Posts Tagged ‘Comedy’


‘Cocumentary’: Interviewing Rich Vos and Bonnie McFarlane

August 10, 2014

I’ve spent a lot of time with husband and wife comedians Rich Vos and Bonnie McFarlane lately. Three hours for an interview at their Hillsborough, New Jersey home…and since then countless more hours in editing suites screening the footage and now in extensive sessions with my video editor.

We finished the piece today and it will air August 16th and 17th on News 12 New Jersey at 11 AM, 1:30 PM and 3:30 PM both days.

Without a doubt, in my nine (incredible) years of hosting “ON THE SCENE” and interviewing artists in every possible genre, this is the funniest interview we have ever aired. These two stick it to each other…a constant roast Bonnie says…but there is a chemistry and charm between them that is endearing.

Their new film (they call it a cocumentary…a comedy/documentary) called “Women Aren’t Funny” will be released on iTunes on August 26th.  The title is meant to be sarcastic according to Bonnie. She directed the movie after getting fed up with people who debate whether female comedians are as funny as their male counterparts.

Follow me on Twitter @johnbathkelive for continuous news about “ON THE SCENE,” who we’re interviewing and the dates these entertainment specials air.


ON THE SCENE Encore: Jim Breuer, David Benoit

January 4, 2014

This weekend is your chance to see the most surprising interview with comedian Jim Breuer. He and I sat down at the South Orange Performing Arts Center in New Jersey late last year for this interview. I asked him about his wife’s life altering battle with breast cancer, and about his caregiver relationship with is 90 year old father. What Breuer has to say will be enlightening not only to his fans, but to anyone dealing with these issues in their own family.

And composer David Benoit and I discuss his year of performing and composing music for “Peanuts.” Charlie Brown is who he saw when he looked in the mirror as a kid and he grew up to not only play that iconic music from the tv specials, but to become a “Peanuts” composer himself.

And, see who made our “Favorites of 2013” flashback.

Tune in News 12 New Jersey this Saturday and Sunday, 11 AM, 1:30 PM, and 3:30 PM. This is an encore of a program that initially aired last month and it’s the final time this episode will run. So don’t miss out!  Check back here on the blog for news or links when certain segments are posted online.


ON THE SCENE Best Of…Ready To Roll

December 18, 2012

Two days, holed up in a dark editing booth and now ON THE SCENE the Best Of 2012 show is ready to see the light of day.

We cut and culled until we made it to seven of our favorite artists featured in our show during 2012. And we took the very best excepts from each of those interviews and put them in this year-end special.

With one exception: Bernadette Peters. A good portion of my original interview with her this fall never aired and so a brand new piece with her is in this show.

So tune in News 12 New Jersey this Saturday and Sunday, December 22nd and 23rd at 11AM, 1:30PM and 3:30PM each day.  The show includes Joe Pantoliano, Peter Max, Chris Botti, Lewis Black, Jim Norton, and Rob McClure who stars at Charlie Chaplin in “Chaplin” the Broadway musical.


ON THE SCENE: Black, Botti, McClure: All Star Line Up

October 13, 2012

If you’re looking to find ON THE SCENE this weekend on News 12 New Jersey, remember the times are 8:30am, 11:30am and 4:30pm Saturday and Sunday.

The line-up is tremendous with interviews with three very different entertainers. Viewers are seeing a different side of Lewis Black, famous for his rants on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. In my interview he talks about the break up with a girlfriend  that prompted him to write the play, “One Slight Hitch,” now being performed at George Street Playhouse in New Brunswick, New Jersey.  And I ask him about the smallest audience he ever played to…one Christmas Eve in Anchorage. Hilarious story.

This is my second interview with musician Chris Botti. We picked up where we left off three years ago during our first interview. He is a driven, intense and hugely talented artist and we talk a lot his very focused life.

And Rob McClure who stars as Charlie Chaplin on Broadway in “Chaplin The Musical” gave me a tour of his dressing room at the Barrymore Theatre which is immersed in everything Chaplin. Critics panned the show but praised McClure’s performance. I agree he is a pleasure to watch and has devoted himself to this role.



Lewis Black, Chris Botti and Chaplin On Broadway..This Weekend

October 9, 2012

A new ON THE SCENE will be on this weekend and it includes my interviews with comedian Lewis Black whose play “One Slight Hitch” just opened at George Street Playhouse.  Along with musician Chris Botti and Rob McClure who plays silent movie legend Charlie Chaplin in the Broadway musical, “Chaplin.”

It’s an eclectic mix of extraordinary talent so tune in News 12 New Jersey this Saturday and Sunday October 13th and 14th at 8:30 am, 11:30 am and 4:30 pm each day.


Encore with Comedian Jim Norton And The Springsteen Exhibit

July 25, 2012

This weekend there’s an encore ON THE SCENE airing on News 12 New Jersey at 8:30 AM, 11:30 AM and 4:30PM.

Viewers and my colleagues alike were surprised by my interview with comedian Jim Norton, best known for appearing on the Opie And Anthony radio show.  Some of them are loyal Norton fans and they told me they learned about him from this interview than any other they’ve seen.  It’s one of my all time favorite interviews.

And Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band fans have another chance to see our tour of the Springsteen exhibit at the Constitution Center in Philadelphia..”From Asbury Park To The Promised Land: The Life And Music Of Bruce Springsteen.”

I’ll post more about this encore ON THE SCENE as we get closer to the weekend but mark your calendars and tune in this is probably the last time this episode will air.




Three Spins of ON THE SCENE Sunday With Jim Norton

May 20, 2012

Thanks, the blog is really active this weekend. I see from the list of searches a lot of you are looking me up online because of my interview with Gloria Gaynor on the death of Donna Summer and also those of you wanting to know more about my ON THE SCENE interview with comedian Jim Norton and also the segment on the Bruce Springsteen exhibit.

The show runs again Sunday 8:30 AM, 11:30 AM and 4:30 PM.

Please check the past couple of blog posts for some behind the scenes info on my Norton interview. I watched it again today along with a lot of you and I have to say how great it is to interview comedians and how refreshing when somebody will talk about anything and own their feelings.

The Norton interview will be posted online in a couple of weeks.


Tweet You Tweet Me

May 15, 2012

If you haven’t checked in lately or this is your first time, I’m now on Twitter at!/JohnBathkeLive so hit me up!  Follow me sounds sooo pretentious.

It’s a great way to see what I’m up to more immediately and I get to crack a few jokes.  So I like it.

Also, ON THE SCENE featuring my interview with comedian Jim Norton and our trip to the exhibit Asbury Park To The Promised Land: The Life And Music Of Bruce Springsteen gets an encore spin at 8:30 AM, 11:30 AM and 4:30 PM Saturday and Sunday, May 19th and 20th on News 12 New Jersey.

This Jim Norton interview is compelling and if you’re local please watch because fans of his told me how they’ve never seen this side of him before and found it fascinating.


ON THE SCENE Encore: Comedian Jim Norton, Springsteen Exhibit

May 11, 2012

Just want to let you know there’ll be an encore of the ON THE SCENE episode featuring comedian Jim Norton and my visit to the Springsteen exhibit at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia.

Tune in May 19th, 20th at 8:30 AM, 11:30 AM or 4:30 PM on News 12 New Jersey.


For Your Viewing Pleasure…TV Schedule for ON THE SCENE

September 16, 2011

A reminder to those of you who were disappointed that ON THE SCENE needed to be rescheduled due to special Hurricane Irene coverage a couple weeks ago tune in this weekend.

Barring a natural disaster or threat to life, limb and the pursuit of happiness, we’ll be on Saturday and Sunday, September 17th and 18th at 8:30 AM, 11 AM, and 2  PM each day with interviews with Rita Rudner, Richard Belzer and dance legend Judith Jamison of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. See you there.