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A CANDID CONVERSATION WITH JUST ABOUT EVERYBODY WHO WAS ANYBODY ABOUT JUST ABOUT ANYTHING
Sometimes witty, often
controversial but usually relevant the Playboy Interview has become as much an integral part of the magazine as any other content. Even today interviews conducted over 45 years ago still retain that relevance, a testament to the interview subjects chosen.
It was 1962, and Hugh Hefner was thinking of a new feature for his eight-year-old PLAYBOY magazine. Sifting through unpublished material that editorial had obliged him with a partial manuscript, in which a fledgling journalist named Alex Haley had interviewed jazz trumpeter Miles Davis, caught his interest.
The musician spoke less of blue notes than of discord between blacks and whites, and Hef found his words compelling. Haley was dispatched to question Davis further, and when the completed interview appeared in September 1962, it launched what would become an institution: the Playboy Interview.
In the ensuing decades, "candid conversations" with more than 500 notable personalities, box office stars, sporting champs, sporting chumps, heads of state, wannabe heads of state, a Princess, a Prince, an assassin, scholars and scoundrels have all been published. Eminent journalists who have conducted them include Nat Hentoff, Kenneth Tynan, Tom Wicker, Alvin Toffler and Mike Wallace.