Crime & Murder on MPIR
For the main stream how about some crime and murder old time radio shows? Here's a brief description of what's playing.
Dragnet, the brainchild of Jack Webb, may very well be the most well-remembered, and the best, radio police drama series. From September, 1949 through February 1957, Dragnet's 30 minute shows, broadcast on NBC, brought to radio true police stories in a low-key, documentary style.
Escape brings together everything that was good about old-time radio drama rolled into one. The title itself almost sums up the very essence of what radio drama is all about. Each of the episodes was a micro drama carefully planned to capture the listeners attention for thirty minutes.
Suspense One of the premier drama programs of the Golden Age of Radio, was subtitled "radio's outstanding theater of thrills" and focused on suspense thriller-type scripts, usually featuring leading Hollywood actors of the era. Suspense went through several major phases, characterized by different hosts, sponsors, and director/producers. Formula plot devices were followed for all but a handful of episodes: the protagonist was usually a normal person suddenly dropped into a threatening or bizarre situation; solutions were "withheld until the last possible second"; and evildoers were usually punished in the end.
The MPIR Comedy OTR stream is playing some of the following:
Ed Wynn The Fire Chief Fire Chief ran from 1932 to 1935 and was a variety show that featured comedy and music that featured The Fire Chief Quartet, The Fire Chief Band and Ed Wynn. The roots of Texaco Star Theater were in a 1930s radio hit, Ed Wynn, the Fire Chief, featuring the manic "Perfect Fool" in a half hour of vaudevillian routines interspersed with music.
Burns and Allen, an American comedy duo consisting of George Burns and his wife, Gracie Allen, worked together as a comedy team in vaudeville, films, radio and television and achieved great success over four decades. Burns wrote most of the material and played the straight man. Allen played a silly, addle-headed woman, a role often attributed to the "Dumb Dora" stereotype common in early 20th-century vaudeville comedy. Early on, the team had played the opposite roles until they noticed that the audience was laughing at Gracie's straight lines, so they made the change. In later years, each attributed their success to the other.
The Old Gold Comedy Theater aired over NBC for one season, from October 29, 1944 to June 10, 1945. The show was patterned after the successful format used by the Lux Radio Theatre and Cecil B. DeMille. Preston Sturges, an up and coming director, was originally tapped to host the show, but was already committed elsewhere, and so suggested Harold Lloyd, a silent film star, with whom he had worked in the past. It featured some of the best-known film and radio personalities of the day, including Fred Allen, June Allyson, Lucille Ball, Ralph Bellamy, Linda Darnell, Susan Hayward, Herbert Marshall, Dick Powell, Edward G. Robinson, Jane Wyman, and Alan Young, among others.