The British Invasion had a major effect on American television, and not only from the presence of British bands on the variety shows of the time. In 1964 the up to then popular Sing Along with Mitch, hosted by Mitch Miller, was canceled. In addition to being the show’s host, Mitch Miller was a recording artist and record company executive. Miller had been in charge of Artists and Repertoire at Columbia Records when he passed on the Beatles (after previously passing on Buddy Holly and Elvis Presley) which made fortunes for competing labels.
Another show canceled in 1964 was Hootenanny, which had enjoyed brief popularity during the folk music revival which came to an abrupt end with the onset of the British Invasion. To replace Hootenanny its network, ABC, came up with an entirely new show, which it called Shindig! Initially a half-hour program, in its second season it expanded into an hour each week, split into two shows on Thursday and Saturday nights. The program featured the emerging pop and rock music from both the United States and Great Britain, and frequently broadcast taped segments from London, including from the Beatles.
The show was initially successful, despite facing strong competition from other programs it was scheduled against, which included The Jackie Gleason Show and Daniel Boone. Its early success led competing NBC to launch Hullabaloo. The NBC program featured a different performer as host each week, who would sing one of his or her own hits and introduce other acts which offered both live and taped performances of their songs. Some early episodes were produced in London and hosted by Brian Epstein. The Rolling Stones performed on the show, as did the Yardbirds, the Animals, and Marianne Faithful.
Dick Clark’s program was named American Bandstand, but it became another stage for bands of the British Invasion and for their records. New releases were played and rated on the show and many British Invasion bands performed or provided clips to be shown on the program. American Bandstand predated the British Invasion by many years, and lasted many years after the invasion was over, but during its peak years of 1964-66 the music featured on the show was heavily from British bands, since that was what the teens in the audience wanted to hear.
Many of the acts of the British Invasion found welcome on regional talk shows such as The Mike Douglas Show, which originated in Cleveland. The Rolling Stones, The Kinks, and others performed on the show, which much later interviewed all of the members of the Beatles other than Paul McCartney following their breakup. Most of the variety programs of the time featured acts of the British Invasion, including Hollywood Palace, in which the show’s host Dean Martin insulted the Rolling Stones while introducing them, and again after their performance.