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Showing posts with the label old time radio

Brief History of Old Time Radio

Old-time radio , also known as the Golden Age of Radio, refers to the era of radio broadcasting that lasted from the 1920s to the 1950s. During this time, radio was the primary source of entertainment and information for millions of people around the world. It was an innovative and transformative technology that changed the way people lived and communicated. Radio broadcasting began in the early 20th century with a handful of experimental stations. However, it wasn’t until the 1920s that commercial radio broadcasting took off in the United States. Radio stations sprang up all over the country, and by the mid-1920s, there were hundreds of stations nationwide. Radio offered a new form of entertainment, allowing people to hear live music , drama, comedy , and news from the comfort of their homes. One of the most popular programs of the Golden Age of Radio was the soap opera. These melodramatic serialized dramas were broadcast daily and became a staple of radio programming. They were follo

Heartbeat of Broadway

As I listen to the thousands and thousands of shows, occasionally, I come across a fantastic new show out of the blue, that you didn't know existed. I am talking of Heartbeat of Broadway on Random Rarities Volume 4 - each a superb documentary on then (and still) Broadway musicals. A pity there are not more than the four available. If only we could go back in time... Thanks Old Time Radio !

Dark Venture article from January 1946

HERE IS A moment in the life of every person when he is on the verge of entering upon a ‘dark venture’ _a time when he hovers on the brink of committing a crime. Most of us never do it. ‘ Dark Venture ’ tells the stories of those who do.” This is producer Leonard Reeg’s explanation of the basic idea behind the weekly thrill series heard Each Tuesday evening over American, Produced by Reeg, narrated by scripters as Larry Marcus, Bob Light and Dwight Hauser, with music by Dean Fossler, “Dark Venture” offers realistic, psychological studies of me and women with troubled minds who choose the hard way, the fast way, the wrong way, to solve their problems. The series was conceived by J. Donald Wilson who, incidentally, has one of the finest libraries on psychology in the world. 1. PLAY PICTURED is “Holy Acrimony “. Scene is Bill’s apartment Sharon (Betty Moran) and Bill (Dwight Hauser) have been secret lovers for several months. Sharon’s husband, Elton, stands between them

The Great Gildersleeve’s Big Break: Harold Peary's Unforgettable Laugh

Sunday, March 21, 1943 THE MILWAUKEE JOURNAL – SCREEN and RADIO              11 The Great Gildersleeve’s Big Break If Stage Hadn’t Been Too Wide, Hal Peary Mighty Not Have Jumped to Stardom By J. D. Spiro *Picture on page 1 THE HON. Throckmorton P.Gildersleeve , water commissioner of the widely known but mythical town of Summerfield, is today a considerable sort of person in the life of this nation. When at the appointed hour each Sunday (5:30 p. m. our time) he steps to the microphone in NBC’s Hollywood studios some 28,000,000 individuals over the country cock their ears toward their radio sets and eagerly wait to learn what the Great Gildersleeve is about to do next. Yet it was only yesterday, as time goes, that the  Great Gildersleeve   was but an unsung stooge for Fibber McGee and Molly . In truth, until one night in radio New Year’s week of 1939, the  Great Gildersleeve   was just a lot of other fellows of diverse nationalities, including the Chi

‘Actors Are Not Egotists’ by Jack Benny

The Milwaukee Journal – Feb 13, 1938   ‘Actors Are Not Egotists’ A Radio Comedian Turned Screen Actor Here Gives You His Evaluation of His Co-workers and, in the Benny Manner, Emerges With All Banners Flying in His Defense of This Maligned Profession By Jack Benny Jack Benny , as everybody but an unidentified man in French Indo-China knows, appears on NBC Sunday nights with his radio troupe. His next film for Paramount is called “Never Say Die.” HERE is something I’ve wanted to get off my chest for years, I expect to be given arguments about it. There will be many snorts of “Oh, yeah?” But a Benny never falters for mere snorts. He’s faced too many dead-on-their-seats audiences. I say actors as a class aren’t nearly so sold on themselves as nonprofessionals think. Here’s what I mean. An Irishman named Mike wanted to go for a sleigh ride but he didn’t have a sled. His friend Pat did Mike thought over the situation and he said to his wife “Sure it’s

The Whistler 1946

During 1946, three different versions of the Whistler were aired on CBS. 1.        CBS West Coast – aired weekly throughout the year in the 7 western states where the Signal Oil Company had a presence. These shows are our primary driver during this run. 2.        CBS Central – aired weekly from 46-02-03 through the end of the calendar year at 9:30 CDT (8:30 CST) on Sundays on WBBM in Chicago. These shows were all produced at WBBM studios using local repertory players and they were sponsored by Meister Brau Beer. I do not yet know if any other stations in the mid-west carried the programs in 1946. 3.        CBS NET – sustained by CBS, the Whistler ran from 46-07-03 through 46-09-25, as a summer replacement for the Jack Carson show, everywhere else on the network except stations in the Signal sponsorship area and WBBM. A separate log is available for this run. CHICAGO BROADCASTS Two programs that have Meister Brau sponsorship and live audiences. Furthermore, announceme

A Woman's Intuition: Alice Frost in Mr and Mrs North

A Woman's Intuition When Pam and jerry North start out on one of their crime-hunting trips on the Mr. and  Mrs. North radio Programs , they soon find themselves embroiled in all sorts of difficulties .Often, it’s Pam’s intuition-her hunches- which gets them free of those  difficulties and brings the Norths safety home again . There’s a real-life parallel to that, for when Alice Frost , who plays the role of Pam North in the radio series, and her own husband start on one of their less hair-raising adventures, more  often than not it’s Alice’s intuition Which Keep them out  of trouble-or, she confesses in her story , gets them into it! Pamela North and Alice Frost (who is Pam on the air) have much in common - particularly a belief That it never pays to underestimate the power of a “hunch”, especially the female variety  My HUSBAND- not Jerry North, my husband on our  Mr. and  Mrs. North   radio program, but my real husband-and I were impatiently waiti

William Spier: Director of Philip Morris Playhouse & Sam Spade

William Spier Director of CBS’s Radio Shows: Philip Morris Playhouse and Sam Spade A beard veteran of twenty years in radio William Spier, director of the  Philip Morris Playhouse , heard Fridays at 10 P.M. EDT over CBS, is generally rated radio’s top-notch creator of suspense-type dramas. Born in New York City, October 16, 1906, he began doing things upon graduation from Evander Childs High School. When nineteen, following a series of small jobs, Spier went to work for the Musical America magazine. Deems Taylor was then editor of the magazine and it was under his watchful eye that Spier rose to the position of chief critic during the five years he remained with the magazine. Spier’s next important assignment was that of producer-director for the Batten, Barton. Durstine and Osborn Agency in New York City. During his years with BBD & O, leaving there in 1941 to join CBS on the West Coast, Spier produced such radio programs as the Atwater Kent Radio Hour, General Mot

Another Case Closed...Only the Way Basil Rathbone Could Do as Holmes. (Old Time Radio)

From 1939 to 1947, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes reached millions of listeners every week. When the voices of Basil Rathbone as Holmes and Nigel Bruce as Dr. Watson came to the microphone, America was ready to listen. Rathbone brought a sophisticated tone to the character that was hard to mimic. In fact, through the years whenever portrayed Sherlock Holmes in movies or on the was hard to picture anyone but the irrefutable expertise of Rathbone in the role. Concurrently, Mr Bruce maintaining the base bellow of Dr Watson precluded anyone else from establishing similar credibility. Many tried, but no one had Nigel’s presence of portrayal. When Rathbone decided to leave the role, they brought in Tom Conway to continue the voice characterization. Later John Stanley came in to fill the boots. Although these fine performers extended the life of the program...they could not extend the same rapport Rathbone and Bruce developed. These same gentleman played the parts in many movi

Tex Williams: Star of "Western Caravan" July 1950

Tex Williams July 1950 Star of NBC’s “Western Caravan” When the faint wisps of the novelty song, “Smoke! Smoke! Smoke!” first attracted the attention of the entertainment world, few observers recalled the old saw about “where there’s smoke, there’s fire.” When the smoke cleared away, however, the song had sold over 2,000,000 copies and had established Tex Williams, one of its composers and singing star of NBC’s new dramatic Western series, “Western Caravan” (Sundays, 6:30 p.m., EDT) as one of the brightest stars on the entertainment horizon. A native of Ramsey.III., Tex had more than the ordinary obstacles to overcome before he could pursue his musical career. Stricken with polio as a child, it took years of long, grueling exercise to strengthen his body to the degree needed to carry out his ambition. In 1937, he joined a traveling band and. as has happened to many an aspiring artist. was stranded without funds, in this case in Oregon. A generous couple. Mom and Da

Mach 30, 1940: "Believe It Or Not"

Mar. 30, 1940 “BELIEVE IT OR NOT” (A Review) “ BELIEVE IT OR NOT .” With Robert L. Ripley, Linda Lee and the orchestra of B. A. Rolfe . Friday, Columbia Broadcasting System 10:30 p.m. EST, 9:30 p.m. CST, 7:30 p.m. PST Sponsored by Nehi Corp. for Royal Crown Cola, produced by Balten, Barton. Durstine and Osborn, Inc., New York, originates in New York CBS studios. Show reviewed was heard on March 8 DEFINITELY tempoed for the ice-gripped winter trade was this program of Ripley’s “Believe It or Not.” And its music, as well as its two dramatized unbelievables, had to do with tropical islands in sun-kissed seas. The Rolfe orchestra started the torrid program with a hot little number called “Holy Smoke.” followed by the first of the Ripley dramatizations. It was the story of how a French warship, in 1859, had been sent to subjugate a native island in the South Seas and, on the shoals off the very island, was shipwrecked, its sailors captured and sentenced to death

The Mummers Old Time Radio Show (Hermit's Cave)

Sponsored by Alga Coal, a favorite horror-mystery radio program is Hermit's Cave . A rare radio broadcast from the golden age of radio, some listeners remember the broadcast as "The Mummers" radio program  because its referred to in the opening lines of the radio show. Enjoy a broadcast titled "Spirits of Vengence": " Spirits of Vengence "

Writer, producer Bill Idelson dies at 88 (Vic & Sade)

Bangor Daily News – Jan 11, 2008 Writer, producer Idelson dies at 88 Actor played son on ‘Vic and Sade’ BY DENNIS MCLELLAN LOS ANGELES TIMES LOS ANGELES – Bill Idelson, an actor, television writer and producer who as a teenager played the son on the classic radio show “ Vic and Sade ” and later played the recurring role of Rose Marie’s mother-dominated boyfriend on TV’s “The Dick Van Dyke Show,” has died. He was 88. Idelson, who had been hospitalized since June after breaking his hip, died of complications from the injury Dec. 30 in a Los Angeles hospital, said his wife of 56 years, actress Seemah Wilder: As an actor, Idelson appeared in episodes of dozens of television series, including “Dragnet,” “Perry Mason,” “The Twilight Zone,” “My Favorite Martian,” “The Odd Couple,” “Happy Days” and “Will & Grace.” But he might be remembered best by TV fans for his role as Herman Glimcher, the mama’s-boy boyfriend of Rose Marie’s Sally Rogers character on several

Mary Jane Higby: When a Girl Marries, Old Time Radio Soap Opera

NOTES ON MARY JANE “When a Girl Marries” (afternoons NBC) is another of the top-ranked serials. It celebrated its 11 th  year on the air last May. In the Hooper-Nielsen charts it usually has rated among the first four daytime programs. Petite, blonde Mary Jane Higby has been the show’s star (“ Joan Davis ”) since its beginning. Daughter of the owner of a stock company, Mary Jane did her first “walk on” part at the age of one. Mary Jane Higby She was making . . . columnist, too movies in Hollywood at six. Highly trained, versatile, the star occasionally plays supporting roles to herself on her own program. More recently Mary Jane added another role: that of columnist. She is conducting a query department on marriage in “Radio Mirror,” nationally circulated magazine. SAY HELLO TO . . . MARY JANE HIGBY – who was a child star in Hollywood and plays Joan Davis on the CBS serial, When a Girl Marries . Mary Jane was born in St. Louis, Mo., but at the age of five wa