Special Features

Here you will find what I hope is an ever-growing eclectic mix of recordings and other items that should be of interest to those of us in the Old time Radio hobby.

The OTR Database Project

Posted: February 3, 2015

Here I will describe the ongoing process of building a searchable database of my OTR collection.

The OTR Database Project Page

Another look back at Ray Briem. Subject: Fred Allen

Posted: May 15, 2013

In this show he interviews Robert Taylor who had recently published a biography of Fred Allen. John and Larry Gassman from SPERDVAC are also there.

This recording is from November 11, 1989 and runs 2 hours. Click here to play or right-click to download (File size: 28 megabytes)

Johnny Dollar's Expense Account

Posted: March 15, 2013

For quite a few years I've wondered, "How much would all of Johnny Dollar's expense accounts total up to?" It wasn't until I retired this past year that I decide to find out.

The first thing I did was to round up all the "Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar" shows I had in my collection and place them in a single directory. Next, I downloaded all the shows from www.archive.org that the Old Time Radio Researcher's Group had there and placed them in another directory. I ended up with over 700 broadcasts which, when the multi-part shows where grouped together, came to just over 500 shows to examine.

Next, I assembled a log in a spreadsheet program. I built the log from a few that I found online, being primarily concerned with show number, title, and date with all in a consistent format.

Then came the time-consumming process of listening to the end of each program to hear Johnny read off the total of that story's expense account. Occassionaly he would toss it out, doing that portion of the job at no charge, or tell the client to total up the items themselves. When I heard the total, I would enter it in the spreadsheet.

Once I had the data complete, I wrote a program, in PHP, that converted and uploaded the spreadsheet into a table in an online MySql database. Then I wrote the web page, mostly in PHP, that displays the data and allows for sorting by column, both ascending and descending.

You can view the page here:

Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar - Expense Account Summary

My OTR Presentation

Posted: December 24, 2012

I was invited to make a presentation on the history of radio at the Western Heritage Museum, here in Billings, MT. This was part of their noon time lecture series that looks at local history. While I have used this presentation numerous times in different venues with different focuses, I did want to get into how I've used "found recordings" to learn more about local history. That is the Paper Tape collection I feature on this web site..

I had several requests that I post the video of the presentation online. This recording is from November 15, 2012 and runs about an 1 hour. Click here to go to the video

A look back at Ray Briem

Posted: December 16, 2012

Ray Briem was the king of late night radio for many years. Based out of KABC or KLAC, he was a friend to those of us who toiled away on the mignight shift. Ray passed away recently and I thought I'd post one of his shows that features Old Time Radio. In this show he interviews George Balzer, a writer for Jack Benny, and John and Larry Gassman from SPERDVAC.

This recording is from June 25, 1988 and runs 1 hour, 57 minutes. Click here to play or right-click to download (File size: 10 megabytes)

Television interview about this site

Posted: December 4, 2012

Our local CBS affliate, KTVQ, interviewed me about the tapes I feature on the Paper Tape Archive page. You can view the video on their site here. The story ran Sunday, December 2, 2012.

1991 Interview with SPERDVAC

Posted: November 25, 2012

I was digging around in a box of old cassettes and came across this recording that my mother made for me. It is an interview with Susan Crawford, a member of SPERDVAC, on the Paul Wallach Show. This was broadcast on April 18, 1991 on KIEV 870 in Glendale, CA. The station as it was no longer exists and Paul Wallach passed away in 2002.

In this recording, which runs 42:36, the very beginning is missing and I've removed the local commercials and coverage of the race results at Santa Anita. Paul and Susan discuss and play exerpts from many of the shows of the Golden Age of radio.

Click here to play or right-click to download (File size: 10 megabytes)

October 30, 1938

Posted: November 2, 2012

Most of us readily recognize that title date for the broadcast of the Mercury Radio Theater's version of "The War of the Worlds." While there are plenty of places where one can download that show, I made a copy with a twist.

Broadcasting on NBC at the same time was the Chase and Sanborn Hour with Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy. I have combined the two programs into one stereo mp3 with the Mercury Theater in the left channel and Chase and Sanborn Hour in the right.

You can now use your mp3 player's "balance" control to listen to just the Chase and Sanborn show until Nelson Eddy starts to sing and then "channel surf" over to the Mercury show and hear what listeners encountered picking that show up in progress.

Click here to play or right-click to download (File size: 27.9 megabytes)

Norman Corwin and Ray Bradbury

Posted: June 13, 2012

Listen to an interview with Norman Corwin and Ray Bradbury from March 31, 1989. This is from the show "Hour 25" on KPFK (Los Angeles). The show was 2 hours in length but I've just taken the interview portion which runs 1 hour 38 minutes.

Click here to play or right-click to download (File size: 46.2 megabytes)