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Rocky Jordan, Volume 2 - 10 hours [Download] #RA546
10 hours - Digital Download
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"Cairo, gateway to the Ancient East...where modern adventure and intrigue unfold against the backdrop of antiquity..."
Listening to broadcasts from the Golden Age of Radio today, it's interesting to note that many OTR favorites were often heard only in certain regions of the United States. The best example is "The Whistler" which, despite its longevity, was heard solely on the west coast for all but a season or two. Other examples of west coast dramas include detective shows like Mutual's "Let George Do It," NBC's "Candy Matson," and the CBS series "Jeff Regan, Investigator."
, a distinctively different-sounding detective offering heard over CBS Radio's Pacific network from 1945 to 1950, is one more member of this elite broadcasting fraternity. A series that could be described as a mixture of "Casablanca" and "The Maltese Falcon," "Jordan" debuted on January 8, 1945 as a five-day-a-week quarter-hour serial entitled "A Man Called Jordan." The titular hero, portrayed by radio veteran Jack Moyles, owned and operated an Istanbul dive dubbed the Café Tambourine and, though described by OTR historian John Dunning as "a hero in the 'I Love a Mystery' mold," was actually a shrewd businessman motivated more by the financial bottom line than cheap sentiment. Still, he had a knack for frequently getting involved in mystery and murder and often depended on a colorful cast of sidekicks - his "man Friday" Ali (Paul Frees), girlfriend Toni Sherwood (Dorothy Lovett), and trusted pal Duke O'Brien (Jay Novello) - to assist him in his amateur investigations. "A Man Called Jordan" switched to a weekly half-hour format beginning July 2, 1945, and entertained West Coast audiences for approximately two years.
Apparently, Mr. Jordan took a year off to relocate the Café Tambourine to Cairo when the program returned to CBS on October 31, 1948. Apart from the new location, it was business as usual for 'the Rock' as he fought escaped killers, desert raiders, ex-Nazis and black marketers on a weekly basis. It was with this show's incarnation that the comparisons to "Casablanca" were particularly apt; Jordan would often have to depend on his police force ally Captain Sam Sabaaya (also played by Novello) for assistance. Though the two men clearly respected one another, they often found themselves sizing each other up in the same skeptical fashion as Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart) and Captain Louis Renault (Claude Rains) did in the Oscar-winning film classic.
"Rocky Jordan" might have been dismissed as just another run-of-the-mill detective series, but its exotic locale, tight scripting, and swift, self-assured direction by Cliff Howell set it apart from the infinite number of shows broadcast at that time. The series' writers, Larry Roman and Gomer Cool, often found inspiration from both a copy of the U.S. Army's Pocket Guide to Egypt and real-life anecdotes culled from newspapers; the program "The Dearite Bowl," for instance, was based on the true story of a farmer who discovered a priceless relic while digging on his land. Topping off the proceedings was the original Oriental-sounding music contributed by Richard Aurandt, support from the crème de la crème of actors from "Radio Row" (Peter Leeds, Ben Wright, Parley Baer, etc.) and the always-dependable Larry Thor ("Broadway's My Beat") who handled the program's announcing chores. "Rocky Jordan" was heard as a Sunday night staple on CBS' West Coast network for the next two years, sponsored by Del Monte Foods, and part of an evening line-up that also included "The Adventures of Sam Spade" and "The Whistler."
The Dearite Bowl
Sunday, October 23, 1949 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The Demarco Affair
Sunday, October 30, 1949 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
Sunday, November 6, 1949 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The Strange Death of Van Dorn
Sunday, November 13, 1949 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The Big Heist
Sunday, November 20, 1949 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
Sunday, November 27, 1949 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The Veiled People
Sunday, December 11, 1949 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The Man from Cairo
Sunday, January 1, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
Sunday, January 8, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The Loomis Affair
Sunday, January 15, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
Interlude with Lorena
Sunday, January 22, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
An Air of Death
Sunday, January 29, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The Return of Toni
Sunday, February 5, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
Madame DuLac's Daughter
Sunday, February 12, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
Paid in Full
Sunday, February 19, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The Return of Dr. Piru
Sunday, February 26, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The Secret of Wong Lee
Sunday, March 5, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The White Beetle
Sunday, March 12, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The Perfect Witness
Sunday, March 19, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
The Strange Fate of Professor Amar
Sunday, April 2, 1950 - 30:00 - CBS West Coast, sponsored by Del Monte Foods
A Man Named Jack
The October 1949 issue of "Radio and Television Mirror" featured a brief article about Jack Moyles, the star of "Rocky Jordan." It offers a small but unique insight into the life and career of an actor who, though largely forgotten today, was a busy and popular performer during the hey-day of network radio.
There's a lot of mileage between Cairo, Egypt and the Columbia Square studios of KNX in Los Angeles, but Jack Moyles spends half an hour each Sunday afternoon in both places.
The Egyptian phase of Jack's life started in 1945 when he was set to play "A Man Named Jordan" on the Columbia Pacific Network. Owner of the Cafe Tambourine in Cairo, Jordan spent his spare time chasing crooks. In that first year Jordan, A Man Named...did his chasing five days a week, fifteen minutes at a time.
Now he's gained a first name, and a lot of West Coast listeners who travel to Egypt with Rocky Jordan every Sunday.
Jack is a Californian right down to his first pair of shoes - he was born in San Francisco on June 26, 1913. He followed up his first appearance before an audience in the high school senior play with active participation in the San Francisco University's Glee Club and Players group. After graduation, radio producers, too, liked the sound of Jack's voice and in 1933 he made his debut as an announcer, but the start of his radio career in San Francisco meant only one step in the vocational ladder set up by Moyles. His next aim was a job with the CBS station in Hollywood.
With two friends who worked with him at the San Francisco station, a "Hollywood Caravan" (that was the banner) of two cars invaded the southern mecca of talent from the north.
Two days after Moyles arrived in Los Angeles he had a job. Being particularly adept at various roles and several dialects, Jack was immediately busy and established. Then, in January of 1945, the Moyles-Rocky association began. And in the four years the program has been broadcast from KNX in Los Angeles, Jack has missed only one program.
That day, June 28, 1945, instead of tending to Cafe Tambourine business as Rocky Jordan, Jack Moyles was wearing a tuxedo and nervously mumbling "I do" before an altar. The bride was Nina Vanderbush, attractive CBS receptionist.
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