'Tis the season to be jolly, unless you're singer Darlene Love, who is quite bitter at her treatment by the producers of NBC's Christmas in Rockefeller Center special.
The 78-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer posted a diatribe on Facebook, complaining that younger performers are always selected to perform her hit Christmas Baby, Please Come Home on the annual special instead of her. The special aired on Wednesday.
“Once again I was snubbed by Brad Lachman Productions who produce the Rockefeller Christmas Tree lighting ceremony and instead they book another artist to perform my song 'Christmas Baby, Please Come Home' each year,” she said. “Such an insult and let down!”
Love was not pleased with the artists who got the coveted gig.
“They book these young artists who can't even hit the notes properly and are off-key,” she said. “Makes NO sense!! That's my song and I'm still alive. Show me some respect! My publicist has been trying for over 10 years to lock this performance down for me and they keep saying that I'm not their demo or big enough and would only book me if Bette Midler or Bruce Springsteenwould do it with me.”
This year, Love's hit was performed by Pitch Perfectstar Skylar Astin and Glee's Alex Newell, the co-stars of NBC's Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist.
“This business can be so unfair at times,” Love said. “Don't get me wrong, I'm TRULY blessed for what I have accomplished at 78 years of age, but it's still a constant struggle to stay relevant and convince those who control the industry that I'm worth it.”
Love's Christmas Baby, Please Come Home was released in 1963. She has performed it numerous times for television, including a regular gig on David Letterman's talk show from 1986 to 2014.
On news broadcasts and cable news channels, the company will reduce commercial loads to allow for more programming. On the entertainment front, late night shows as well as unscripted series on Bravo, E! and USA, will all feature extended episodes and bonus content in lieu of some commercial pods.
NBCUniversal will reduce advertising loads across its networks and add more entertainment and news content as the novel coronavirus pandemic continues, and as families quarantine at home.
“Now, people all across America are turning to us more for the content that comforts them and connects them to the outside world,” writes NBCUniversal ad sales and partnerships chairman Linda Yaccarino in a blog post Monday afternoon. “At the same time, some marketers across every industry have asked to pause their advertising plans or shift their messages, and they're looking for ideas, tools, and strategies from their most trusted partners. So, in light of everything we're seeing and hearing, we want to do what's right for our audiences and marketers.”
On the broadcast news shows and the company's cable news channels MSNBC and CNBC, the company will reduce commercial loads to allow for more news and information programming.
On the entertainment front, late night shows The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon, Late Night with Seth Meyers, and Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen now originating from the hosts' homes, as well as unscripted series on Bravo, E! and USA, will all feature extended episodes and bonus content in lieu of some commercial pods.
Some of the company's channels will also launch family movie nights, with sponsored but commercial-free airings of films.
Late last month the advertising research firm Magna Global predicted that the U.S. TV ad market would fall by 13 percent in 2020 due to the fallout from the pandemic, calling the situation “totally unprecedented.” The travel, restaurant and movie sectors in particular have pulled back ad spend.
In addition, NBCUniversal finds itself in the position of having to fill many hours of programming that had been set aside for coverage of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, which have since been postponed until 2021.
Yaccarino also writes that the company will be engaging in outreach to companies and waiving fees “to allow companies to reach their customers directly in their homes and generate much-needed sales.” That will include access to remote production teams, brand assets, talent, translation services, and editing services, which can all be used to create new campaigns even as most people are staying home.
The company also released new research on Monday outlining the increased media consumption during the last few weeks. The research found that digital and linear TV viewing is up, gaming is up significantly, and that streaming services are seeing subscription gains, while...