By Raiza Giorgi
Bob Eubanks knew at a young age that he wanted to be a radio disc jockey, but he didn’t know that not only would his voice and face would become a legendary, and he would get to know one of the most iconic bands in history, The Beatles.
“Working with The Beatles was a chance of a lifetime and I love sharing those memories and tidbits that people might not know like Ringo Starr spent three years in the hospital as a kid because of his appendix and had tuberculosis,” Eubanks said.
He currently presents a show nationwide entitled “Backstage With the Beatles,” telling the unique stories only Eubanks can tell about his Beatle experiences, while tribute band “Ticket to Ride” performs their songs. There will be a “Concert in the Car” version of this show on Oct. 17 at the Ventura County Fairgrounds. True to his game-show roots, Eubanks said there will also be a chance for a guest to play a game to possibly win $100,000.
“The concert in the car show I am really looking forward to, because this pandemic has had us all stuck in the house, and it will be a fun night to come out, listen to some great stories and music and still social distance. The Cash Pyramid game will be such fun too,” Eubanks said.
During the pandemic, the part-time Santa Ynez Valley resident has been laying pretty low but talked to the Star about his rise to fame, love of country music and how he came to the valley.
Eubanks started as one of the top rock ‘n’ roll DJs in Los Angeles at KRLA for seven years. In 1972, he entered the world of country music. For 10 years Eubanks was the exclusive promoter for country legend Merle Haggard. During that time he also managed Dolly Parton and Barbara Mandrell. He also produced shows for The Rolling Stones.
“The wonderful thing I’ve learned over the years is that you can always take your talent and reinvent yourself. I think that’s what gave me success from music to hosting game shows. I used my voice to reinvent myself, and I think the five words “Here they are, The Beatles,” was the best sentence I’ve ever said,” he laughed.
Eubanks was so invested in making sure the first Beatles tour would happen, he took out a loan for $25,000 against his own house to put on their gig at the Hollywood Bowl in 1964.
“The Beatles has just done the Ed Sullivan show earlier that year and were gaining popularity in the States, and another concert producer turned down working with them, so I stepped up,” he said. “I had never produced a concert in my life, but working in my night club with other talent, I thought ‘OK, let’s give it a shot.’ I think I made $4,000 the first year.”
The next year he sold out the Hollywood Bowl for two nights in 1965 and then Dodger Stadium for two nights in 1966.
Eubanks’ career led him from music to hosting “The Newlywed Game” and “Card Sharks.” He also hosted the Emmy Award-winning coverage of the Tournament of Roses Parade for 38 years.
“That has always been one of my favorite days of the year,” he added.
He also said he loved his time up at his place in Santa Ynez Valley, Peppertree Ranch, where he used to host rodeos and art shows. He now is in Thousand Oaks.
“I have always been fascinated with ranch life and we came to the valley 40 years ago on a trip with my first wife,” Eubanks said. “We loved it so much we made it home for many wonderful years and now my kids and grandchildren still enjoy it (the valley).”
For more information on Bob Eubanks and to learn more or get tickets to the show visit https://www.backstagewiththebeatles.com.