Jeff Kallman's excellent The Easy Ace: A Journal of Classic Radio
is a wonderful place to spend hours on end, rediscovering the Golden Age of Radio
as it's meant to be discovered and celebrated. Article after article
is filled with a wonderful new vignette about Golden Age Radio History.
---The Digital Deli Online.

[I]n his matchless on-this-day approach to chronicling “yesteryear,”
he easily aces out a less organized mind like mine,
which promptly lapsed into a more idiosyncratic mode of relating the past.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Surrey with the Infringement On Top: The Way It Was, 22 January

1925---Such was the message for the most part when a number of American radio writers and composers---many being members of the Society of Authors, Composers, and Publishers---testify to Congress, a committee of which is probing the radio industry’s alleged infringement of writing and music copyrights.

Later in the year, in the third of three National Radio Conferences conducted between 1923 and 1925, a Copyright Committee concludes copyright owners are "entitled to reasonable compensation for the use of their copyrights, and the representatives of the broadcasting interests indicated a complete willingness to pay a reasonable charge for copyrighted [materials] used by them," but that broadcasters can’t use such materials, music especially, "except on prohibitive and unstable terms."

The committee will recommend Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover, who chairs the conference, propose federal legislation aimed at loosening such terms---without suggesting just how Hoover should write the proposal or what to leave in or out. Hoover himself will have opened the conference by stating, among other things, that the Commerce Department isn’t concerned directly with such issues as copyright, deeming them matters of "copyright, not radio."


1933: EVERYTHING ELSE IS CUT RATE, AND HE’S RUNNING A CUT-RATE COURT---Fred Allen holds court as a slightly off-center judge meting out inside-out justice, in "The Court of Judge Allen," tonight’s installment of The Linit Bath Club Revue. (CBS. This may be the second-oldest surviving broadcast to have been hosted by Fred Allen.)

1940: MOTHER'S LITTLE MIXUP---Or, ‘twas almost a month after Christmas, when Ginger Rogers (repeating her film role) and Frederic March (in David Niven’s film role) performed the first radio version of Bachelor Mother, about the fired store clerk mistaken to be the mother of a foundling, a mistake that alters her life come holiday time, on tonight’s edition of Lux Radio Theater. (CBS.)

1954: BREAKFAST IS SEVERED---Hoping it will prove as successful on the picture box as it has been on radio, ABC simulcasts the day’s edition of Don McNeil’s popular The Breakfast Club on television. Hope springs infernal, alas: the show does not catch quite on television the way it would continue on radio for another fourteen years.


. . . to Campaspe, the Self-Styled Siren, the lady with the rapier stiletto, with Hollywood past and present as her primary target, and a wholly agreeable passion for old books, classic film, classical music, and my native New York, for quite a few kind words and for linking to your servant's wisenheimer journal. (She actually had me at Judy Holliday, but let's not get technical.) That makes seven readers for your servant . . .


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