Mon, 15 February 2016
“The Romance of the Ranchos” was one of the more unusual series to be broadcast during the Golden Age of Radio. Sponsored by the Title Insurance and Trust Company of Los Angeles, each episode traced the history of a certain district of Southern California from the days of the Ranchos – when everything was still owned by Spain and Mexico in the 1700s – up to then-contemporary times, the 1940s. Through a series of vivid historical vignettes, listeners would hear how these areas changed and grew to become well-known cities and neighborhoods. This episode centers on the discovery of the La Brea Tar Pits, that bubbling pool of crude oil where mastodon and saber-toothed tiger bones were found at the start of the 20th Century. Then Groucho Marx returns in another episode of the greatest comedy radio quiz show of all time, “You Bet Your Life.” You’re sure to enjoy not only Groucho’s bon mots, but the true story of Bob von Kuznick, whose adventures in the Korean War amaze to this day.
Romance of the Ranchos
“Rancho La Brea”
April 19, 1942
You Bet Your Life
The Secret Word is “Car”
December 16, 1953
Direct download: Presenting_the_Transcription_Feature_-_ROMANCE_OF_THE_RANCHOS_and_YOU_BET_YOUR_LIFE.mp3
Category:Presenting the Transcription Feature -- posted at: 4:39pm EDT
Wed, 27 January 2016
“Bobby Benson and the B-Bar-B Riders” was a kid’s radio show set in “the modern West.” Bobby was a 12-year-old who had inherited a Texas cattle ranch, the B-Bar-B. He and his ranch hands struggled against rustlers and other sorts of appropriately western, but mid-20th-Century, hazards. This episode prominently features a young Don Knotts playing crusty old-timer Windy Wales. In Windy, you’ll hear the roots of Knotts’ Nervous Man character, who eventually morphed in Deputy Barney Fife on “The Andy Griffith Show.” Then Bing Crosby hosts the “The Kraft Music Hall,” the radio program that solidified his place in radio history. Crosby hosted the variety show for a decade, singing standards and popular tunes of the day as well as cracking wise with plenty of guest stars. This time, he hosts young Donald O’Connor, who’s about to go into the Army. Bing open with the post-war classic “San Fernando Valley,” then he and O’Connor mix it up with “Small Fry.”
Bobby Benson and the B-Bar-B Riders
“The Killer Wales”
December 28, 1949
The Kraft Music Hall
“Guest Donald O’Connor”
February 24, 1944
Direct download: Presenting_the_Transcription_Feature_-_BOBBY_BENSON_and_THE_KRAFT_MUSIC_HALL.mp3
Category:Presenting the Transcription Feature -- posted at: 5:28pm EDT
Thu, 7 January 2016
We start off the new year with The Jack Benny Show. Jack, Mary, and the gang are celebrating the change-over from 1938 to 1939. They survey the previous year, which included Howard Hughes flying around the world and “Wrong Way” Corrigan, who left New York for California, but ended up flying to Ireland. Then before Jack Webb was Sergeant Joe Friday on Dragnet, he was the titular hero of Pat Novak, For Hire. Pat was a sort of un-detective. He ran a boat rental place on the San Francisco Bay, but solved crimes and problems to raise extra cash. Pat’s tough guy, hard-boiled lingo is a far cry from Friday’s “Just the Facts” persona.
The Jack Benny Show
“Goodbye 1938, Hello 1939”
January 1, 1939
Pat Novak, For Hire
May 5, 1948
Direct download: Presenting_the_Transcription_Feature_JACK_BENNY_and_PAT_NOVAK.mp3
Category:Presenting the Transcription Feature -- posted at: 6:58pm EDT
Tue, 29 December 2015
Christmas is over. Its time for some Old Time Radio post-Christmas reflections and preparation for New Year’s. We start with Eve Arden starring in Our Miss Brooks. During Christmas vacation the sardonic English teacher has plans to exchange the dreadful presents she received for something a little more useful. And so does everyone else. Then on Dragnet we feature the adventure of a con racket that starts in the middle of December and goes all the way through to a New Year’s Eve party. You’re a detective sergeant. You take a cup o’kindness yet for auld lang syne.
Our Miss Brooks
“Exchanging Christmas Gifts”
December 31, 1950
“The Big Betty”
November 23, 1950
Direct download: Presenting_the_Transcription_Feature_Our_Miss_Brooks_-_Dragnet.mp3
Category:Presenting the Transcription Feature -- posted at: 8:43am EDT
Mon, 14 December 2015
It’s December, so it’s time for some Christmas-themed episodes. We start off with The Harold Peary Show. Peary had been a huge success starring in The Great Gildersleeve, but left due to a contract dispute. This eponymous series was an obvious attempt to copy Gildersleeve. The show only lasted one season but did result in a couple of great episodes including this Christmas one which features Harold and reformed thief. Then “The Robin Hood of Modern Crime,” Simon Templar, in the form (well, voice) of Vincent Price returns in another action-packed episode of The Saint. It’s Christmas Eve and Simon has an appointment to play Santa for a bunch of under-privileged tiny tots. Nothing could possibly go wrong.
The Harold Peary Show
“Santa At The Children’s Christmas Party”
From Dec 20, 1950
“Santa Claus Is No Saint”
December 24, 1950
Direct download: Presenting_the_Transcription_Feature_-_Harold_Peary_and_The_Saint.mp3
Category:Presenting the Transcription Feature -- posted at: 6:38pm EDT
Wed, 25 November 2015
It’s the beginning of the holiday season on “Presenting the Transcription Feature.” Thanksgiving is not too early for the Lux Radio Theater adaptation of Miracle on 34th Street, featuring the movie’s original stars: Maureen O’Hara, John Payne, and Edmund Gwenn. Remember that the show’s inciting incident is the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and the rest of the story plays out over the month of December. So, as you prepare that turkey and those yams, tune in to some classic old time radio.
Lux Radio Theater
“Miracle on 34th Street”
Direct download: Presenting_the_Transcription_Feature_-_Miracle_on_34th_Street.mp3
Category:Presenting the Transcription Feature -- posted at: 12:17pm EDT
Wed, 11 November 2015
This time on Presenting the Transcription Feature, here’s a double dose of Jack Benny and the young geniuses of The Quiz Kids. First up on the Jack Benny Program, Jack’s cast matches wits with the visiting Quiz Kids with the usual zany results. Then, just a week and a half later, Jack makes a guest appearance on The Quiz Kids. Is he smarter than a 9th grader?
The Jack Benny Program
"Quiz Kids vs. Jell-O Kids"
April 6, 1941
The Quiz Kids
"Guest: Jack Benny"
April 16, 1941
Direct download: Presenting_the_Transcription_Feature_-_Jack_Benny_and_The_Quiz_Kids.mp3
Category:Presenting the Transcription Feature -- posted at: 5:00am EDT
Wed, 28 October 2015
There’s two Halloween episodes for your enjoyment on this installment of “Presenting the Transcription Feature.” First, the wholesome world of small-town America is shaken by a string of Halloween tricks on The Alrich Family. Who’s letting the air of car tires? Who’s ringing doorbells and running? Could it be that scamp Henry Aldrich? Before Halloween was all about candy, it was all about tricks. Then Eve Arden stars as Our Miss Brooks, the comedic and sardonic, but beloved, English teacher making her way in yet another small town. Nothing seems to go right for her, her students, or her principal, as they plan a Halloween party.
The Aldrich Family
“Halloween Prank Backfires”
October 31, 1940
Our Miss Brooks
October 30, 1949
Direct download: Presenting_the_Transcription_Feature_-_The_Aldrich_Family_and_Our_Miss_Brooks.mp3
Category:Presenting the Transcription Feature -- posted at: 5:00pm EDT
Tue, 13 October 2015
Presenting another radio adaptation of a Hollywood classic from the Screen Guild Theater, starring the film’s original leads. Tonight it’s Champagne for Caesar with Ronald Colman as unemployed genius Beauregard Bottomley who appears on television quiz show hosted by Art Linkletter. As the amount of money Bottomley wins increases, it threatens the very business of the show’s sponsor, played with sneering relish by Vincent Price. A must-hear episode for fans of game shows as well as Old Time Radio.
The Screen Guild Theater
“Champagne for Caesar”
October 10, 1950
Direct download: Presenting_the_Transcription_Feature_-_Champagne_for_Caesar.mp3
Category:Presenting the Transcription Feature -- posted at: 5:53pm EDT
Wed, 30 September 2015
This week we present the final step in the saga of “The Walking Man” contest when winner Florence Hubbard appears on The Jack Benny Program. Those who have been listening closely for the past few weeks will have their attention rewarded as several old themes and topics are referenced. Then Academy Award-winning actor Ronald Colman and his wife Benita Hume star in their comedy-drama series set at a small Midwestern college, The Halls of Ivy. Colman plays the college’s president, sagely dispensing advice to the undergraduates. Lessons will be learned and heartstrings will be tugged.
The Jack Benny Program
“Winner of The Walking Man Contest”
March 14, 1948
The Halls of Ivy
June 28, 1950
Direct download: Presenting_the_Transcription_Feature_-_Jack_Benny_and_The_Halls_of_Ivy.mp3
Category:Presenting the Transcription Feature -- posted at: 7:07pm EDT