When Shirley Partridge goes into her garage to find out what all the noise is about, she discovers her children: Keith, Laurie, Danny, Chris and Tracy warming up with a song which they have collectively written. In need of a lead soprano to round out the harmony, the young Partridges volunteer their mom and, to the whole family's surprise, the song sounds alright! As a matter of fact, it sounds terrific! On his own initiative, Danny Partridge tape records their terrific tune and seeks out a business manager's ear. After trailing a big-time manager (Reuben Kincaid) all day, he finally gets him to listen to the tape by slipping it under the door of a bathroom stall. Reuben is reluctant to promise too much, but he promises the Partridges he'll give their song a fair "hearing." Within weeks, the garage inspired song becomes an instant hit and overnight the Partridges are in demand throughout the country.

Shirley Partridge is uncertain how to adjust to their sudden success. A recent widow, she could certainly use the money. She decides that she's going to take her whole family on the publicity tour. They repaint an old school bus (which she almost knows how to drive) and thus, the Partridge Family begins to ride the road to success! Their first stop: Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas. After an introduction by Johnny Cash, Shirley is somewhat shocked to find all five kids suffering from a bad case of stage fright. She coaxes her children out of their silent trance by having them pretend to be back home in the garage. They finally begin to play and eventually earn a standing ovation. They've come a long way from their garage!

"Let The Good Times In," music and lyrics by Carol Bayer and Neil Sedaka (Unreleased on commercial LP)
"Together," music and lyrics by Shorty Rogers and Kelly Gordon (Unreleased on commercial LP)

Shirley Partridge --------------------------------- Shirley Jones
Keith Partridge ----------------------------------- David Cassidy
Laurie Partridge ---------------------------------- Susan Dey
Danny Partridge ---------------------------------- Danny Bonaduce
Chris Partridge ----------------------------------- Jeremy Gelbwaks
Tracy Partridge ----------------------------------- Suzanne Crough
Reuben Kincaid ----------------------------------- Dave Madden

Guest Cast:
Club Manager ------------------------------------ William Wintersole
Girl Drummer ------------------------------------- Debra Pearce
Man ---------------------------------------------- Gordon Jump
Woman ------------------------------------------- Ceil Cabot
Desk Clerk --------------------------------------- Hal Taggert
Airport Clerk ------------------------------------- Felton Perry
Johnny Cash -------------------------------------- Himself

Tube Trivia:
- William Wintersole played Dr. Kessler in Episode 16.
- Gordon Jump is best known for playing Mr. Carlson on "WKRP in Cincinnati." He holds the record for most guest appearances on "The Partridge Family." He also appeared in Episodes 34, 47, 56, 62, 78, and 87.
- Director Jerry Paris is best known for playing Jerry Helper on "The Dick Van Dyke Show." He has also directed episodes of "The Mary Tyler Moore Show," Happy Days," and "Mork & Mindy."
- The original title for the series was, "Family Business."
- The song, "What A Day" was filmed for the pilot, but edited out of both versions. It was never released on a commercial LP.
- Neither David Cassidy nor Shirley Jones sung in the pilot episode songs.
- The pilot actually used the "I Dream of Jeannie" home and driveway. They didn't use their regular facade until the second episode. The interiors were almost completely backwards in design to what was later used.
- The familiar theme song, "When We're Singing," with animated partridges didn't start until the second episode. The pilot used concert footage and the song, "Together."
- The school bus used was a 1957 Chevrolet "Superior" round top bus. It frequently broke down and had to be pushed into scenes rather than driven. And yes, that was actually Shirley Jones driving down Hollywood Boulevard!
- "I Think I Love You," released  in August, 1970, was already climbing the charts when the series premiered. It debuted on the Billboard charts on October 10th and hit Number 1 on November 21st.
- To read the TV Guide Premiere article, click here!
- To read our exclusive interview with series creator Bernard Slade, visit the People and Places section of the website!

More Trivia
The sponsors of the pilot episode of the Partridge Family were: 
Cover Girl Medicated Make-up - with Cybil Sheppard    
Coffee Mate
Carnation Instant Breakfast - Voice over by Dave Madden
1 A Day Vitamins
Alka Seltzer - with a Thanksgiving Day Theme
Super Sheer Cover Girl - with teen model Susie Blakely

In the pilot, as originally filmed:
  The Partridge family lived in Ohio.  
    Shirley's name was Connie.
    Laurie mentioned her father, reminding Shirley of how he used to drink too much during the holidays. 
    Jack Cassidy made an appearance as Connie's love interest, Mark.

Oops!: Twice, there is the implication that there are only five members in the family: 1. Keith tells Shirley they need her to sing because the arrangement is written for five voices.  2. In Las Vegas, when the kids freeze, Shirley tells them to close their eyes and think of "just the five of us" rehearsing in the garage.

Return to Episode Guide

Return to Season 1

On to Episode 2