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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wait, I Know This! (podcast)

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"Wait, I Know This!" is a classic tv/film trivia and celebrity interview show.  Each week host   Eric Chilton and crew interview the celebrities we all grew up watching.  The trivia you get is like no other because it comes from the "behind-the-scenes" stories from the celebs themselves.  Sometimes even they are shocked at the great stories of classic Hollywood that they get from the stars.   It's "Wait, I Know This!" and its a ton of fun and nostalgia.

This is an ongoing production and you can tune in and actually ask a question during the live taping by phone, computer mic, or type in a question. You can find the scheduled times here.

A favorite is episode 3 with Betty Lynn who played Thelma Lou on The Andy Griffith Show. Betty shares behind-the-scenes stories of Don Knotts, Andy Griffith and the rest of the cast



Click on show title for information and option to listen or download, click back on title to close. 



Sunday, March 14, 2010

Joan Davis Show

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Joan Davis (June 29, 1907 – May 22, 1961) was an American comedic actress whose career spanned vaudeville, film, radio and television. Remembered best for the 1952–55 television comedy, I Married Joan, Davis had a successful earlier career as a B-movie actress and a leading star of 1940s radio comedy.

Joan Davis entered radio with an August 28, 1941 appearance on The Rudy Vallee Show and became a regular on that show four months later.

Davis then began a series of shows that established her as a top star of radio situation comedy throughout the 1940s. When Vallee left for the Coast Guard in 1943, Davis became the host of his show. With a title change to The Sealtest Village Store, Davis was the owner-operator of the store from July 8, 1943 to June 28, 1945 when she left to do Joanie's Tea Room on CBS from September 3, 1945 to June 23, 1947. Sponsored by Lever Brothers and Swan Soap, the premise had Davis running a tea shop in the little community of Smallville. The supporting cast featured Verna Felton. Harry von Zell was the announcer.

The tea shop setting continued in Joan Davis Time, a CBS Saturday night series from October 11, 1947 to July 3, 1948. With Lionel Stander as the tea shop manager, the cast also included Hans Conried, Mary Jane Croft, the Choraliers quintet and John Rarig and his Orchestra.







TV




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Backstage Wife

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Backstage Wife is an American soap opera radio program that details the travails of Mary Noble, a girl from a small town in Iowa who came to New York seeking her future.

Vivian Fridell had the title role from 1935 until the early 1940s. It was then taken over by Claire Niesen, who continued as Mary Noble until the end of the series. Mary's husband, Larry Noble, was portrayed by Ken Griffin, then James Meighan and finally, Guy Sorel. The music was supplied by organist Chet Kingsbury.

Each episode opened with the announcer (Pierre Andre, Roger Krupp, Stuart V. Dawson) explaining:

Now, we present once again, Backstage Wife, the story of Mary Noble, a little Iowa girl who married one of America's most handsome actors, Larry Noble, matinĂ©e idol of a million other women — the story of what it means to be the wife of a famous star.

The show was created by Frank and Anne Hummert, who produced many radio daytime drama series, including Amanda of Honeymoon Hill, Front Page Farrell, John’s Other Wife, Little Orphan Annie, Ma Perkins, Mr. Chameleon, Mr. Keen, Tracer of Lost Persons and Our Gal Sunday.

Backstage Wife debuted August 5, 1935 on the Mutual Broadcasting System, continued on NBC and concluded January 2, 1959 on CBS. The sponsors included Dr. Lyons Tooth Powder and Procter & Gamble.







 



Backstage Wife.zip



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Saturday, March 6, 2010

Beulah Show, The

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The Beulah Show is an American situation-comedy radio series that ran on CBS from 1945 to 1954, and made its way to television on ABC from 1950 to 1953. It is notable for being the first sitcom to star an African American.

Originally portrayed by White actor Marlin Hurt, Beulah Brown first appeared in 1939 when Hurt introduced and played the character on the Hometown Incorporated radio series and in 1940 on NBC radio's Show Boat series. In 1943, Beulah moved over to That's Life and then became a supporting character on the popular Fibber McGee and Molly radio series in late 1944. In 1945, Beulah was spun off into her own radio show, The Marlin Hurt and Beulah Show, with Hurt still in the role. Beulah was employed as a housekeeper and cook for the Henderson family: father Harry, mother Alice and son Donnie. After Hurt died of a heart attack in 1946, he was replaced by another white actor, Bob Corley, and the series was retitled The Beulah Show.

When black actress Hattie McDaniel took over the role on November 24, 1947, she earned $1000 a week for the first season, doubled the ratings of the original series and pleased the NAACP which was elated to see a historic first: a black woman as the star of a network radio program.

McDaniel continued in the role until she became ill in 1952 and was replaced by Lillian Randolph, who was in turn replaced for the 1953-54 radio season by her sister, Amanda Randolph.







Television

In 1950 Roland Reed Productions adapted the property into a TV situation comedy for ABC, and the Beulah TV show ran for three seasons, Tuesday nights at 7:30 ET from October 3, 1950 to September 22, 1953.

Most of the comedy in the series derived from the fact that Beulah, referred to as "the queen of the kitchen,"  has the ability to solve the problems that her employers cannot figure out. Other characters included Beulah's boyfriend Bill Jackson, a handyman who is constantly proposing marriage, and Oriole, a befuddled maid for the family next door.

Ethel Waters was seen in the title role from 1950 to 1952. McDaniel filled in briefly in 1952 and was succeeded by Louise Beavers the same year. Butterfly McQueen portrayed Oriole, a role similar to her Prissy character in the film Gone with the Wind.

Ruby Dandridge, Mrs. Kelso in Cabin in the Sky and mother of Dorothy Dandridge, replaced McQueen when the entire television cast was overhauled upon the arrival of Hattie McDaniel. Percy "Bud" Harris originally portrayed Bill, but he walked out on the part during the first season, accusing the producers of forcing him to portray an "Uncle Tom" character. He was succeeded in the role by Casablanca pianist Dooley Wilson until Ernest Whitman followed radio co-stars McDaniel and Dandridge to TV in April 1952. The show was directed at various times by future sitcom veterans as Richard (L.) Bare and Abby Berlin.

Like the contemporary television program Amos 'n' Andy, Beulah came under attack from many critics, including the NAACP, which accused the show of supporting stereotypical depictions of black characters with Beulah viewed as a stereotypical "mammy" similar to Aunt Jemima.

After Beulah was cancelled at the end of the 1952-53 television season, black characters virtually disappeared from scripted television, with only small and infrequent roles surfacing on sitcoms. However, television wasn't completely devoid of African Americans, as black people did occasionally appear on "variety" shows like The Ed Sullivan Show and The Hollywood Palace, as proven by kinescopes from the 1950s/1960's. The next television program to star a black woman in the title role was Julia in 1968, starring Diahann Carroll.

The television sitcom produced 87 episodes. It is believed that most episodes of the TV series have been destroyed with only around seven episodes known to survive.


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Times Past has no affiliation with Old Time Radio Researchers. Any related content is provided here as a convenience to our visitors and to make OTRR's work more widely known.

References: Old Time Radio Researchers Group, Wikipedia, Frank Passage & Others OTR Logs, Archive.org, Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio by John Dunning, Australian Old Time Radio Group



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