rand’s esoteric otr

rand’s esoteric otr header image 1

This is War - February 21, 1942

February 8th, 2019

We continue with a short run of a few episodes from Norman Corwin’s series, “This Is War”, carried on all four networks just a few weeks after the US entered World War II.

Episode 2, broadcast February 21, 1942 is “The White House at War”.  Actor Paul Lukas paints a vivid word portrait of the changes happening to Washington as we shift to a war footing - the program looks not only at the President’s role in the War, but at the immense responsibility for human life that go into the decisions being made in Washington.

The program was transferred from an original 16” vinyl Orthacoustic transcription pressed by RCA-NBC, matrix numbers MS 086735 and MS 086736.

I believe this is a non-circulating episode of the series.

 

The People Act - May 18, 1952

February 8th, 2019

Here’s the last episode I have of the unusual CBS documentary series, “The People Act”.  Using then-new portable tape recording technology, the series looks at efforts for cultural understanding in small communities around the US.

Program 20 in the series, originally heard May 18, 1952, is titled “Displaced Persons Are Welcomed As New Americans”.  Robert Trout narrates as the people of Owatonna, Minnesota welcome European refugees to their local community.

 

The program was digitized from an original 12” microgroove lp issued by the People Act Center in State College, Pennsylvania.  It was pressed by Columbia and XTY-17203 is the matrix number.

Naval Air Reserve Show - Pgm 24

February 8th, 2019

Another quarter hour of upbeat harmony is on the way on the blog with the “Navel Air Reserve Show”, hosted by Don Ameche, with he Honeydreamers with the George Barnes Octette.  Program 24 features Sam and Aunt from “The Breakfast Club”.  The first song is “Sunday”.

Our show was transferred from an original Naval Air Reserve Command 16” vinyl transcription, matrix number U-4024.

Thanks again to blog listener William Harris for the disc!

Fred Waring Show - April 26, 1945

February 8th, 2019

Here’s another installment in the popular series featuring light music by Fred Waring and His Pennsylvanians.  Originally heard on the Blue network on April 26, 1945, this is the Armed Forces Radio Service version, where it was distributed as program 414 in the series.  The first song is “Tico Tico”.

Our musical half-hour was dubbed direct to digital from an original vinyl Armed Forces Radio Service transcription disc.

Many thanks to blog listener William Harris for his donation of the disc to the collection!

Great Music - Pgm 143

February 8th, 2019

Here’s an obscure Armed Forces Radio Service program, “Great Music”, giving GIs fifteen minutes of short classical works.  Program 143 in the series is hosted by Walter Huston.  The first selection is the overture to “Ruslan and Lyudmila” by Glinka.  Also heard is a two-piano duet by Amparo and José Iturbi.

The show was digitized direct from an original 16” Armed Forces Radio Service transcription.

Again, my thanks to blog listener William Harris for his donation of the disc to the collection.

This is War - February 14, 1942

February 1st, 2019

In this post, the first in a short run from the unique Norman Corwin series, “This Is War”.  Produced shortly after the US entry into World War II, the series was carried on all four networks and looked at various facets of the fight ahead.

This series isn’t quite as well known as Corwin’s other efforts, such as “We Hold These Truths”.  It’s just as lyrical, using words, music, and sound in a masterful way to paint pictures in the listener’s imagination.  However, it’s rather harsh compared to his other work - it’s propaganda for the War effort that really tries to hammer home the point that this is a fight for the survival of democracy.

Program 1 in the series is narrated by actor Robert Montgomery and focuses on why we’re fighting and atrocities committed by the Axis powers. It includes an opening message from President Roosevelt read by Archibald Macleash.  The show as carried on all four of the networks on February 14, 1942.  This is a transfer of the NBC feed of the program.

Our show was transferred from an original 16” vinyl Orthacoustic transcription pressed by RCA-NBC, matrix numbers MS 086711 and MS 086712.

Next week - program 2 in the series.

Reno Rides the Range - Pgm 4 Part 2

February 1st, 2019

Following up on our previous post, here’s the second half of program four in the Western adventure series, “Reno Rides the Range” featuring Western movie actress Reno Browne.  In this episode, Reno is tracking down a killer that is captured by Indians.

The program was transferred from an original 16” red vinyl transcription.

Let me know if you have or run into other discs in this lost series.

Reno Rides the Range - Pgm 3 Part 2

February 1st, 2019

Now a real obscurity on the blog.

Usually, I don’t post partial broadcasts on the blog, but I can’t find any copies of this show in circulation and it is historically significant.

“Reno Rides the Range” was a syndicated series from 1949 starring Reno Browne, an equestrian and actress who appeared in several Western b-movies at Monogram.  As far as I can tell, this is the only Western adventure radio show that featured a female character in the lead role.  (Wikipedia notes that Reno Browne and Dale Evans are the only Western actresses to have comic books based on their characters.)

In this post we hear the second half of program three in the series.  The plot concerns Reno helping track down a group of outlaws.

I've seen information around the web that there were 13 episodes in the full series.  It would appear that Reno syndicated the show herself to local stations where she appeared at rodeos and other events.  She passed away in 1991 - the discs might be floating around out there with her family or collectors of Western movie memorabilia.  Anyone ever see one?

The program was transferred from an original 16” red vinyl transcription.

In the next post, the other side of the disc.

Kenny Baker - September 23, 1945

February 1st, 2019

Next up, a program featuring popular vocalist and “Jack Benny” alumnus Kenny Baker.

Originally heard September 23, 1945 on CBS, we hear the Armed Forces Radio Network version where it replaced program 104 of “The Hour of Charm”.

The guest on the show is harmonica virtuoso Lou Adler.  The first song is a medley of “Remember the Night” and “Cheek to Cheek”.  Kenny is backed by Robert Armbruster and His Orchestra and Chorus.  The announcer is Wendell Niles.

The program was digitized from an original 16” vinyl Armed Forces Radio transcription.  The date is from the disc matrix.  I believe this is a previously uncirculated episode of the series.

My thanks go out to blog listener William Harris for his donation of the disc to the collection!

American Rhapsody - April 7, 1945

February 1st, 2019

Here’s a rather obscure network musical show “American Rhapsody”.  This is the episode of April 7, 1945 as it was heard on the Armed Forces Radio Network replacing Fred Waring program 412.

The show, hosted by Frederick Shields, the program features vocalist Gene Baker, the Dix Davis Glee Club, and Wilbur Hatch and His Orchestra (not playing the “I Love Lucy” theme).  The first song on the show is “Song of the Vagabonds”.  Other songs include “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes” and “The Hills of Home”.

Our show was transferred from an original 16” vinyl Armed Forces Radio transcription.  The date is from the disc matrix.  (Goldin’s database has a listing for this episode dated April 8, but I double-checked the date on the disc.)

Many thanks to blog listener William Harris for his donation of the disc to the collection!