America's Talking was an American cable television channel focused mainly on talk based programming, created by NBC and spun off from economic channel CNBC, that was launched on July 4th 1994 and replaced on July 15th, 1996. The headquarters were based in an office building in Fort Lee, New Jersey, 2 floors below CNBC's original studios, on Fletcher Avenue. The channel's space was used to launch MSNBC after it was closed down.
The programming was mainly focused on low-budget talk shows, and included the following lineup:
- America's Talking A.M. - A morning talk show, hosted by Steve Doocy and Kai Kim, with Tony Morelli as "the Prodigy Guy".
- Am I Nuts? - (later named State of Mind) hosted by Psychologist Bernie Katz and Behavioral Therapist Cynthia Richmond.
- What's New? - The latest hot gadgets, hosted by Mike Jerrick and later Brian Tracey.
- Break A Leg with Bill McCuddy - Mid-afternoon chatfest hosted by the winner of a CNBC-sponsored talent contest, Bill McCuddy. Featured celebrities and musical acts.
- Alive and Wellness - Healthy living by holistic methods, hosted by Carol Martin.
- Ask E. Jean - A call-in advice show hosted by writer E. Jean Carroll.
- Have a Heart - A talk/news show discussing the brighter side of the news and show-arranged charitable situations, hosted by Lu Hanessian.
- Pork - A political talk show focusing on government waste hosted by John David Klein. The executive producers were Robin Gellman and Dennis Sullivan.
- AT In-Depth - A two-hour news/talk show focusing on the day's top stories, co-hosted by Terry Anzur in Fort Lee and Chris Matthews in Washington. Matthews later got his own show (see below) and the show became "In Depth Coast to Coast" with Anzur in Burbank, CA, and John Gibson in Fort Lee.
- Straight Forward - A celebrity hour-long talk show, hosted by the President of the network, Roger Ailes.
- Bugged! - A comedic look at what bugs people, hosted by Brian O'Connor with Bill Gulino
- R&R with Roger Rose - A late-night themed talk show featuring the latest music and celebrities
- After Hours - This show replaced "R&R", was basically the same format, hosted by Brian Tracy and Bill Gulino. The show was eventually moved over to CNBC where it was hosted by Mike Jerrick.
- Politics with Chris Matthews - This show is the only show from America's Talking still on the air (as of 2014). After moving over to CNBC during the rampdown of America's Talking, the show was renamed Hardball with Chris Matthews and eventually moved to MSNBC, where it still airs nightly at 7 p.m.
- Cable Crossings-A minute-long serial that aired between programs, written by Marv Himelfarb, featuring Brian Fraley Music written by Bill Gulino
While America's Talking had something of a cult following, it was not successful in the ratings and was picked up by few cable providers. In January 1996, NBC announced plans to partner with Microsoft to launch MSNBC on cable and online with the satellite transponder that America's Talking occupied, effectively ending the life of the network. America's Talking officially signed off on July 15, 1996, after Ailes had departed NBC and been hired by Rupert Murdoch to launch the Fox News Channel for News Corporation, and was replaced at 9 a.m. by MSNBC Live, hosted by Jodi Applegate.