Paul Shaffer May Be Leaving Letterman When His Contract Is Up

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Paul Shaffer May Be Leaving Letterman When His Contract Is Up

By Dustin Rowles | Trade News | October 15, 2012 | Comments ()


This is what we call in the blogging business: Unnecessary Monday morning alarmism. It's how we get your heart pumping, although I suspect for many of you, this news will earn little more than a shrug. But here it is: Paul Shaffer, "The Late Show's" musical director, told TV Guide Canada that he may leave the late night talk show after his contract is up in 2014.

"We've been on 30 years so now we've got another two years ... I'm going to be certainly ready to lie down after that, take a nap," he says. "But once again, life is nutty - anything can happen. I've been so lucky and blessed to be working this long in show business. And whatever happens now is just gravy to me."

The reason why this is alarmist is because, Shaffer may not be the only one leaving in 2014. Letterman will be 67 in 2014, and there's the possibility that he may be leaving then, as well. My guess is also that, if Letterman does stay, any contract he signs will be short, and that it wouldn't be that difficult to convince Shaffer to stay. It's been 30 years, what's one more, right?

Besides, to most people, especially those who don't understand Shaffer's contributions to music -- he was the musical director for The Blues Brothers and he wrote the song, "It's Raining Men," and he's also the musical director for the Rock n' Roll Hall of Fame -- Shaffer just the annoying sidekick who obnoxiously repeats Dave's punchlines. A lot of folks have an irrational hatred of Shaffer that I don't quite understand given how mild-mannered and Canadian he is.

Anyway, my guess is that, if Shaffer leaves, Dave leaves. He's too old to bother starting all over with a new musical director.

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • ,

    "the musical director for the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame"

    Do you have anything to do with keeping KISS out, Paul? DO YOU? Because if you do, you have a lot to answer for.


  • pawlit

    More like, to be thanked for.
    KISS is not a band, it's a vehicle of selling merchandise.

  • lowercase_ryan

    Did he steal those glasses from The Riddler?

  • Frank Berrodin

    Get Louie to replace Dave!

  • sean

    No, Viacom will move Jon Stewart to that job.

  • e jerry powell

    Meh. I remember Shaffer best for his sidework as Gilda Radner's musical director.

    And I tend to give more credit for "It's Raining Men" to the gay guy Shaffer worked with, Paul Jabara (also known for Donna Summer's "Last Dance," Barbra Streisand's "The Main Event," and the duet "No More Tears" for Streisand and Summer).

  • Pants-are-a-must

    And then CBS desperately tries the hard sell on Craig Ferguson, who wants nothing to do with Letterman's time slot.

    (mind you, I think a lot of people who point out that Ferguson would be right in thinking this, pointing to Conan as an example of a Late Late host who isn't quite the stuff of Late, aren't quite correct. I actually think Ferguson is just about the right material for it, puppets or no puppets)

  • sjfromsj

    Exactly. Ferguson's schtick is how no one cares about his time slot so he can do whatever he wants (though the recent addition of the network exec has been great), and he would lose that. He's way too punk rock to sell out for the key time slot.

  • bonerghost

    I used to work across the street from the Ed Sullivan Theater... and every time I saw Paul during the day, he would smile and say hello. Didn't know me, saw me often enough to know I wasn't a tourist and had no reason to be friendly other than to be friendly. He's as nice as you think he is... which is saying a lot, being a showbiz lifer. Ease the hate.

  • zeke_the_pig

    What better reason to resurrect the late, great Warren Zevon...

  • ,

    If only ...

    And: Fuck cancer.

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