The Legend-News

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Monday, 2001 August 13 : Volume 4, Number 17

What We Got Here

From Quick To Correctionville: planning for the C.W. McCall Tour 2002 continues.
Commercial-Loaded Zone: Alan Chafin has found the Holy Grail, or at least a good copy of it.
Song A’ Th’ Week: something that you have probably never heard, but you can read it here: "Old Home Is Good Buns".
Old Home Café: In Pisgah for the filming of new commercials.

From Quick To Correctionville

Unless you've been in a cave — in which case, you've been cooler than those of us sweating out here — you ought to know that we're (Alan and Ed) planning the C.W. McCall Tour 2002, a long road trip during the weekend of 7 June 2002. The plan is to go to western Iowa, to Audubon and the surrounding area, and take a day to drive around to all of the places that C.W. McCall has mentioned in his songs.

Well, maybe not all of them (there are a lot), but at least as many as we can fit into one day. We'll stop for pictures, grab a cup of hot C at the Old Home Café, and maybe even find Sloan.

On the second day, we'll hit a few spots in Nebraska. And if we're lucky, we might get a tour of American Gramaphone, otherwise known as the House That Chip Built.

Audience Participation

But we're not planning to do this alone!. All Crispy Critters, licensed or not, are invited to join us on Tour 2002. So if you've got a few days of vacation to spare, or if you just need an excuse to drive around all day, let us know at tour_2002@techren.net. We'll keep you apprised of the itinerary on a new page.

And while you're waiting for the Tour, here's something for you to do: make a list of all of the places that are mentioned in the songs of C.W. McCall. (Hint: try this web site.) Send your list to tour_2002@techren.net; we'll award a special prize to the Critter who submits the longest list.

Caveat: at this time, everything we're planning for Tour 2002 is tentative, and the schedule may change. But don't let that stop you from visiting the place where C.W. got his start.


Commercial-Loaded Zone
by Alan "Skywalker" Chafin

Howdy, Fellow Critters.

Well, it took two years, about 200 hours of personal/research time, and a bit of out of pocket money. However, I found it. I just received a videotape in the mail of the one, the only, the original C. W. McCall Old Home Bread commercial. It is complete, uncut, and in pretty good shape.

My source won't be able to supply me with any of the successive commercials but at least we now have access to the first. This is something of a "Holy Grail" and I suspect some of you would like copies of it as well. (I played the commercial for Ed over the phone. He seemed eager to receive the copy I offered him.)

Now, because of my arrangement with the people who supplied me with this video, I cannot sell copies of this tape. However, I don't believe it would be a violation of our agreement if I supplied copies of the commercial at cost. So, here's the deal: I can send a copy of the commercial for $2.50. That's my cost for a tape, the packaging, and shipping at the media mail rate. I can't do it any cheaper. So if you want a copy, please forward $2.50 in any form you like to and note as to why you're sending it to:

T A Chafin
4753A Westland Blvd
Arbutus, MD 21227-1332

I would like to mention just one more thing. Above, I said that there was a bit of out of pocket expense associated with acquiring this video. If you want a copy of the commercial, just send me $2.50 and I'll send one to you. However, if anyone would like to make a small donation to help me cover the money I spent getting this video, I would certainly appreciate it. I'll probably never get back what I spent but any donations would be appreciated greatly.

And now, here's a bonus. I didn't even tell Ed I was going to send this. Here is my nomination for the C. W. McCall song of the week: the actual lyrics to the original Old Home Bread commercial which started the whole C.W. McCall legend. This is to a tune that is reminiscent of "The Old Home Filler-Up and Keep On A'Truckin' Café" but it's not quite the same.

Song A’ Th’ Week

We're not certain if this song does have a title (we'll ask Bill about that), so for now we're calling it

Old Home Is Good Buns
(Bill Fries, Chip Davis)
From the first C.W. McCall television commercial for Old Home Bread.

Well, Interstate 80
I was truckin' alive
Thermometer read about a hundred and five.
I had a ten-ton Old Home Bread truck
Pumpin' all day
Pumpin' out steam

I had a thousand cubes
And they was runnin' cool
Was 'til I run out of bread truck fuel
At the Old Home Filler-Up and Keep On A'Truckin' Café

Gimme ten gallons

Well, she filled my tank
I said "Thank ya, honey."
Her name was Mavis
I gave her the money
Sez, "How about an Old Home burger
An ice cream cone
To cool myself off with?"

Put a patty on the grill and back she came
Sez, "Tell me, Truck Man,
What's your name?"
I sez "C. W. McCall
And I haul for Old Home
But you can call me C. W."

Well, I gave her a wink
'N' she eyeballed me.
With Old Home love
Plain to see
And then she hand me an Old Home burger
Pretty pink tray
Nice fresh bun.

Well I finished up the burger
Said "Bye now, Hon."
Then left her a truck load of Old Home buns
At the Old Home Filler-Up and Keep On A'Truckin' Café

Old Home is Good Buns


Old Home Café

Another story from the pile of articles which was sent to us by K.C. the Mystery Critter. We're not certain of the newspaper in which this story was published; it was probably not the Des Moines Register. The events herein occurred in 1976. [All typographic errors have been accurately reproduced. — Ed.]

C.W. McCall, Mavis Film Commercials at Pisgah

Leo Alton (B.Q. McCall)

[Editor's note: this is the first of a two-part story on the recent filming of Old Home bread commercials featuring C.W. McCall and Mavis in Pisgah.]

C.W. McCall and Mavis hit Pisgah last week -- and were a smash.

Mama, B.Q. (the newest character), Sloan the dog and the Pisgah Poodle rounded out the visitors along with the production crew.

What was all the excitement about?

The latest Metz Baking Co. bread commercials were in the process of being filmed this time around in the Pisgah area. The commercials, some of the most popular in the nation are aired over local television stations. In addition, the commercials spawned the record hit "Convoy".

The Old Home Filler Up and Keep on Truckin' Café (formerly Hinkel's Café in Pisgah) was used for most of the week for indoor shooting of the commercials, and the F.E. Miller Store across the street was added to the commercials as the site of the sale of a ring to C.W. for Mavis.

SHOOTING SCHEDULE

The crew arrived at 7:30 a.m. Monday morning in Pisgah for a full week of shooting. And the townspeople became in awe of the "stars" of the commercials and the crew for the long hours of shooting, sometimes until 11 p.m.

The cast and crew stayed at a motel just off the Interstate 29 interchange at Missouri Valley.

Purpose of this visit to the area was for filming of three new 60-second commercials for Bozell and Jacobs Ad Agency in Omaha.

One involes C.W. buying Mavis a ring at the F.E. Miller Store. The second involves Sloan, the dog, falling for a little black poodle, appropriately called the "Poodle from Pisgah". And the third commercial introduces an new character, C.W.'s father called B.Q. who meets Mavis' mother.

THE CAST

"Stars" of the commercials working on the set included C.W. McCall played by Jim Finlayson of Tyler, Texas; (the voice of Bill Fries is heard in the commercials. Fries used the name C.W. McCall for his smash hit "Convoy"); Mavis played by Jeannie Capps of Dallas, Texas; Mama played by Dorothy Forster of Wicheta Fall, Texas; and the newest addition to the cast, C.W.'s father called B.Q. (it stands for Be Quiet, according to his wife) played by Leo Alton of Pisgah.

The crew includes director Burt Rodrigez and assistance director Don Levitan as well as a cameraman, assistant cameraman and two other assistants.

MUCH PRAISE

Residents from Pisgah who chatted about the film crew had nothing but praise for the group.

"They're might fine people," said Francis Miller of Miller's Store. He has a non-speaking role in which he sells a ring to C.W. McCall for Mavis.

"I admire their stamina with those long hard hours," said Mrs. Lucile Miller his wife.

Francis and Lucille Miller

Mrs. Darolyd (Phyllis) Hinkel, owner of the cafe along with her husband, commented similarly to other people visiting the back of the caef during production shooting.

Inside scenes for some of the commercials were shot at the cafe while outside shots were filmed near and in Pisgah.

The crew starts shooting about 7:30 or 8 a.m., according to Levitan, and finishes for the day about 10 or 10:30 p.m.

One entire afternoon was spent shooting the scene in one upcoming commercial where C.W. tells Mavis he has something special for her (a ring) but it's across the street (in Miller's Store).

An evening was spent shooting two scenes - one where C.W. and Mavis enter Miller's Store to buy the ring and the otherwhere they leave the store after purchasing the ring.

SOME REHEARSING

Before each scene is actuallly shot involving C.W. McCall talking, a period of time is spent rehearsing where Finlayson mouths or "lip-syncs" the words of the commercials to a tape recording of Fries' voice.

On the afternoon of the shooting of the Mavis-C.W. ring scene, Finlayson went over the scene several times with Ms. Capps prior to the cameras rolling.

The director stood just out of camera range with the tape recorder and gave directions to Finlayson.

"You don't have it right (the lip synchronization)."

"Use your eyes more."

"You're putting to much into it" -- at which time Finlayson started laughing and the directed yelled "cut".

The director
(The photo had no caption. The man is either the director, Burt Rodriguez, or the assistant director, Don Levitan. — Ed.)

The cafe was the center of attraction in town that afternoon. All of the windows were blacked out with black pastic to give the impression of night inside the cafe.

Local residents were crammed into the back part of the cafe where there was no shooting, gawking every once-in-awhile to see what they could of the actual filming.

Several times assistant director Levitan raised his voice to say, "Quiet on the set" when the cameras were about to roll.

SOME PROBLEMS

Problems do occur from time to time during the filming schedule.

Part of the problems sometimes involved Finlayson mouthing the words of Fries.

"It's part of the charm of the commercial," said Levitan "but it's a little tricky."

If the day involves outside shooting, rain can be murder.

One afternoon a member of the Bozel and Jacobs Agency raced in to Levitan with the news that "Sarah", the trainer of Sloan the dog and the new Pisgah Poodle, was ill.

The crew had been waiting for her to arrive with the dogs so some scenes could be filmed. She was late. The ad executive from Bozell and Jacobs went looking for her.

He reported to Levitan he found her car "Down by the fruit market" and she had become ill, form the description of the symptoms, with stomach flu.

It also was supposed to be the last day of shooting of the Texas actor and actresses, but Levitan admitted that if they held to that schedule, it would be a terribly late day.

They had not yet begun to film the actual purchase of the ring and it was 6 p.m.

After the cast leaves, the crew stays to work on outside footage. For this purpose Bill Gainey of Metz Baking Co. is used the entire week. A former semi truck route man woh is now an area sales manager, he is C.W. McCall's "double" for any film shot at a distance showing the bread truck rolling down the highway.

Then the crew packs up its gear and returns to Texas for the final stages of putting together the most popular commercials in the region.

[Next issue: part two.]


The Legend-News is Copyright 2001 TechRen Enterprises. "Did we hit an iceberg?" "Off the coast of Virginia?" Thanks to Bill Fries and Chip Davis for the words and music.