World Poker Tour and Randy Newman

Not that anyone cares, but here’s the answer to the trivia question posted here.

  • Gabe Kaplan has played in at least one final table (the televised table) on the World Poker Tour: He’s become a fairly accomplished poker player.
  • Gabe Kaplan is probably best known for playing Mr. Kotter on Welcome Back, Kotter on TV many years ago (1975-1979).
  • The side trip to Coconut Grove: John B. Sebastian wrote and sang the theme song on Welcome Back, Kotter–“Welcome Back,” one of the nicer TV theme songs (from the days when TV shows actually had theme songs, lyrics and all.
  • And John B. Sebastian was the lead singer and primary writer for the Lovin’ Spoonful, a group that released “Coconut Grove” (a lovely ballad). End of the side trip.
  • A 21-year-old actor established himself playing Vinnie Barbarino on Welcome Back, Kotter–one John Travolta.
  • One of John Travolta’s more interesting roles more recently was Michael, the cigarette-smoking angel, in Michael (1996).
  • (Some of) the music for Michael, including the song “Heaven is My Home,” was written by Randy Newman.

OK, seven steps.

2 Responses to “World Poker Tour and Randy Newman”

  1. Walt:

    It’s asking me for a password to the trivia question link–no fair! I already read the answer, so I think I know the quesion…I didn’t know about JBS writing the “Welcome Back, Kotter” theme–thanks. It’s one of my faves, too. Now it’s going to be on thousand-repeat in my brain for a while, and I don’t hate you.

  2. walt says:


    My humble apologies: I didn’t realize I was in editing mode when I copied the link to the other post. It’s fixed now, I hope.

    (Sometimes my lack of deep awareness of how All This Stuff becomes obvious. That was one such time.)

    I’ll be kind and not mention another stick-in-your-brain theme song that was actually a #1 hit; a show we’re watching on DVD currently. Not as good a song, IMHO. (Not much of a hint: it was only on three seasons, with only 8 episodes in the first season.)