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Mobituaries with Mo Rocca

Mobituaries with Mo Rocca

Author: CBS News, Inc.

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Mo Rocca has always loved obituaries. In season 1 of Mobituaries he introduces listeners to the people who have long intrigued him—from the 20th century’s greatest entertainer … to the Civil Rights pioneer who is completely forgotten … to sitcom characters gone all too soon. Even if you know the names, you’ve never understood why they matter…until now. And if you enjoy these episodes, look for more stories of great lives worth reliving when Mobituaries returns for season 2 in fall 2019.
22 Episodes
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For a few decades the station wagon was as central to the American Dream as the white picket fence and the basketball hoop in the driveway. It was the quintessential family car. And really, who didn’t want to ride in the “way back”? This special episode comes from the audiobook edition of MOBITUARIES. You can learn more here: http://bit.ly/MoAudio.
Anna May Wong wasn't supposed to be in the movies. Her laundryman father was dead set against it. And Hollywood preferred white actors in "yellow face" for Asian characters. But Wong knew what she wanted. With her talent, beauty and tenacity, she ran a gauntlet of social and legal obstacles to become Hollywood's very first Chinese-American star. Mo talks with comedian Margaret Cho, actress Rosalind Chao and best-selling author Lisa See about the woman who is finally getting her due.
Mobituaries LIVE!

Mobituaries LIVE!

2020-01-1730:4232

In a Mobits first, Mo takes the show on the road! Mo shares his love of obituaries; investigates why we confuse certain dead celebrities; and interviews former New York Times obituary writer Margalit Fox about what it's like to write about the dead for a living. This episode was recorded in Asbury Park, NJ and Fairfield, CT.
Fred Armisen joins Mo to pay tribute to legendary bandleader and TV host, Lawrence Welk. Welk was another victim of television's Rural Purge of the early 1970s, when his long running musical variety show was canceled by ABC after his audience was deemed too old. But Welk did not go quietly. He defied the critics, bringing his show back to life on his own terms - and reaching an even wider audience.
In December of 1993, Laura Branigan called into Ernie Manouse's Chicago-based radio show and sang O Holy Night a capella. Technically the recording isn't perfect, but Laura's pitch is. And her spirit shines through. We thank Ernie, now an award-winning host with Houston Public Media, for allowing us to play it for you here. And we wish you all a Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday.
Between 1854 and 1929, 250,000 orphans - at peril in the dangerous, overcrowded streets of New York - were placed on trains and sent west to live with new families. A desperate solution to a desperate problem, some of the stories turned out well and some far from well. The bond between the riders lives on in their descendants, many of whom continue to search for answers about their ancestry. Mo talks to the daughter of a rider, plumbs the CBS News archives for voices of the riders themselves, and tracks down the last survivor.
The St. Louis Blues hockey team had the worst record in the NHL in January 2019, before deciding to adopt the 1982 hit song Gloria as their anthem. They ended up winning the Stanley Cup. But many of their fans didn't even know that the woman who sang that song had died back in 2004. Mo talks to Laura Branigan's brother, her high school best friend, songwriter Diane Warren (who wrote her first hit song for Branigan) and attends a reunion of fans to tell the poignant story of an undersung pop star whose voice lives on.
In the early 1970's, CBS axed its slate of hit country-themed sitcoms. The Beverly Hillbillies, Green Acres, and Petticoat Junction were just three of the shows that bought the farm. Mo talks to Linda Henning (star of Petticoat Junction), author Sara Eskridge and TV critic Alan Sepinwall about the sitcom slaughter.
During the 1870s, more than a dozen African American men, many of whom had been born into slavery, were elected to the U.S. Congress. These political pioneers symbolized the sky high hopes of millions of former slaves during the years right after the Civil War. It was a period that ended all too quickly. But it happened. Mo talks to Professor Henry Louis Gates, Reconstruction historian Eric Foner, and a descendant of one of the legendary lawmakers.
Thomas Paine wrote Common Sense, the pamphlet that inspired the American Revolution. So why did only six people show up at his funeral? Mo finds out why this essential Founding Father has never gotten his due - and, with the help of a Tony nominated Broadway songwriting team and The Daily Show's Lewis Black, stages a rollicking memorial service for Paine on the spot where he dropped dead.
Marlene Dietrich cemented her status as a Hollywood legend with a series of iconic performances that flouted traditional women's roles and ignited the screen. But it's her passionate support for the United States, her adopted homeland, and the troops fighting in World War II that led Hitler to label her a traitor to the "Fatherland." When she could have enjoyed the indulgences of fame, she risked everything. This special episode comes from the audiobook edition of MOBITUARIES. You can learn more here: http://bit.ly/MoAudio.
America has a long tradition of unruly presidential brothers, none more famous than Billy Carter. He became so well-known for his antics, there was even a brand of beer named for him. Mo speaks to President Jimmy Carter and Billy's widow and six children about the surprisingly complicated man behind the caricature.
CBS Sunday Morning correspondent and humorist Mo Rocca returns with more stories about the people and things that have long fascinated him and, yes, they’re all still dead. From the unruly presidential brother with his own beer to a 1980’s pop song that brought glory to a 2019 sports team, here’s a sneak peek at what to expect from the new season of Mobituaries.
The legendary rivalry between college football powerhouses Auburn and University of Alabama turned ugly with the 2011 poisoning of two beloved oak trees on Auburn's campus. Mo explores the history behind the rivalry and the line between fandom and fanaticism.Learn more about the Mobituaries book: http://bit.ly/MobituariesBook
Many of us have seen pictures of the original "Siamese Twins" Chang and Eng. But their story is so much more than a medical case study. Mo travels to Mount Airy, North Carolina - the inspiration for Andy Griffith's Mayberry and the real life home of the conjoined twins - to join the many descendants of Chang and Eng for their annual family reunion.Learn more about the Mobituaries book: http://bit.ly/MobituariesBook
Mo welcomes his friend Michael Ian Black – comedian, author, podcaster, and, as it turns out, Neanderthal (we’ll explain). Mo talks to Michael and the world’s leading researchers about why our extinct human cousins Neanderthals have gotten such a bad rap for so many many years, and how we’re learning more about how close we really were. Oh, Mo also talks to the guy who played Cha-ka on the 70s kids show Land of the Lost.Learn more about the Mobituaries book: http://bit.ly/MobituariesBook
From the age of three Sammy Davis, Jr. did it all better than anyone else - singing, dancing, acting, even gun spinning. Mo talks to friends and family about what drove him to keep performing, even after the car crash that nearly killed him. Featuring Carol Burnett, Chita Rivera, Kim Novak, Dionne Warwick and more.Learn more about the Mobituaries book: http://bit.ly/MobituariesBook
There were other stars as big as Audrey Hepburn, some even bigger. (Ahem, Katharine Hepburn?) So why is it that more than 25 years after her death her image still captivates us and her name trends regularly on social media? Mo explores why the attachment to Audrey is still so personal for so many people.Learn more about the Mobituaries book: http://bit.ly/MobituariesBook
The Forgotten Forerunners

The Forgotten Forerunners

2019-01-3144:0128

Mo tells the stories of three remarkable people who changed history - but whose names you've probably never heard. They are the pioneers before the pioneers. Before Rosa Parks, there was Elizabeth Jennings. Before Jackie Robinson, there was Moses Fleetwood Walker. And then there's Lois Weber, the woman who ruled Hollywood 100 years ago.Learn more about the Mobituaries book: http://bit.ly/MobituariesBook
Characters on sitcoms aren't supposed to die. So when they do, it's never less than weird. Mo examines some of the most infamous sitcom deaths and disappearances with Henry Winkler, Sandy Duncan and Alan Sepinwall.Learn more about the Mobituaries book: http://bit.ly/MobituariesBook
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Comments (255)

Yvonne Alley

Amazing look at what could have been a turning point in US history, but for racist Southerners. well worth a listen. Indeed a movie needs to be made!

Jul 1st
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DD

are there going to be any more episodes?

Jun 21st
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Mary McKinney

Totally love every single episode. Listen while I workout and it helps me keep going. Awesome story telling!!

Jun 4th
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Jennifer Couch

Awesome awesome awesome!!!!!

May 11th
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Arielle Niss

Love this show. We need more, Mo! Are there more episodes coming soon?

May 8th
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Adam Stryker

One of the best podcasts out there! His book makes a great gift too. I've been following Mo from Daily Show, to CBS Sunday Morning to Mobituaries. He's a great journalist and humorist.

May 8th
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Z Mac

i just love love love your work, Mo!

Apr 22nd
Reply (1)

Angie Schauseil

Just started listening to Mobituaries during the stay-at-home for COVID19. I always loved Mo Rocca's stories on CBS Sunday Morning. I have been wanting to listen to his podcast shows, but never took the time till now. I am so glad I did 🥰. I absolutely love his podcasts. Each one is as fascinating as the last. I love his story-telling ability and how he makes the subject(s) of each one seem so intimate. I feel as though he gives his listeners the story behind the story. Will continue to be a faithful listener.

Apr 7th
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Nick Cabutto

not a big podcast fan but mo rocca is good. good stories thanks

Mar 28th
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Pam arvik

This brought back so many memories of my grandmother. Sat night was Lawrence Welk. I forgot I knew so much about the show!

Mar 10th
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Linda Buchheim Tadir

Hi. Love the podcast. When's the next episode... 👍

Mar 4th
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Jerolyn Barbee

Mo-thanks for doing this! I work for the National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center in Wilberforce Ohio so I am a history geek. Great connection to the unknown stories we like to tell. Here's someone you should check out...Col. Charles Young. He was the highest ranking African American soldier between WWI and WWII. His story would be a great subject for your podcast.

Feb 27th
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William Qualle

great stories. really entertaining THANKS MO

Feb 23rd
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Maria Malvar

Love, love, love...❤️❤️

Feb 20th
Reply

Nick Cabutto

I'm new to popcast but I'm liking Mobituaries. very entertaining

Feb 16th
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C Aguilera

love this podcats, thanks Mo 😊

Feb 12th
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Austin Peek

The MO ya KNOW.

Feb 11th
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Rhonda F.

I never knew the history of these twins and just loved hearing about their American life. Great podcast!

Feb 7th
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Rhonda F.

This is an awesome podcast! I remember my parents watching The Lawrence Welk Show and I liked the music! I had forgotten about the Lennon Sisters until now, thanks for the reminder. Even though the show was kind of corny I loved Mr. Welk and his accent and most of all his "a one and a two and....."

Feb 7th
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Rhonda F.

An absolutely hilarious story of different sitcom deaths. I nearly choked at the end laughing about who Mo would have wanted to replace him on Law and Order- Sandy Duncan!

Feb 2nd
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