Winner 1990

American Masters: John Hammond: From Bessie Smith to Bruce Springsteen

American Masters, Thirteen/WNET, New York, New York, CBS Music Video Enterprises

American Masters has brought millions of Americans an engaging look at John Hammond, described as “talent scout, record producer, civil rights activist, jazz critic and social commentator” in an hour-long program that instantly captures the viewer’s attention. Hammond’s story is told largely through the music he helped bring to the world’s attention but it is also told by the presence of the diverse American music legends who played a part: Billie Holiday, Count Basie, Bob Dylan, Aretha Franklin, Bruce Springsteen, just to name a few. It took a lot of people to make a production this outstanding: Susan Lacy, Jerry Durkin and Debbie Newman served as Executive Producers; Hart Perry, Alan Ramer and Charles M. Benanty were Producers; Diane Dufault was Supervising Producer; Gary Giddins was the writer; Ossie Davis narrated and John Hammond was the featured personality. The Peabody Board also acknowledges the role played by the John Hammond Archive Partnership, created by Alan Ramer, the Executive Producer Lou Reda and Legal Advisor William Krasilovsky. This was a co-production of WNET/Thirteen, New York and CBS Music Video Enterprises in association with the John Hammond Archive Partnership and American Masters.


Executive Producer: Susan Lacy, Jerry Durkin, Debbie Newman. Producer: Diane Dufault. Host: John Hammond. Director: Hart Perry. Writer: Gary Giddins.