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My favorite old time radio programs

January 1, 2017

Many years ago I started to recognize a slight ringing in my left ear.  During the day the noise level was tolerable and mostly drowned out by every day sound - traffic, conversation, radio, TV etc.  But at night, preparing to sleep, the "static" became more profound.  I began playing the radio to drown out the extraneous ringing that I heard. 




Around this same time in my life I had a job requiring a commute of nearly 2 hours a day.  I was bored with the drive and needed a distraction from the nothingness that fills your mind and zaps your energy when all the other entertainment fails.  This was the 70's.  No cell phones, ITunes, MP3's, podcasts or SiriusXm radio. The morning & evening radio news sucks - then & now. 


One evening after a particularly bad commute I discovered a new form of book rental at the Arbutus library.  Yes, you had to visit brick & mortar to borrow a book - how quaint.  Actually today's library is still very relevant for all ages.  But I digress.  


In the back, next to the last of the alphabetized books was a shelf of cassettes that you could 'rent'.  They were called "old time radio programs".   There were also "books on tape" but that's a story for a later segment of my blog. I browsed the 10 or so titles and ended up selecting 2 Sherlock Holmes  stories.  I also rented 2 music cassettes.  The former for listening to at night and the latter for boring car rides. 


OMG.  A new world was opened up to me.  Pandora's box you might say.  I started going to the library every few weeks.   It didn't take long to rent all the available tapes.  Not only did Conan Doyle's writing intrigue me, but the new noise at bedtime helped to reduce/eliminate my ear ringing.  I began to sleep better.  These stories were actual radio broadcasts from the 1940's.  My formidable years were the 1960's and the only radio program I remember was Arthur Godfrey.  Look him up.    


The adapted & dramatized versions of Conan Doyle stories by Anthony Boucher and Dennis Green were and are excellent.  "The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes Starring Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce.  Check them out





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