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Irving Cohen

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IrvingCohen

Irving Cohen is an elderly, somewhat embittered Tin Pan Alley songwriter played by Martin Short on SCTV. Cohen would appear on talk shows and reminisce about his time writing songs for Al Jolson. Cohen would improvise songs on the spot, and instruct the pianist to "Give me a C, a bouncy C." Short played Cohen in the closing scene of Muppets Tonight episode 110, sitting in the nursing home with Statler and Waldorf.

The character was loosely based on songwriter Irving Caesar, who wrote the lyrics for "Swanee" and would tell stories about Jolson on talk shows, such as The Joe Franklin Show. When Short joined the cast of Saturday Night Live, he took Cohen with him, appearing at one point in a spoof of The Joe Franklin Show. The character was also seen on Primetime Glick (where he served as executive producer), and various stage shows and specials (including Concert for the North Americas and The Show Formerly Known as the Martin Short Show).

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