Jerry Leiber, Writer of Enduring Rock Classics, on What’s My Line? (1958)

Jer­ry Leiber died yes­ter­day at the age of 78. Leiber was­n’t a house­hold name dur­ing most of his career. But his com­po­si­tions are known world­wide. Along with his part­ner Mike Stoller, Leiber wrote “Hound Dog,” “Jail­house Rock,” and “Treat Me Nice,” among oth­ers songs made famous by Elvis Pres­ley dur­ing the 1950s. They also com­posed “Stand by Me,” a tune sung by Ben E. King in 1960, then cov­ered count­less times. (We par­tic­u­lar­ly like this ver­sion.)

The clip above takes you back to 1958, when Leiber and Stoller appeared on the long-run­ning tele­vi­sion show What’s My Line?. If you’ve watched some of these vin­tage episodes, you’ll know that the pan­el usu­al­ly wore blind­folds lest the iden­ti­ty of the guest be imme­di­ate­ly revealed. But there was no risk of that in the case of Leiber & Stoller. And, by the way, it’s worth men­tion­ing that Vin­cent Price made a spe­cial guest appear­ance on the pan­el that night.

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