Pierre Cossette

Producer


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In his two-hour Archive interview, Pierre Cossette (1923-2009) talks about his early career as an agent at MCA, where he quickly gained a reputation for booking clients at colleges across the country. He describes his relationship with agency head Lew Wasserman and shares how Wasserman assigned him to booking clubs in Las Vegas. He speaks about starting his own record label with Lou Adler (and others) called Dunhill records and talks of independently representing musical talents, like Ann-Margret and Jose Feliciano, and booking them on The Andy Williams Show. He outlines his long association as executive-producer of The Grammys from 1971-2005. Cossette relates behind-the-scenes stories about the show, including when host Kenny Rogers came down with laryngitis, his early difficulties booking Billy Joel, and his objection to opening one of The Grammys shows with Alicia Keys. He defines his philosophy of producing and what abilities made him a successful producer. Bonnie Datt conducted the interview on June 4, 2008 in Los Angeles, California.

"A successful television producer needs to learn what the word 'tenacity' means, and stick with that word, and repeat that word to yourself every day. Tenacity. Be tenacious." 

Highlights
Pierre Cossette on getting Billy Joel on The Grammys
05:02
Pierre Cossette on musicians who were not well liked at The Grammys
02:54
Pierre Cossette on dealing with Standards and Practices with The Grammys and how the show has changed over the years
02:48
Pierre Cossette on singing live vs. lip-synching on The Grammys
01:13
Pierre Cossette on starting Dunhill Records in 1965
08:09
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early life and influences; on the first time he saw television
13:45
On the first music shows he produced; on becoming an agent at MCA; on booking acts for Las Vegas
13:15
On dealing with casinos in Las Vegas while being an agent at MCA; on founding Dunhill Records
20:27
On his first television special as a producer; on producing television specials for Jose Felicano and Dionne Warwick
12:42

Chapter 2

On what made him a successful television producer; on producing The Grammys; on producing The Grammys from Nashville
17:26
On his favorite Grammys moments; on singing live vs. lip synching on The Grammys; on working with Ken Ehrlich on The Grammys
13:37
On musicians who were not well liked at The Grammys; on dealing with the network and NARAS on The Grammys; on his Grammys production team; on dealing with Standards and Practices with The Grammys
13:35
On producing Sha Na Na; on his producing style
11:12

Chapter 3

On getting Billy Joel on The Grammys; on how appearing on The Grammys helps artists; on the demographics of The Grammys
08:16
On advice to an aspiring producer; on his proudest career achievements and regrets; on his autobiography and how he'd like to be remembered
11:05
Shows

Grammys, The

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Pierre Cossette on producing The Grammys
07:31
Pierre Cossette on his producing partner Burt Sugarman and The Grammys
01:58
Pierre Cossette on convincing producers to do The Grammys from Nashville
06:10
Pierre Cossette on his favorite Grammy moments
05:37
Pierre Cossette on singing live vs. lip-synching on The Grammys
01:13
Pierre Cossette on working with the performers at The Grammys
04:43
Pierre Cossette on working with Ken Ehrlich on The Grammys
02:00
Pierre Cossette on musicians who were not well liked at The Grammys
02:54
Pierre Cossette on dealing with the network and NARAS on The Grammys
03:50
Pierre Cossette on making The Grammys successful from a technical standpoint and his production team
03:12
Pierre Cossette on dealing with Standards and Practices with The Grammys and how the show has changed over the years
02:48
Pierre Cossette on getting Billy Joel on The Grammys
05:02
Pierre Cossette on how appearing on The Grammys helps artists
01:42
Pierre Cossette on the demographics of The Grammys
01:31

Sha Na Na

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Pierre Cossette on producing Sha Na Na
06:50
Topics

Advice

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Pierre Cossette on advice to an aspiring producer
00:50

Censorship / Standards & Practices

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Pierre Cossette on dealing with Standards and Practices with The Grammys  and how the show has changed over the years
02:48

First Big Break

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Pierre Cossette on the first music shows he produced
05:16

Pivotal Career Moments

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Pierre Cossette on the first music shows he produced
05:16

Television Industry

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Pierre Cossette on dealing with Standards and Practices with The Grammys  and how the show has changed over the years
02:48
Pierre Cossette on advice to an aspiring producer
00:50
Professions

Producers

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Pierre Cossette on what made him a successful television special producer
01:32
Pierre Cossette on his producing style
04:20
Pierre Cossette on advice to an aspiring producer
00:50
Genres

Awards Shows

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Pierre Cossette on producing The Grammys  (Part 1)
43:06
Pierre Cossette on producing The Grammys (Part 2)
08:16

Music Shows & Variety Shows/Specials

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Pierre Cossette on producing television specials for Dionne Warwick and Jose Feliciano
07:45
People

Anna Maria Alberghetti

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Pierre Cossette on his first show as a television producer
01:06

Ann-Margret

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Pierre Cossette on the artists of Dunhill Records
01:20
Pierre Cossette on using television to publicize the acts on Dunhill Records
02:30

Burt Bacharach

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Pierre Cossette on producing television specials for Dionne Warwick and Jose Feliciano
07:45

Ken Ehrlich

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Pierre Cossette on working with Ken Ehrlich
02:00

Billy Joel

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Pierre Cossette on getting Billy Joel on The Grammys
05:02

Burt Sugarman

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Pierre Cossette on his partner Burt Sugarman and The Grammys
01:59

Dionne Warwick

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Pierre Cossette on producing television specials for Dionne Warwick and Jose Feliciano
07:44

Lew Wasserman

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Pierre Cossette on becoming an agent at MCA
03:23
Pierre Cossette on booking acts for Las Vegas
04:36

Andy Williams

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Pierre Cossette on using television to publicize the acts on Dunhill Records
02:30
Pierre Cossette on producing The Grammys
07:31

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