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Showing posts from November, 2011

Dennis Day, "Christmas For Carol": Christmas in Suspense!

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Young Dennis Day was Jack Benny 's tenor from his radio premier in 1939 until the end of The Jack Benny Program on both Radio and Television. During the 1964-65 TV season, Jack kept delivering lines like "That crazy kid drives me nuts..." Baker was 47 at the time. Dennis Day  as a bright-eyed if somewhat scatter-brained young man was a hard type-cast to shake. Even Suspense! , which was known for casting comedians in horror , took advantage of the fresh-faced persona. In "Christmas for Carol",  Day  lays a young husband who is in a desperate situation. He learns that his wife will require bed rest and a nurse's care for the remainder of her pregnancy. He knows that his small salary from the bank won't cover it. He does learn that an older couple has withdrawn their life's savings that day, but how can that help him? Through some unsavory contacts he passes the information to a local hoodlum. Soon he is in over his head, and having a crisis

"Quiz Kids" Christmas

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Quiz Kids  aired on Sundays evenings and had a devoted following of both adults and children on the Blue Network.  Hosted by Joe Kelley of  National Barn Dance , the show featured a panel of youngsters who had been selected for their intelligence and wit. But working with kids is never a sure thing! Kelley however, who claimed to be no intellectual and couldn't have answered the questions if they weren't printed on his flash cards, was expert at putting the kids at ease during the broadcast of the Quiz Kids radio show . On one  Christmas Radio Show   questions included: "What are the best reasons to prove there is a Santa Claus?"Identify these Christmas Belles,""Identify these Character's from Dickens by these quotes," and "Is there a Santa Claus." Read more about radio quiz programs...

Himan Brown: Legendary Radio Producer

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Legendary Producer/Director/Creator, Himan Brown's productions included audio works such as Inner Sanctum , The Thin Man , Radio Mystery Theater , Terry and the Pirates , Bulldog Drummond ,   Dick Tracy , Adventure Theater , Grand Central Station , and an endless list of daytime soap operas . Hyman Brown On accepting his American Broadcast Pioneer Award "If you stop to think about it you’ll have to admit that listening has become a lost art these days. Who really listens? Because, really, who has to? But, the basic appeal of radio drama was and is the fact that you have to listen if you want to follow the story. It isn’t enough to merely “hear” it.  You have to listen. The word listen implies a conscious effort to pay attention…to participate. All the senses are activated…the curiosity is sparked…the imagination is fired, and the listener finds himself participating! He is a collaborator. In his brain he matches a face and a body to the voice. In his mind

Omar Wizard of Persia Old Time Radio Show

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One of the charms of investigating Old Time Radio shows is the element of mystery that often crops up. We aren't talking about Mystery Programs necessarily, (although they can be a lot of fun in their own right) but mysteries about the surviving shows them selves. Much of the mystery comes from the nature of surviving old radio show. In some cases, beloved shows are well preserved because some one directly involved with the program thought to hold onto recordings of the show. This si the reason that Fibber McGee and Molly has survived, the sponsor, Johnson Wax, made it a point to keep a recording of each show they sponsored. It needs to be remembered that for most of the radio era, audio recording was rather primitive. Shows that were put into syndication had to be recorded in a robust media, like a vinyl disk, but for the most part, if a recording was made, it would usually be made on a fragile acetate disk. Not only were they fragile, but they were relatively bulky, and wh

Journey Into Space: Old Time Radio Shows

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In the mid 1950's the Light Programme service had the idea that a Science Fiction series would be popular. The assignment was handed over to producer Charles Chilton. Chilton didn't have any background in science, or science fiction, but the general thought was that if he could produce a successful  western  from London ( Riders of the Range had six seasons, ending in 1953) he should be able to handle a trip to the moon! Originally scheduled for eight episodes,  Journey to the Moon  proved to be some what tedious listening through the first four episodes, as the "ground work" was established for a moon launch using the best guesses of the potential technology from a 1953 perspective. Once the mission "got off the ground", following the launch of the spacecraft in episode 5, the popularity soared as well, and the series was extended to 18 episodes (rerecorded the original series for overseas distribution in 1958, as  Operation Luna . This time the story