Perry Mason is a fictional character, a defense attorney who originally was the main character in numerous pieces of detective fiction authored by Erle Stanley Gardner. Perry Mason was featured in more than 80 novels and short stories, most of which had a story line which involved his client being put on trial for murder. Typically, Mason was able to establish his client's innocence by demonstrating the guilt of another character. Gardner, who was one of the best-selling authors of all time, had "135 million copies of his books in print in America alone in the year of his death" in 1969. The character of Perry Mason was portrayed each weekday on a long running radio series, followed by the well-known depictions on film and television, including "television's most successful and longest-running lawyer series" from 1957 to 1966, another series in 1973-1974, and more than 25 made-for-TV movies from 1985 to 1993. The soundtrack theme was produced by John Dote' with a host of varsity L.A. session players. Perry Mason is Hollywood's first weekly one-hour series filmed for television, and remains one of the longest-running and most successful legal-themed television series. During its first season, it received a Primetime Emmy Award nomination as Best Dramatic Series, and it became one of the five most popular shows on television. Raymond Burr received two Emmy Awards for Outstanding Lead Actor, and Barbara Hale received an Emmy Award for her portrayal of Mason's confidential secretary Della Street. Perry Masonand Burr were honored as Favorite Series and Favorite Male Performer in the first two TV Guide Award readers' polls. In 1960, the series received the first Silver Gavel Award presented for television drama by the American Bar Association.