Crazy Guggenheim

Zany character who appeared weekly on the comedy variety program JACKIE GLEASON AND HIS AMERICAN SCENE MAGAZINE/CBS/1962-66.

A regular segment of this program featured the “Joe the Bartender” sketch in which singer Frank Fontaine played a local pub drunk called “Crazy Guggenheim.”

Plagued with a loud, irritating laugh, Crazy would come from the back of the bar (usually at the request of Joe) to sing a song or to share stories with Mr. Dunahee (an unseen local). Crazy’s only redeeming grace was his beautiful voice. Crazy sang along to tunes from the tavern jukebox.

Note: The Crazy Guggenheim character was based on a real-life friend of Jackie Gleason called “Puke.” Frank Fontaine had previously hosted the New York variety series FRANKIE FONTAINE/SYN/1955.


Born in Philadelphia, Jerome Alphonse Holst worked 30 years as a librarian. He has since retired and lives in Greensboro, North Carolina. Mr. Holst is also the author of the children’s books “Norman the Troll,” "Norman the Troll and the Haunted House," and "Gretchen and the Gremlins." In addition, he penned the fantasy novel “The Adventures of Glinda Gale,” a retelling of “The Wizard of Oz" and the reference text “The Encyclopedia of Movie and TV Insults.” .

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Posted in Comedy, Music

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