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Entries Tagged as 'WW II related'

WEEI Job Center - January 11, 1948

June 18th, 2010 · Comments

Now another one of my local radio oddities.  I've posted several local shows over the past few months that originated in 1947-48 and seemed to be grouped together for some type of competition.

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"WEEI Job Center" was a local program from a Boston station that announced jobs available for returning vets.  The show also includes an interview with a guest who discusses psychometric testing of job applications.  It was broadcast January 11, 1948 from 10:30 am to 11:00 am and, unfortunately, only the first half of the program survives.

This obscure little bit of history was transferred from an original WEEI lacquer.

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Tags: WW II related · local radio

American Family Robinson - New Series - Pgm 76

June 18th, 2010 · Comments

We skip ahead a few weeks in this week's look at "American Family Robinson-New Series", picking up the story with program 76 in the series for release the week of October 13, 1940.

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The owner of a rival department store has planted a dictaphone in the Robinson household, hoping to catch Luke and Myra arguing to expose their image of "the perfect couple" as a sham.  As the show opens, Luke, in a conversation with Aunt Agatha, is bemoaning the fact that he's having to work so hard on this publicity stunt.  Somehow, this turns into a conversation on how businesses, if they don't get the word out about how they're preparing for the possibility of war, might find themselves working for a dictatorial government.

The show was created and distributed by the National Industrial Council (aka the National Association of Manufacturers) as part of a propaganda effort to influence public opinion on liberal government policies.  The transfer is direct from an original Orthacoustic vinyl transcription pressed by RCA, matrix number MS 055676-1

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Tags: WW II related · American Family Robinson - New Series

American Family Robinson - New Series - Pgm 65

June 13th, 2010 · Comments

Now back to the continuing story of our politically conservative capitalist family in "American Family Robinson-New Series", a serial syndicated by the National Industrial Council (aka the National Association of Manufacturers).

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In program 65, for release the week of September 1, 1940, Luke, the Baron and Myra pack up and finally head for home after the camping trip.  This someone how leads to a discussion about preparations for the war and accusations by pacifists that industry is war mongering.

The show was transferred from a vinyl Orthacoustic transcrption pressed by RCA, matrix number MS 051991-1

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Tags: WW II related · American Family Robinson - New Series

Command Performance - Pgm 146

March 21st, 2010 · Comments

I've got a special fondness for the Armed Forces Radio Network's variety programming they put together for the troops.  They're a little more loose and raucous than the network shows and you never know who might turn up or what they may come up with on the program.

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In this post, we hear "Command Performance", program 146.  The show is hosted by Fred Waring and the opening tune is a wonderfully goofy version of "Old Rockin' Chair" performed by Waring's orchestra and chorus.  The show includes a tour of the sounds of New York with the city's columnists including Dorothy Kilgaren.

The show was transferred from original Navy Department AFRS vinyl transcription, probably pressed by RCA.  Matrix numbers ND4-MM-9463 and ND4-MM-9464.

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Tags: AFRS · WW II related · Command Performance

Voice of the Army - Pgm 269

December 20th, 2009 · Comments

Many transcriptions in my collection were created for the War effort to entertain the troops or inform the public at home about the good cause.  This one's a bit unusual, since it looks at some of the major changes that would happen when the War would be over.

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It's program 269 of the series, "Voice of the Army".  Titled "Report Number B-129", the show presents the results of a survey done of GIs about what they planned doing with their lives once the War was over and they returned to civilian life.  Frank Lovejoy plays a soldier who returns to civilian life and finds it lacking; of course, he decides to return to service in the Army.

The transcription was probably pressed by RCA and carries matrix number ND5-MM-11488.

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Tags: WW II related · US Army

We Hold These Truths - December 15, 1941

December 4th, 2009 · Comments

Now, we present one of the most unique broadcasts of the old time radio era.

"We Hold These Truths" was a one hour dramatic program written by Norman Corwin for the 150th anniversary of the Bill of Rights.  Scheduled to be heard on all four networks on December 15, 1941, events would turn the program into something bigger than a simple commemoration.

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The federal government commissioned the broadcast and preparations were made for the show before Pearl Harbor, of course.  With the nation suddenly at war, the program took on a special meaning - it holds the record for the largest radio audience for a dramatic program.  Some have estimated that 63 million listeners, about half of the US population at the time, turned in to the program.

Heard in the show, broadcast from Hollywood, New York and Washington, DC, are Lionel Barrymore, Jimmy Stewart, Orson Welles, Edward Arnold, Walter Brennan, Bob Burns, Walter Huston Marjorie Main, Edward G. Robinson, and Rudy Vallee.  The music was composed and conducted by Bernard Herrman; Leopold Stokowski conducts the national anthem at the end of the program after remarks by President Roosevelt.

This mp3 of the program was transferred from an original Federal Radio Education Committee, US Office of Education, vinyl transcription set, matrix numbers G-3013-P, G-3014-P, G-3015-P, G-3016-P.

I think it's one of Orson Welles most memorable radio performances, by the way - he practically chews up and spits out the microphone during the show.

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Tags: drama · WW II related · historical

Your Home Front Reporter - October 8, 1943

December 4th, 2009 · Comments

Here's our next to last entry in my collection of discs from the unusual and previously unheard Wartime series, "Your Home Front Reporter", a mix of news and music sponsored by the Owens Illinois Glass Company.

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From October 8, 1943, here's program 110 in the series.  Tenor Phil Regan opens the show with the song "Just a Little Bit of Heaven".  Mrs. Jimmy Doolittle stops by to discuss how families can help keep down prices and prevent inflation.

Don Pryor gives an update on the War news.  Starting tonight, the West Coast can start turning on most lights again as dim-out restrictions are relaxed; there may be a government release of eggs, milk and butter to ease shortages; it looks like salmon have been adjusting to the dams on the Columbia River and the Spring Salmon Run was above average; an update on how the WACS are helping the War effort.  Eileen Farrell, making a radio appearance early in her career, sings "The Night Was Made for Love".  The show ends with an announcement calling for volunteers for the School Lunch Program.

The program was transferred from vinyl transcription, matrix numbers BB37255 and BB37256, pressed by World Broadcasting System, Inc. for the Owens Illinois Glass Company.

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Tags: WW II related · Your Home Front Reporter

Your Home Front Reporter - October 4, 1943

November 18th, 2009 · Comments

This month I'm on something of a World War II kick - in this post, we're revisiting a series I started running last year and I'll be running the last four episodes in my collection over the next few weeks.

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"Your Home Front Reporter" was broadcast in the afternoons on CBS starting in May 1943 and sponsored by the Owens Illinois Glass Company.  The program is a mix of light operetta music by Frank Parker and Met opera star Eleanor Steber and commentary and news on the War aimed at housewives.

Program 106 in the series was originally broadcast October 4, 1943, and includes news of advances by the Allies in Europe and the Pacific.  There's also commentary about how the Fall harvest celebrations and Thanksgiving are a little different during Wartime.

The program was transferred from vinyl transcription, matrix numbers BB37198 and BB37199, 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

Mail Call - Unknown pgm number

November 18th, 2009 · Comments

In this post, a bit of a mystery - an unnumbered and undated episode of the Armed Forces Radio series "Mail Call".

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The host of the program is Jane Nye.  The King Sisters kick off the show with "Candy".  Betty Grable, Bob Hope, Humphrey Bogart and Bing Crosby appear in a sketch that parodies "The Princess and the Pirate".  The program also includes appearances by Dick Haymes, Ken Murray, Marilyn Maxell.  It sounds like it's probably an "assembled" show, with Nye's segments recorded to introduce segments from other Armed Forces Radio programming.

The show was transferred from a unusual 14" microgroove lacquer that sounds like a dub of an original AFRS disc and appears to date from the 1960s.  Christopher McPherson donated the disc to the blog and, believe it or not, the disc came from the estate of Mae West.

Goldin lists his particular "Mail Call" episode, but I couldn't find any other references to the show.  Is the original vinyl disc still out there somewhere?

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Tags: AFRS · WW II related

Mail Call - Pgm 93

October 8th, 2009 · Comments

Now let's turn back the clock to World War II with another entry in the Armed Forces Radio Network variety series, "Mail Call", that brought the top stars from movies and radio to perform for the troops.

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This is a pretty amazing little half-hour program.  Program 93 features hostess Paulette Goddard introducing W.C. Fields, Charlie McCarthy and Mortimer Snerd with Edgar Bergen, Virginia O'Brien, Borrah Minnevitch and the Harmonica Rascals and the King Sisters.  The announcer for the show is Don Wilson.

The program is dedicated to armed forces personnel from the State of Kentucky, so there's something of a Kentucky Derby theme going on, at least in the program's opening and first number by the orchestra, "Kentucky".  The King Sisters sing the War themed tune, "Milkman, Keep Those Bottles Quiet" and the Harmonica Rascals do a wonderful arrangement of "Brazil".  (I'm a fan of the Harmonicats, so this was a real treat.)

The highlight of the show is the sketch with W.C. Fields and Edgar Bergen.  They're in rare form, with Fields and Bergen tossing in adlibs as Fields gets lost in the script.

The show was transferred from an original AFRS vinyl transcription.  According to the log of the series at otrsite.com, it was recorded May 24, 1944.

By the way - do you recognize the theme the orchestra plays after the intro of Paulette Goddard?  It would turn up years later as a main theme used on "The Big Show".  Was this some kind of stock cue in the music score library at NBC?

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Tags: comedy · variety · AFRS · WW II related