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Entries Tagged as 'classical music'

Your Home Front Reporter - Pgm 26 - June 14, 1943

September 18th, 2008 · Comments

Another entry in the series, "Your Home Front Reporter", originally broadcast weekdays on CBS and sponsored by the Owens Illinois Glass Company, featuring commentator Fletcher Wiley.  This is a series of discs I recently obtained of a series not heard since World War II. In program 26 of the series, broadcast June 14, 1943, Fletcher Wiley talks about a new "welding" sewing machine you can buy after the War if you buy and save up your War Bonds and offers a commentary on keeping a positive attitude and "getting along" with what's available in wartime.  Frank Parker sings "Drink to Me Only With Thine Eyes"; Parker and Eleanor Stebel perform "If You Were the Only Girl in the World" and Stebel sings Gershwin's "Summertime".  The show features the David Brookman Orchestra and announcer Hugh Conover.

The program was transferred from a vinyl transcription, matrix numbers BB35796 and BB35797, pressed by World Broadcasting System, Inc. for the Owens Illinois Glass Company.

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Tags: WW II related · classical music · Your Home Front Reporter

Your Home Front Reporter - Pgm 24 - June 10, 1943

September 12th, 2008 · Comments

"Your Home Front Reporter" returns this week with the 24th program in the series, broadcast June 10, 1943 on the CBS network.

Fletcher Wiley reminds everyone to apply for their new ration books and gives a talk about gossip.  Frank Parker performs "Mother of Mine"; Eleanor Steber sings "Bartlett's Dream"; Steber and Parker sing the duet "'Neath the Harvest Moon".  The show features the David Brookman Orchestra and announcer Hugh Conover.

Transferred from vinyl transcription, matrix numbers BB35745 and BB35746, pressed by World Broadcasting System, Inc. for the Owens Illinois Glass Company, the sponsor of the program.

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Tags: WW II related · classical music · Your Home Front Reporter

Works Progress Administration Presents - 1937 Series, Pgm 6

September 12th, 2008 · Comments

I had someone write who enjoyed hearing the classical music program "The Works Progress Administration Presents" a few weeks ago, so here's another episode.  The program featured WPA-sponsored musical ensembles from the Federal Music Project performing contemporary and classical works and has a few words about WPA programs in your area.

Program six of the 1937 series features the Federal Music Project Chamber Orchestra, conducted by Samuel Gardner, with works by Hayden and Mozart.

The program was transferred from RCA Victrolac pressing, matrix MS 04978.

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Tags: classical music · Depression-era · WPA

Your Home Front Reporter - May 12, 1943, Pgm 3

September 4th, 2008 · Comments

Another episode of the previously uncirculated series "Your Home Front Reporter", broadcast afternoons on CBS and sponsored by the Owens Illinois Glass Company.

In the episode of May 12, 1943, the third program in the series, Fletcher Wiley comments on taking care of your car for the war effort, women going on blind dates, and other topics.  Frank Parker sings "One Alone"; Eleanor Steber performs "In the Glow".  The David Brookman Orchestra plays the "Missouri Waltz".

Transferred from vinyl transcription, matrix numbers BB35351 and BB35352, pressed by World Broadcasting System, Inc. for the sponsor.

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Tags: WW II related · classical music · Your Home Front Reporter

Your Home Front Reporter - Pgm 2 - May 11, 1943

August 27th, 2008 · Comments

Note: This program contains some World War II-era racial stereotyping slang that may be offensive to some listeners.

Continuing our look at "Your Home Front Reporter", a previously undocumented Wartime series, we hear program 2, broadcast May 11, 1943 on the CBS network.

Commentator Fletcher Wiley discusses why we shouldn't get too excited about good news from the battle fronts since the end of the war may be some time away. He also mentions that new shipments of alarm clocks are coming on the market.

Eleanor Steber sings "Just a Song at Twilight"; Frank Parker performs "The Night is Young, And You're So Wonderful"; Steber and Parker sing the duet "Why Do I Love You?". The show features announcer Hugh Conover and the David Brookman Orchestra.

The mp3 was transferred direct from a vinyl transcription, matrix numbers BB35330 and BB35331, pressed by World Broadcasting System, Inc. for the Owens Illinois Glass Company, the sponsor of the program.

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Tags: WW II related · historical · classical music · Your Home Front Reporter

Your Home Front Reporter - Pgm 1 - May 10, 1943

August 27th, 2008 · Comments

Note: This program contains some World War II-era racial stereotyping slang that may be offensive to some listeners.

We're starting a new series on the blog with "Your Home Front Reporter". This half-hour program was broadcast in the afternoons, Monday through Friday, on the CBS network. Sponsored by the Owens Illinois Glass Company and produced by the D'Arcy Advertising Company, Inc in cooperation with the Office of War Information and other government agencies. I haven't seen any shows in the series in otr listings or in circulation.

The program consists of light opera and popular music along with news and commentary about the War and ways that women and families could help with the War effort. Most programs in the series feature vocalists Frank Parker and Met Opera star Eleanor Steber. It's a curious snap-shot of the War World II home front mindset and an opportunity to hear a Steber very early in her career. (Read the Wikipedia entry on Steber's career for some interesting highlights; I have a copy of the ultra-rare RCA album of her concert at New York's Continental Baths.)

The series also features commentator Fletcher Wiley, whose folksy style first came to notice with listeners in Southern California in the 1930s. Wiley was a pioneer in talking on radio to women about issues they were interested in; his style is similar to Arthur Godfrey and Paul Harvey in some ways. You can read a 1940 article about Wiley at the Time magazine archives. (On some of the "Your Home Front Reporter" shows from Fall 1943 I'll be posting later, Wiley is replaced by Don Regan, who concentrated more on harder news stories. I'm not sure if Regan was a temporary replacement for part of the run of the series.)

In this first program of the series, originally broadcast May 10, 1943, Fletcher Wiley talks at the beginning of the show about the purpose of the series, then offers a commentary on politeness and another on the many uses of the soybean. Frank Parker performs "Begin the Beguine" and Eleanor Steber sings "Carry Me Back to Old Virginia"; they perform a duet, "Dearly Beloved". The announcer is Ben Grauer and the show features the David Brookman Orchestra.

The program was transferred from a vinyl transcription, matrix numbers BB34870 and BB34871, pressed by World Broadcasting System, Inc. for the Owens Illinois Glass Company. This may be a rehearsal recording since it runs over 30 minutes (others in the series run 25 minutes). Note that there's a nasty scratch on second side at beginning for first three minutes or so.

I have ten other shows in the series I'll be posting in coming months; I ran into a set of eleven discs in the series, still in their original shipping containers where they were mailed to a staff member at the Owens Illinois Glass Company.

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Tags: WW II related · historical · classical music · Your Home Front Reporter

The Works Progress Administration Presents - 1938 Series, Pgm 53

August 20th, 2008 · Comments

Continuing from our previous post on the series "The Works Progress Administration Presents", we have another rare recording of a lesser known composer.

Program 53 of the 1938 series features the Forum String Quartet of Boston performing the Lento from the String Quartet, Opus 96 by Dvorak and the Allegretto movement from the Creole Quartet by Harry Newton Redman.  This appears to be the only known recording of a work by Redman, who was a member of the New England Conservatory of Music.

Directly transferred from RCA Victrolac pressing, matrix number MS 013489.

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Tags: classical music · Depression-era · WPA

The Works Progress Administration Presents - 1937 Series, Pgm 10

August 20th, 2008 · Comments

Here's a little something for you classical music buffs out there.

"The Works Progress Administration Presents" was a series syndicated from 1936 to 1938 featuring WPA sponsored orchestral, vocal and chamber groups performing contemporary and standard classical works. The program was part of the Federal Music Project, directed by Nikolai Sokoloff, a Russian-American conductor and violinist. Each quarter hour program includes a commercial promoting some aspect of the WPA's work in local communities or programs that unemployed workers could take advantage of.

In program 10 of the 1937 series, we hear the Los Angeles Grand Opera Group performing selections from the first and third act of the opera, "Fernando del Nonsensico" by composer Felix Borowski. The piece is a satire of grand opera that references "Lucia", "Aida", "Carmen", and other popular works.

The Federal Music Project in Los Angeles produced the opera in February, 1936 and this was the radio premiere of the work. Borowski was newspaper critic at the Chicago Sun and professor of theory and counterpoint at the Chicago Musical College. This is the only known recording of "Fernando del Nonsensico".

I recently obtained five programs from this series and would like to hear more - though the groups mostly tackle standard repertoire, they occasionally work in lesser known compositions from contemporary composers.

The program was directly transferred from RCA Victrolac pressing, matrix number PMS 09299. (Note that the disc has a slight warp.)

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Tags: classical music · Depression-era · WPA

Gilbert and Sullivan - Yeoman of the Guard, Sept 16, 1944

May 23rd, 2008 · Comments

As if this blog weren't esoteric enough, here's a show that's a bit different from the material I've usually posted here. It's the Sept 16, 1944 episode of the series "Gilbert and Sullivan" with a presentation of "Yoeman of the Guard". In the cast are Florence Aims, Mureal Wilson, Fred Hufsmith, Paul Reed, Celia Branz, Hugh Thompson, Veronica Wiggins. The orchestra is conducted by Joseph Stopak.

This show actually comes from an AFRS disc set from their series "Metropolitan Opera" and is program number 43 in their series of that title. The AFRS used the "Metropolitan Opera" series as a kind of "catch all" for opera performances and they would use broadcast recordings by other companies or from other opera radio series; I've run into another example in the series that is a broadcast recording by the San Francisco Opera.

"Gilbert and Sullivan" was a series broadcast on the Blue Network of operas by the duo. There are two other surviving shows from the series I've been able to find references for; one of "Iolanthe" and another of "The Gondoliers", both broadcast in September 1944 and from AFRS transcriptions.

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Tags: AFRS · classical music