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.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Big Deal: The Way It Was, 18 November

1955---Neither the lady who birthed him nor the parents aligned to adopt him from the crib suspect that the butterball of a newborn boy will grow up to become . . . your humble old-time radio chronicler, among other things none so great and none so simple.

He does find it humbling in his way to share a birthday with a few music titans (Paderewski, Eugene Ormandy, the first half of Gilbert and Sullivan, Johnny Mercer, Hank Ballard). On the other hand, he'd love to know if his birthday is the same date, 748 years previous, on which William Tell shot the Red Delicious off his son's scalp.

And, he is precisely thirty years younger than Mickey Mouse, if you accept the New York premiere of Steamboat Willie as Mickey Mouse's legitimate birth, though he's been trying to cut the Mickey Mouse out of his life for long enough.

Since your chronicler has become many things, earth-shattering not being among them, on another day mostly bereft of genuinely world-beating old-time radio doings or undoings, perhaps the best way to celebrate is to just make right for the . . .


1940: THANKSGIVING SHOW---All things considered, you can probably wonder just how to have a Thanksgiving when the hostess (Gracie Allen) could be accused of being the turkey, on tonight's edition of The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show. (NBC.)

Additional cast: Senor Lee, Truman Bradley. Music: Artie Shaw and His Orchestra. Writers: Paul Henning, Keith Fowler, George Burns.

1945: MARGARET O'BRIEN---McCarthy lures (Edgar) Bergen into the McCarthy Book Nook, Mortimer mulls hypnotism, and McCarthy lures Margaret O'Brien into his version of The Courtship of Miles Standish, on tonight's edition of The Charlie McCarthy Show. (NBC.)

Cast: Anita Gordon, Pat Patrick. Music: Ray Noble and His Orchestra. Writers: Possibly Roland McLane, Royal Foster, Joe Connelly, Bob Mosher.

1945: RENTING A ROOM---The Alley demimonde discusses a pending clothing shortage, and Fred (Allen)---needing a new apartment---ends up renting a temporary room . . . from Boris Karloff, on tonight's edition of The Fred Allen Show. (NBC.)

Portland: Portland Hoffa. Claghorn: Kenny Delmar. Moody: Parker Fenelly. Mrs. Nussbaum/The Head Down the Hall: Minerva Pious. Openshaw: Alan Reed. Music: Al Goodman and His Orchestra, the Five DeMarco Sisters. Writers: Fred Allen, Bob Weiskopf, Nat Hiken.


1860---Jan Ignace Paderewski (pianist: Paderewski's Eightieth Birthday Tribute), Kurilovka, Poland.
1899---Eugene Ormandy (conductor, mostly with the Philadelphia Orchestra: Roxy's Gang; The Philadelphia Orchestra), Budapest, Hungary.
11/18/1899 -- Eugene Ormandy -- d. 3-12-1985
1900---Don Quinn (creator/writer: Fibber McGee & Molly; The Halls of Ivy), Grand Rapids, Michigan.
1908---Imogene Coca (comedienne: The Big Show), Philadelphia.
1909---Johnny Mercer (singer/songwriter: Camel Caravan; Johnny Mercer's Music Shop; The Dinah Shore Show), Savannah, Georgia.
1912---Arthur Peterson (actor: The Guiding Light; The World's Great Novels), Mandan, Maryland.
1926---Dorothy Collins (singer: Your Hit Parade), Windsor, Ontario.
1945---Glenn Walken (actor: The Guiding Light), Queens.


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