DAVE WILSON: The idea of having part of the audience sitting around home base was not that new. I'm sure that kind of thing had been done many times. But the idea of putting an audience in front of those side stages was a little different. It worked well because it gave performers more of an intimate feeling of audience, that they were performing not just for cameras but for a live audience.
HOWARD SHORE: It's true - there is no theme song for Saturday Night Live in the traditional sense. This is inherent in the nature of the show. I wanted the theme music for the show to have an improvisational feel, like the show itself, and I wanted it to grow and change from year to year. And that's why when I listen to the show now after twenty-five, twenty-six years, it still sounds fresh to me and sort of classic, and it wouldn't have if you kept hearing the same hummable melody over and over. Because the nature of the music on the show was interplay between the ten musicians, which is completely different than what you have in a big band or the Carson sound, which is very formalized arrangements written very specifically, and everybody plays what is written on the page. So with the ten musicians I wanted to create interplay like jazz musicians have amongst themselves, and R&B musicians.
It's the same thing as the cast. You have to think of the musicians in the band the same as you think of the cast and how they would play off each other and kind of riff off each other. That was the same feeling that I wanted to create in the music. So it had to have an improvisational nature. The saxophone was just a thing that I loved, and I am a saxophone player, so it was inherent in my soul that it be the predominant voice. Instead of a band playing a piece with a melody, it was an improvisation by a great blues soloist.
BRAD GREY, Manager: Bernie was there for the first dress rehearsal. He looked out and he saw the band rehearsing. And it was getting close to starting time. So he turned to Lorne and he said, "Hey, Lorne, you know the band doesn't have their tuxedos on yet. Better get them into wardrobe." That always made me laugh, because it was so honest of Bernie. Tuxedos! And that's sort of, I guess, the merging of two generations.
DICK EBERSOL: Lorne's telling me every day that Chevy's got this great idea to open every show with a fall, and I am absolutely opposed. But Chevy was the only one who was funny and could write television for television. We were reading scripts in those early days where people would have a three-or four-minute sketch take place on five sets, and it didn't take a real scholar to know you couldn't do that if we were going to do a live television show in a box the size of 8H.
DAVE WILSON: Many of them had written for magazines or the National Lampoon Radio Hour or that kind of thing, so it wasn't as if they were brandnew to writing, it's just that they weren't familiar with the medium of television. So of course we'd always go through things where you'd read their script and it says, "We start with a flooded studio." And you'd say, "Well, you better rethink that."