Radio Archives Newsletter
November 27, 2015 - Black Friday Edition
16th Anniversary Celebration!
Radio Archives is celebrating 16 years of creating great products and we're commemorating this anniversary with a number of superior offers and once a year discounts till December 31st!
The Bargain Basement has a wide selection of Old Time Radio & Audiobook audio CDs - Pulps - Books and lots more at great prices. More than 50 discounted items, supplies limited. Check back often as new items are added every day.
Doc Savage Fans!
A brand new Doc Savage Audiobook plus a new Novel by Will Murray and the new Double Novel reprint are available today.
August 31, 1941 is considered an important date in the history of the Golden Age of Radio — for it was on this very day that Throckmorton P. Gildersleeve, neighbor and nemesis to Wistful Vista's famous son Fibber McGee, bid goodbye to his employees at his successful girdle works company and hopped a freight to nearby Summerfield to supervise the estate of his deceased sister's orphaned children, Marjorie (played at various times by Lurene Tuttle, Louise Erickson and Mary Lee Robb) and Leroy Forrester (Walter Tetley). Except for a handful of guest appearances, Harold (Hal) Peary — the actor who played the pompous Gildersleeve — ceased to be a Fibber McGee & Molly regular, having secured a successful spin-off entitled The Great Gildersleeve.
The Great Gildersleeve became one of radio's most successful situation comedies, and nearly fifty years after it left the airwaves, it continues to be a favorite among old-time radio fans. It was distinctive in that the series placed a strong emphasis on character-driven comedy, as opposed to the vaudeville-based slapstick of its parent show, Fibber McGee & Molly. As portrayed by Peary, the Throckmorton P. Gildersleeve character — who, on Fibber McGee, had a pronounced larcenous streak — mellowed considerably, settling into the comfortable role of kind and loving uncle to his niece and nephew. Assisted in the running the household by housekeeper Birdie Lee Coggins (Lillian Randolph). Outside the home, Gildersleeve's closest association was with Judge Horace Hooker (Earle Ross), with whom he had many battles during the first few broadcast seasons.
The Great Gildersleeve also distinguished itself as a sitcom that embraced a semi-serialized format; one in which its weekly comic situations were set against a background of a continuous story arc. For example, during the 1943-44 season Gildy romanced the aforementioned Eve Goodwin while actively campaigning to be Summerfield's mayor.
So sit back and enjoy the twelve original broadcasts offered in this collection and presented exactly as broadcast, complete with commercials for Kraft Foods.
6 hours - $8.99 Download / $17.98 Audio CDs
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Twins Judy and Jimmy Barton crawled into their attic one December day and found a passageway to a place called Maybeland. They looked in all the dusty corners for any sign of the silver star that always sat atop their Christmas tree. Their search crossed the path of little Paddy O'Cinnamon, "The Cinnamon Bear," who had shoe-button eyes and a ferocious growl. He showed them a small hole through which the Crazy Quilt dragon had absconded with their star and invited Judy and Jimmy to pursue the rascal. Paddy would function as a guide and they'd chase the dragon throughout Maybeland. Paddy magically "de-grew" the twins so they'd fit through the attic tunnel, fired up a miniature airplane powered by soda pop, and flew the Barton kids into a startling and wondrous adventure.
So begins "The Cinnamon Bear," a delightful, one-of-a-kind children's series produced in 1937 by TRANSCO, the Transcription Company of America. Intended to be heard between Thanksgiving and Christmas, the series features twenty-six fifteen-minute cliffhanger installments. The program immediately hooks children because suspenseful fun is always present as each episode concludes with yet another obstacle for Paddy and the twins to overcome. The dragon eventually joins up with the trio but remains unpredictable and mischievous. Named "Crazy Quilt," he succumbs time and time again to his obsession with the shiny silver star.
"The Cinnamon Bear" is, arguably, the best holiday series ever developed for radio. Containing all of the elements of a classic children's fantasy, combined with radio's unique ability to create vivid mental images in the minds of its listeners, it continues to delight both young and old. And now, for the first time, you can hear and enjoy "The Complete Cinnamon Bear" -- including all twenty-six original and unedited shows, the original 1937 promotional recording, and all of the songs from the series as transferred from an original set of 78 RPM recordings. Each of the programs has been digitally transferred directly from a set of original 16" broadcast transcriptions and painstakingly restored for outstanding audio fidelity - truly the best-sounding version of the series that has ever been released. It's yet another triumph for Paddy and his band of travelers as, after well over seventy years, they once again carry on their magical search for the silver star.
7 hours - $10.49 Download / $20.98 Audio CDs
Special 50% discount Offer
For some, they're nostalgic, recalling a time of glittering night spots and elegant ballrooms, surrounded by dancers dressed to the nines and romancing to the melodies of a by-gone era. For others, they're archival, allowing listeners to hear the sounds of musicians and vocalists who often went unrecorded during their hey-day. But for many, remote broadcasts featuring the big bands of the 1940s and 1950s are simply excellent entertainment, featuring talented artists at the top of their form, performing live and in-person in front of enthusiastic audiences that came to listen, to dance, to romance, or just to dream.
Whether you remember the big band era yourself or appreciate the timeless music of the war years and beyond, Radio Archives knows you'll find many treasures in this collection, offering twenty half-hour broadcasts dating from 1943 to 1952 and featuring twenty of the top bands and musical groups so popular at the time. In addition to performances by orchestras that are still well remembered today - Jimmy Dorsey, Harry James, Stan Kenton, Ray Anthony, Louis Prima - this collection also features broadcasts by several lesser-known but equally talented ensembles. In rare wartime broadcasts, Charlie Spivak, Lee Castle, and Sonny Dunham demonstrate their individually unique trumpet styles; the hotel-based bands of Gay Claridge and Leighton Noble display their knack for gentle but effective dance music, as was so often featured in stylish high-end nightspots like New York's Waldorf Astoria and Astor Hotels; Jan Savitt, originally a classical violinist, integrates smooth strings with jump tunes in arrangements that are as danceable as they are exciting.
All of these performances exist today thanks to the efforts of the Armed Forces Radio Service, a Los Angeles-based division of the U. S. Government's War Department which, in 1942, began recording, editing, and re-releasing commercial radio programs for airing on hundreds of military shortwave stations throughout the world. From the beginning, the AFRS attempted to bring the full spectrum of America's radio entertainment to the men and women of the armed forces - and, since American radio networks always featured live band remotes in the late night and early morning hours, it was only natural that the AFRS would record and rebroadcast these shows as well. Editing and repackaging the shows under the overall title of "One Night Stand," over the course of twenty five years, the AFRS captured and preserved literally thousands of live musical performances - shows that, for the most part, would have otherwise gone unrecorded and lost to the ages. So sit back and give a listen to the delightful orchestras and melodies of the big band era, as heard on "One Night Stand". Whether these programs bring back memories, impress you with their historical value, or just make you want to hum, sing, or dance along, we know this is a set you'll want to play and enjoy over and over again.
Specially priced until December 3rd. 10 hours - $7.49 Download / $14.99 Audio CDs
Special 50% discount Offer
Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar, billed as the adventures of "America's action packed insurance investigator". In the fall of 1955, however, some surprising things happened to Johnny Dollar. In a stroke of casting genius, long-time radio veteran Bob Bailey, took over the title role. Director Jack Johnstone and writers John Dawson, Robert Ryf, and Les Crutchfield joined the production team. And, at the same time, CBS began experimenting with some of its longest-running radio series by offering them as quarter hour, five-a-week "strip" shows, running Monday through Friday. The result was a shot in the arm for Johnny Dollar - and a surprisingly fresh beginning for a show in a medium that was rapidly turning away from drama. It was obvious that actor Bob Bailey was born to play the role, bringing to his portrayal a realistic depth and likeability that had been lacking in earlier versions of the show. The newly expanded format gave the writers a chance to craft characters and develop the depth of the stories without the need to wrap up every loose end after 24 brief minutes of dialogue. And the subtle cliffhanging nature of the stories made radio's dwindling listening audience want to tune in day after day.
This fourth 10-CD Radio Archives collection features ten five-part stories first aired in the spring and summer of 1956. As you listen to Dollar as he painstakingly pursues each case to its conclusion, note the extensive research that has obviously gone into each script; the action always takes place in real locations, complete with real street names, and landmarks are frequently noted throughout the shows. Local stations that broadcast Johnny Dollar are often mentioned, as well as the actual names of their personnel -- an interesting and amusing way to sustain interest in the show among network radio affiliates that might (or might not) be willing to carry it at all. The sound patterns, the musical scores, and the realistic dialog paint such a true audio picture that you can't help being swept, chapter by chapter, into the adventure. And the performers, including such radio veterans as Virginia Gregg, Lawrence Dobkin, Eleanor Audley, Lurene Tuttle, Harry Bartell, Sam Edwards, Joseph Kearns, Marvin Miller, William Conrad, Jeanette Nolan, and Richard Crenna, demonstrate their diverse talents in a series of realistic and textured characterizations.
For long-time fans of Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar, these five-part adventures constitute the absolute pinnacle of the series' run — and, in this fourth collection, Radio Archives is pleased to bring you another ten full weeks of these engrossing programs in excellent digital sound.
Specially priced until December 3rd. 10 hours - $7.49 Download / $14.99 Audio CDs
by Will Murray and Lester Dent writing as Kenneth Robeson
Read by Michael McConnohie
It began with an uncanny encounter on busy Seventh Avenue. Two men pass each other in the street, walking along calmly one minute—struck down the next by a horrific fate.
All over Manhattan, soundless detonations cut down prince and pauper alike. No one is safe. Great buildings are reduced to ruin. Banks are demolished. The authorities stand helpless.
Only one man, Doc Savage—scientist, adventurer and superman—can penetrate the eerie enigma that threatens to bring the mightiest city on earth to its knees. But when The Alchemist decrees that the Man of Bronze must surrender unconditionally to save New York, will Doc be snuffed out next?
From the besieged canyons of New York to the rugged coast of Alaska, Doc Savage and his men race to resolve the riddle that brings grisly doom to ordinary citizens—and threatens the economic recovery of a Depression-besieged world.
Michael McConnohie once again gives a commanding performance reading this enthralling thriller.
10 hours - $19.99 Download / $39.98 Audio CDs
by Will Murray and Lester Dent writing as Kenneth Robeson
Read by Michael McConnohie
When Bantam Books asked me to continue the long-running Doc Savage series, I knew I wanted to base them on the uncompleted works of the late Lester Dent, originator of the Man of Bronze.
As I moved forward with the series, I started looking at Lester's files for material not conceived for Doc, but adaptable to the series. Early in his career, Dent had created a hulking hero he called Curt Flagg, a private investigator of the Sam Spade knock 'em and shoot 'em up hardboiled detective school popular at that time. This series appeared in a magazine called Scotland Yard in 1931.
I could detect some of the energy and ideas for Doc Savage percolating in the Curt Flagg stories. He was no ordinary PI. Flagg took on pirates, Zeppelin high-jackers and wicked master criminals, supported by a growing band of savvy operatives. He was Doc Savage before Doc Savage.
Scotland Yard soon fell victim to the Great Depression. When the magazine was cancelled, one complete Curt Flagg story and an unused outline were orphaned. It was the outline that interested me. It told the tale of how Flagg and some of his assistants booked passage on a San Francisco to Hong King ocean liner to hunt down Quon, the Jade Ogre—one of the most malevolent master criminals in the world.
By transforming Curt Flagg to Doc Savage, changing his lovely blonde assistant, Dita Vardi, to Patricia Savage, and inserting some of Doc's men into the mix, I believed I had a template for a great Doc Savage story.
The Jade Ogre will carry you the listener from the fog-shrouded streets of the Chinatown of 1935 San Francisco to the crumbling ruins of Cambodia as the armless and ruthless Jade Ogre attempts to blackmail the world with his lethal Jade Fever. This is a quest, a running gangster war and a fearful excursion into the heart of darkness that is Asia—or the Asia Americans imagined in the 1930s.
Think Dr. Fu Manchu meets China Seas. You won't be disappointed.
Specially priced until December 3rd. 12 hours - $11.99 Download / $23.99 Audio CDs
by Will Murray and Lester Dent, writing as Kenneth Robeson, cover illustration by Joe DeVito
When a vivacious blonde convinces Monk Mayfair to skip an important sea voyage to London, and instead run off to her Louisiana plantation, Ham Brooks is very suspicious.
After Doc Savage enters the picture, things start popping. As in fists and guns. Finding themselves on a steamship bound for the Caribbean, Doc, Ham, and a reluctant Monk become embroiled in wartime intrigue surrounding the question of who is desperately trying to keep them off the Northern Star, and why?
From New York City to the Bahama Banks, Doc Savage and his mighty men follow the trail, making new allies along the way, until they plunge into a hurricane of horror only some will survive…. Softcover $24.95
by Will Murray, cover illustration by Joe DeVito
Doc Savage vs. King Kong!
Eighty years ago in February, 1933 the Street & Smith company released the first issue of Doc Savage Magazine, introducing one of the most popular and influential pulp superheroes ever to hit the American scene. Doc Savage was the greatest adventurer and scientist of his era, and while his magazine ended in 1949, he influenced the creators of Superman, Batman, Star Trek, The Man from UNCLE and the Marvel Universe—to name only a few.
While that first issue of Doc Savage was fresh on Depression newsstands, RKO Radio Pictures released one of the most important fantasy films of all time. Everyone knows the story of how King Kong was discovered on Skull Island and hauled back to New York in chains, only to perish tragically atop the world’s tallest skyscraper, the Empire State Building.
As it happened, that was where Doc Savage had his world headquarters. For decades, fans have wondered: Where was Doc the day Kong fell?
On the eightieth anniversary of these fictional giants, Altus Press is proud to release the first authorized clash between The Man of Bronze and the Eighth Wonder of the World—Doc Savage: Skull Island. Written by Will Murray in collaboration with Joe DeVito, creator of KONG: King of Skull Island, Doc Savage: Skull Island is a new pulp epic. Softcover $12.47
The pulps' greatest superhero returns in two action-packed thrillers by Lester Dent writing as "Kenneth Robeson." First, after Johnny Littlejohn disappears in Cairo, Doc Savage journeys to the Land of the Sphinx to discover the strange secret behind "The Pharoah's Ghost." Then, the Man of Bronze is accused of murder when "The Man Who was Scared" is killed in Doc's own offices! PLUS a Bill Barnes novelette by Charles S. Verral, a never-published article by Lester Dent and a classic illustrated story from the Golden Age of Comics. This instant collector's item showcases both classic color covers by Modest Stein and the original interior illustrations by Paul Orban with historical commentary by Will Murray, author of sixteen Doc Savage novels. Double Novel Reprint $14.95
Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows! The Master of Darkness crushes crime in two early pulp novels by Walter B. Gibson. First, after one of his key agents is murdered by mobsters, The Shadow journeys to Chicago to avenge the death through "Gangdom's Doom." Then, piracy on the high seas lures the Dark Avenger into a deadly confrontation with the murderous mastermind of "The Golden Grotto." This instant collector's item showcases the classic color pulp covers by Jerome and George Rozen and the original interior illustrations by George Wert and Tom Lovell, with original commentary by popular culture historian Will Murray. Double Novel Reprint $15.95
The pulp's most murderous crimebuster wages his deadly war on crime in two violent 1935 thrillers by Norvell Page. Recovering from life-threatening injuries, Richard Wentworth confronts the lightning-wielding Lion Man from Mars to end mass slaughter and save his beloved city from "The Flame Master." Then, with Nita held hostage and Commissioner Kirkpatrick enslaved by a criminal mastermind, The Spider wages his lone war against the acid-spraying "Overlord of the Damned." This double novel pulp reprint showcases the original color covers by John Newton Howitt, John Fleming Gould's classic interior illustrations and historical commentary by Will Murray. Double Novel Reprint $14.95
has a wide selection of Old Time Radio - Audiobooks - Pulps - Books - Cassettes and lots more at great prices. More than 50 discounted items, supplies limited.
Comments From Our Customers!
Bobby Roy writes:
I bought some of Your AWESOME 1930s Cocoanut Grove Ambassadors CDs Around a year ago. I LOVE My CDs and would LOVE more of these Wonderful recordings! Thank You so much and GOD Bless You Always.
C. Southworth writes:
Jimmy Christopher is on the side of good - and we're lucky to have him! Averting disaster is his stock in trade, and he accomplishes the impossible on a daily basis. The keen incisive mind of a detective par excellence, the nimble fingers of a master of sleight of hand, and the deadly skills of a world-class fencer are brought to bear on those who would do America harm. In this thrilling tale, learn of the sinister plot of The Darkness, as a terrorist legion threatens to choke out America's hope and confidence. Gasp in astonishment as Manhattan shuts down completely! Grip the edge of your seat as you hear the President's speech interrupted by a fear-monger's announcement of terror! Learn in grim silence of the horrors which await us all on the Thirteenth Darkness! A fast-paced, well-written tale of action and adventure awaits you as you glimpse the future as seen through the lens of the past. Be there for each exciting chapter of Operator #5 -- The Masked Invasion!
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