October 23, 2009


SOUPY SALES  1/8/26 – 10/22/09

“Back in 1966, I was one of the first Americans to have open heart surgery. As they rolled me back in from the ICU, the doctor said to lie still or I could undo 122 stitches. I turned the TV on to Soupy Sales and started laughing so hard the nurse had to stitch me back up!

She turned the TV off, put the remote out of my reach, and tucked me in so I could hardly move. As soon as I heard the sound of her sensible shoes disappearing down the hall, I got up, walked over and turned the TV back on and watched the end of Soupy’s show with the sound off…holding back laughter and stifling tears of joy.

I didn’t know my doctor was watching all of this from the hall with a smile on his face. He told me later that I made medical history by walking 36 hours after such a serious operation. Of course I thanked God, but I also had a chance to thank Soupy a few months later during one of his personal appearances.

Although his fans were in frenzy all around him, he took a few minutes to talk to me. After he heard my story, and humbly accepted my gratitude. He ended our conversation by putting his hands to his ears and doing a little bit of “The Mouse”!

Soupy…you touched so many people’s lives in so many ways. Thank you again for the profound effect you’ve had on mine.


Respectfully, Artie Wayne

Copyright 2009 by Artie Wayne





  1. Vinnie Bell Says:

    Dear Artie, Being the ‘luckiest guitarist’ in the world, there are often-times I will receive a nice
    compliment… BUT, One of the greatest came from
    Soupy Sales himself! When I got the call to play on his album I was so excited because I was a ‘Staunch’
    fan of Soupy’s, and had appeared on his TV show in Detroit,years before. On a five minute break I
    tried to remind Soupy that I played his Detroit TV
    show but he stopped my sentence to tell me that he
    did remember me and proceded to mention every song
    that I recorded on three of my albums. (I don’t even remember the name of the labels!!!) His favorite
    was “Airport Love Theme”.
    R.I.P. Great, Kind, Funny, Soupy Sales…

  2. Bobbi Cowan Says:

    Hi Artie…
    I had the opportunity to work with the Soupster, right after I came back to LA from Maui (1991). I was doing projects for Rhino Records and Video, and they were releasing a series of the original Soupy Sales TV shows on Video. He cane out to LA, and was scheduled to do a show somewhere in Hollywood (I think it was the Improv), when the Rodney King verdict came down, and there were riots all over town, causing the cancellation of Soupy’s show. Anyway, I got to spend the day with him doing interviews, and found him sweet and adorable and very funny. Of course, I grew up watching him, along with “Time for Beany” “Sheriff John” and Korla Pandit (?)…
    He was a special soul and will be missed.
    Thanks for thes remembrance..
    Bobbi Cowan

  3. Mary Weiss Says:

    Hi Artie:

    Just watching that clip made me smile.
    I used to watch Soupy in grammar school.
    When my group The Shangri-Las was asked to do
    his show, I almost jumped up and down.
    He was wonderful. He was a big kid who never grew
    I remember White Fang and Black tooth too.
    I thought he was so ahead of his time.
    My thoughts are with his family and friends.
    Actually, we were all his friends.
    I wish him peace.
    He will be greatly missed.
    He was and always will be a true Classic.


    Mary Weiss

  4. NewMediaJoe Says:

    As a young pre-teenager in the early sixties, I was a HUGE fan of Soupy Sales! I made it a point to watch his show (which was on ABC for a couple of years) and just loved the humor and schtick that set it apart from all the other shows aimed at kids. I actually was watching when Soupy staged the infamous stunt that got him suspended for a week or two (when he told kids to go find green pictures of presidents in their parent’s rooms and mail them to him) and his infamous “finger salute” to his characters and producer (which lead to his being taken off the air on ABC).

    I had the album THE SOUPY SALES SHOW and used to listen to it over and over again. I loved the line near the end about one of his walk-on sidekicks (whose name I can’t remember) having to leave for a new job in New Delhi. “New Delhi, India?” Soupy asked? “No,” the sidekick replied. “NEW DELICATESSAN! I start there Monday!” Not that funny, but so deliciously off-the-wall, which was what was so endearing about Soupy and so many other comic geniuses of the time!

    This all was decades BEFORE Pee-Wee Herman achieved great success and fame using a similar format and style (albeit even more bizarre and “over-the-top” than Soupy).

    In the late sixties, two local Los Angeles comedians named GENE MOSS and JIM THURMAN, who had been writing scripts and providing voices for the ROGER RAMJET cartoon series, paid a huge homage to Soupy as stars of a relatively short-lived and unknwon, but very funny, local Los Angeles daily afternoon children’s television show called SHRIMPENSTEIN. The show was centered around a wacky miniature Frankenstien character and his “creator” named “Dr. Von Schtick.” Like on Soupy’s show, “Shrimpy” and “Schticko” were regularly visited by other wacky, mostly off-camera characters.

    The Shrimpenstien Show, created by writers Mike Dormer and Lee Teacher, who had been working with Moss and Thurman off and on for a few years,
    was, in fact, modeled after the off-the-wall ABC show that Soupy had starred in several years earlier. The show, like Soupy’s featured an off-camera (except for his arm and paw) furry carrier named “Klaus,” who was very much like the lovable “White Fang” character in Soupy’s show.

    I and a friend of mine who lived down the street from me were such fans of Shrimpenstein, that we used to take a bus from our homes in the San Fernando Valley to the Hollywood television studio just to hang out on the set of “Shrimpenstein” with Moss and Thurman, who actually welcomed us as fans and allowed us to come back to that show, over and over.

    The duo went on to do a local comedy-talk show. Gene (who, sadly, passed away a few years ago) went on to become a successful voice-over artist, who I hired many years later to voice a few record album commercials I was producing in the eighties.

    Both Gene and Jim knew Soupy and were, themselves, huge fans. When I worked with Gene years later, we talked often about Soupy’s keen wit and brilliant routines, that really were so ahead of their time in the early sixties!

    One one occasion in 1987, I had the unexpected pleasure of having a great chance encounter with Soupy Sales for the first time. He was involved in the editing and sweetening of some sort of a promotional television show at a video post production house in Hollywood where I was working on another project.

    When we met, I told him what a great fan I was, how I loved his sixties television show and record album. We went on to talk about the show and he told me some amazing stories from those days. We talked about the Shrimpenstein show, Gene Moss, Jim Thurman (who Soupy had himself met and hung out with on a few prior occasions) and other comic geniuses like George Carlin, Woody Allen, Mel Brooks, Carl Reiner, Sid Caesar and many others.

    This amazing hour with Soupy was during a lunch break at the studio, and I had this awesome experience of lunching and talking with him for nearly an hour. He was such a warm and outgoing guy. Yet I did detect hints of melancholy as we mused about his greatest years decades earlier. It was an experience I remember vividly to this day, and will always treasure.

    I’ll never forget Milton Supman, the comic genius so known and beloved as Soupy Sales, and hope he is having now having a total blast yukking it up as he throws and receives endless pies in the face from his fellow heavenly comedic giants who, like Soupy, will live on in our hearts forever.

  5. tom slocum Says:

    Artie: thank you for sharing..Soupy had my full attenttion when he came on the air…My grandmother laughed her sweet ol butt off, as we all did…Soupy was the great escape, with all his wonderfull comedic material…I did the Mouse in the mirror this morning as a tribute..he was a sweet guy..

  6. Jimmy Says:

    Dad and I used to watch him on TV in Brooklyn, leaning up against our refrigerator, me in his lap. We loved Soupy !!

  7. Joey Reynolds Says:

    Thank you for your tribute, here is a radio salute from my show,


  8. Art
    Looks like Soupy Sales is gone.

    I remember the fun time Joey and I had at his Star.(see picture above)

  9. Brooks Arthur Says:

    Loved Soupy! Wasn’t he Steve (Pied Piper) Duboff’s neighbor?


  10. Artie: I produced his hit “Do The Mouse,” Soupy was a fun lovin’ and regular guy. I didn’t know he died.

  11. Clark Besch Says:

    Soupy Sales? What can you say? He was a classic performer. No one like him–before or since. He died this week, but will always be remembered by those who watched him on TV and listened to him on radio as I did in the 80’s a little. The pie in the face was most remembered. 9000 times, Soupy once estimated! This year, the Yankees had fun doing that a lot and now they are in the World Series!
    Each year on my radio show, one song was sure to be played on my Halloween show. Soupy Sales’ 1960’s 45 “My baby’s Got a Crush on Frankenstein” on Frank Sinatra’s record label, Reprise! It was not a hit, but Soupy DID have a hit in 1965 with his dance song “The Mouse”! Did you ever do the Mouse dance?? With Soupy creating it, it involved putting your outstretched hands to your ears and doing the “Na na na na” gesture with the fingers. THAT was basically “The Mouse” dance! He actually performed the dance and song on Ed Sullivan the same night the Beatles appeared in 1965! Is HE the 5th Beatle?? Soupy also was one of the few white artists to have a single out on legendary Motown records in the 60’s too! Slapstick is what Soupy’s humor was often, but he had a unique blend of sincerity and irreverence to it. Soupy, we remember you as Halloween comes near with your classic song.
    I see Joey Reynolds posted a note. Joey followed Soupy in 86 on WNBC’s lineup. The show I taped, he admitted he was in Soupy’s desk stealing jokes that day. What a lineup WNBC had back in the 80’s: Imus, Soupy, Joey!

  12. Hi,
    I loved watching Soupy.
    I also remember White Fang and Black tooth.
    The show was so funny.
    I also recall his son having a band called Tony & the Tigers.


    Linda Farnsworth

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