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.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Who Let the Moondog Out? The Way It Was, 4 December

1954: WHO LET THE MOONDOG OUT?---WINS star disc jockey Alan Freed is denied the further use of his nickname Moondog on the air by New York State Supreme Court Justice Carroll J. Walker.

Walker thus upholds the claim of blind, bohemian singer/musician/composer Louis Hardin, who claimed rights to the nickname on the basis that he was known thereby, long enough before Freed---whose original program in Cleveland was known as The Moondog Rock and Roll Matinee---laid claim to it.

Hardin enjoys a small but influential career as an idiosyncratic musician and composer with orchestral aspirations; his best-remembered compositions, however, will probably be "Moondog Symphony," which Freed himself has played on his radio show, ironically enough; and, a bluesy trance number, "All is Loneliness," made familiar to a later generation of rock fans by Janis Joplin, as the lead singer for Big Brother and the Holding Company.


1923: ONE SMALL STEP FOR RADIO VARIETY---WEAF New York airs the first edition of the first commercially sponsored variety program in old-time radio history, the National Carbon Company's The Eveready Hour.

Within a year, it will feed to several stations that come in due course to form the core of what becomes the National Broadcasting Company. Famous soon enough for such one-act musical plays as "The Mayor of Hogan's Alley" and "How's the Judge," and performers such as Bugs Baer, Belle Baker, Eddie Cantor, Pablo Casals, and Will Rogers (when the show went "network," including Election Day returns), The Eveready Hour will air until 1930.


LUX RADIO THEATER: A MAN TO REMEMBER (CBS, 1939)---Bob Burns and Anita Louise take the Edward Ellis and Anne Shirley film roles, in this slightly over-idealised take on a humanitarian small-town doctor repelling greed among the locals---including that of his own son. Host: Cecil B. DeMille. Adapted from the 1938 screenplay by Dalton Trumbo.

MAXWELL HOUSE COFFEE TIME STARRING GEORGE BURNS & GRACIE ALLEN: GRACIE WANTS BING CROSBY TO RETIRE (NBC, 1947)---Only Gracie (Allen) could consult a psychiatrist and conclude that getting Der Bingle to quit bingling is the way to settle George (Burns) and his nerves. Additional cast: Bill Goodwin, Gale Gordon, Hans Conreid, Bea Benaderet. Announcer: Toby Reed. Music: Meredith Willson and his Orchestra. Writers: Paul Henning, Sid Dorfman, William Burns, George Burns.

MY FAVOURITE HUSBAND: BE YOUR HUSBAND'S BEST FRIEND (CBS, 1947)---Fearing George (Richard Denning) would rather play poker than go out with her, Liz (Lucille Ball) listens to a women's club speaker's suggestion that she make herself her husband's best friend---assuming George doesn't think that with friends like this, he doesn't need enemies. Katie: Ruth Perrott. Iris: Bea Benaderet. Atterbury: Gale Gordon. Writers: Jess Oppenheimer, Bob Carroll, Jr., Madelyn Pugh.

OUR MISS BROOKS: THE WEIGHING MACHINE (CBS, 1949)---Connie (Eve Arden) isn't the only one promised a tall, dark man entering her life. Mrs. Davis: Jane Morgan. Walter: Richard Crenna. Harriet: Gloria McMillan. Mr. Monet: Harold Moore. Conklin: Gale Gordon. Boynton: Jeff Chandler.


1889---Buck Jones (as Charles Gebhart; actor: Hoofbeats), Vincennes, Indiana; Isabel Randolph (actress: Dan Harding's Wife; Fibber McGee & Molly), Chicago.
1921---Deanna Durbin (as Edna Mae Durbin; singer/actress: The Eddie Cantor Show), Winnipeg, Manitoba.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Deanna Durbin's work on the Eddie Cantor Show was the stepping stone she needed to become a star on the Silver Screen. For those who are interested in Deanna's radio work, just copy and paste the following link in your web browser:

Best wishes always,


8:59 AM  
Blogger Jeff Kallman said...

Interesting material, that. Thanks Alex!---Jeff

7:54 PM  

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