to rock music and to the blues. He was my safe place.

Damn, I’m choking up again.

I have memory after memory tied to David Cassidy, and I can’t begin to share all the stories in one fell swoop. But thank God for those memories. Thank God for David Cassidy and all the happiness he brought us. Thank God for the friends so many of us have together, as a fan base. Thank God for his supportive and wonderful family. Now it is time to pray for them.

The greatest of sympathies and compassions for all David’s loved ones who now need their own time to heal.

And David...man.... we will miss you.

Peace.

Sending Tons of Love to David Cassidy

John Miller1 Comment

47 years ago today, I THINK I LOVE YOU was the number 1 song in America. It displaced the Beatles "I'll Be There" from the top slot, and became the biggest selling single in Bell Records History; the most recorded and performed song of 1970, winning the BMI Award; the fastest selling single, winning the National Association of Recorders Merchandising; the No. 6 song for all of 1970 and the No. 46 song of the entire decade of the '70s. It has always been one of David's favorite songs from a body of work that has spanned 5 decades. For 47 years and at hundreds of concerts to date, David has told us the lyrics are "how I feel about all of you." It's time to reciprocate it.

An Evening of Partridge Family, November 13, Rocky River, OH!

John MillerComment

My dear friend from school days, Lori Bott, is hosting an evening of appetizers, fun and yes, Partridge Family, on November 13 at Renuvo Hair Salon! Bring a bottle of wine and join us! I'll be doing a photo presentation (which includes some neverr-before-seen photos courtesy of Henry Diltz), book signing and plenty of Q&A fun starting at 6:30PM that evening and I sure hope some of you can come! More gettin' happy! :) Link is attached! Spread the word!

https://scontent.fagc1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t34.0-12/22331006_10214772466531179_441382054_n.jpg?oh=866a14fccae610eff8b8b3f22dc10892&oe=59F93793

Book Signing at THE HOLLYWOOD SHOW! And SHIRLEY JONES attending!!

John MillerComment

There's been a lot of exciting developments lately, and most recently I'm  happy to announce that I will be a participant in THE HOLLYWOOD SHOW this weekend. I'll have a table with books for sale, and several other items that were created to compliment the book during the Kickstarter campaign. The best part of all is that they are putting my table right next to Shirley Jones, who will also be attending. I am incredibly honored by this.

I hope that some of you, especially those in the L.A. and surrounding areas will consider stopping by and saying hello. There's so many of you from the West coast I've never met, and I would be so very happy to meet you. You have all been along on this magic bus ride from the very beginning. 

The Hollywood Show is this weekend, October 20-22nd at the Westin Hotel. Here's the link for complete details: 

https://www.hollywoodshow.com

https://www.hollywoodshow.com/faq.php