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Jack Benny on Why He Preferred Television Over Radio

On Jack Carney's June 20th, 1983 Comedy Program, he played a portion of an interview with the late Jack Benny, recorded some years earlier. In this clip Jack says he preferred television over radio and why.


The Story Behind Our Miss Brooks

This audio is a section from BW - EP87: New Year's Day On the Air (1946 - 1956) Eve Arden broke into radio on The Danny Kaye show in 1945 before co-starring with Jack Haley in 1946, and with Jack Carson on The Sealtest Village Store in 1947. None of the roles stuck and her interest in radio was at a low ebb. Our Miss Brooks premiered on July 19th, 1948, airing for almost nine years. The head writer and director was Al Lewis. The program co-starred Jeff Chandler as Philip Boynton, the bashful...


Radio Director Himan Brown on Bringing Dick Tracy to Radio

In June of 1991, famed Radio producer and director Himan Brown was in Chicago at the Museum of Broadcast Communications where he was interviewed by fellow Radio Hall of Fame member Chuck Schaden (full interview here - During the course of their extensive conversation, Brown spoke about how he secured the rights to, and brought Dick Tracy to radio airwaves.


The Danny Kaye Program—10/26/1945 Jack Benny and His Cast Guest Host on CBS

Unusually, the Friday October 26, 1945 broadcast of the Danny Kaye Show, airing on the CBS radio network, featured Jack Benny and practically the entire cast of the Jack Benny show filling in for Kaye, who was on a USO Tour. It's not considered part of Jack Benny's season, although in the New York Times Radio Programming Listings from Sunday October 21, it lists Friday's 10:30PM time slot on CBS's WABC affiliate as "Jack Benny, Comedy. This program would occur more than three years before...


Radio Director Jack Johnstone Explains His In-Studio Directing Methods

In the late 1980s, famed radio director and writer (Superman, The Six Shooter, Johnny Dollar) Jack Johnstone was in California to be interviewed by SPERDVAC. During the course of the interview, he explained how his radio directing methods were different from most other directors.


Jack Benny On The Importance of Organic Character Development

In June of 1983, Jack Carney broadcast a two-part audio documentary on the life and career of Jack Benny featuring interviews and recollections with the cast, and audio from the show. During the first part of the documentary the late Jack Benny, in an interview recorded years before, spoke of the importance of organic character and joke development on the Jack Benny Program. This audio comes courtesy of Goodmond H. Danielson III. Breaking Walls Episode 88 will spotlight Jack Benny's 1945-46...


Ingrid Bergman on the Jack Benny Program—10/14/1945

On the October 14th, 1945 episode of the Lucky Strike Jack Benny Program, Ingrid Bergman was the guest. The two performed a satire of a scene from Bergman's 1944 film hit, "Gaslight." The scene is ripe with topical humor and humor central to Jack Benny's show.


Dennis Day on How His Character Was Written to Annoy Jack Benny

On Easter Sunday in April of 1982, Dennis Day was a guest of John Dunning's on 71K Newstalk radio in Denver, CO. They spoke about Day's life and career—especially his quarter-century association with Jack Benny. During the course of the interview day tells a funny story on how his character was written specifically to annoy Jack Benny's.


Radio Actress Shirley Mitchell On How She Got Started in Hollywood

In October of 1984, Chuck Schaden sat down with actress Shirley Mitchell for a conversation about her life and career (full interview here - During the course of the chat, Shirley explained how she made it out to the West Coast from Chicago.


Press Agent Steve Bradley's First Appearance on The Jack Benny Program—09/30/1945

During the debut episode of the 1945-46 Season of Jack Benny's Lucky Strike Program, a new character—Press Agent Steve Bradley—was introduced. Bradley was voiced by Dick Lane, The character would play a significant role for the remained of 1945.


The Story Behind On Stage With Cathy and Elliott Lewis

While by the 1952-53 season, radio audiences were leaving in droves, the networks were still willing to invest resources in the medium. Radio was also being left to the radio people, which allowed for creative growth. On Thursday January 1st, 1953, at 8:30PM, Cathy and Elliott Lewis, known as “Mr. and Mrs. Radio,” debuted a new dramatic anthology program over CBS airwaves called On Stage. On Stage came during radio’s last hurrah. The big money was quickly leaving, but agencies and producers...


BW - EP87: New Year's Day On the Air (1946 - 1956)

In Breaking Walls episode 87, we spotlight some New Year’s Day radio programming from the Golden Age of radio, specifically beginning in 1946 after the end of World War II and television's post-war rise. Highlights: • Skelton • Casey Crime Photographer and the Invasion of TV • Radio City Playhouse and Our Miss Brooks • The Railroad Hour and NBC’s Monday Night of Music • Memories from the 1939-40 World’s Fair • On Stage with Mr. and Mrs. Radio • The Greatest Western • Radio Drama’s Demise The...


Norman Corwin, Byron Kane, and Bethel Merriday on CBS' Forecast—8/26/1940

This audio is a section from BW - EP80: Forecast—The Most Important Forgotten Series in Radio History (1940 - 1941) ____ On August 26th, 1940 Norman Corwin directed a pilot called “Bethel Merriday” based on the 1940 novel, written Sinclair Lewis for CBS' summer pilot series, Forecast. The play was adapted for Forecast by Helen Deutsch. The radio play starred Howard Da Silva as Mr. Keizer, Margaret Sullavan as Bethel, and a debuting 17-year old Byron Kane as Charlie Hatch. Thanks, in part, to...


The Story Behind Frank Sinatra's Rocky Fortune and To Be Perfectly Frank

This audio is a section from BW - EP85: From Hoboken to Eternity—Frank Sinatra's Radio Career (1935-1955) ____ Thanks to “From Here to Eternity,” Sinatra was again on the rise. He was, however, still broke. NBC radio presented two new radio opportunities to Frank. On October 6th, 1953, at Radio City West on Sunset and Vine, Frank Sinatra taped the first episode of a new detective series called Rocky Fortune. The show premiered that Tuesday evening at 9:30. Sinatra played the title character,...


Radio Programming From The Week Between Christmas and The New Year—1945

The week between Christmas and New Year’s can sometimes be spent returning unappreciated gifts. That’s exactly what was happening on Dinah Shore’s Bird’s Eye Open House broadcast on December 27th. Her guest star for the evening was Groucho Marx. In this skit, the two attempt to return the bird cage that announcer Harry Von Zell gifted Dinah.


Elliott Lewis on How He Got Into Radio Directing

In the 1980s, radio writer/actor/director/producer Elliott Lewis was a guest of John Dunning on his 71K Newstalk Radio program out of Denver, CO. During the course of this wide-ranging interview, Lewis spoke about how he got into radio directing. Lewis will be heavily featured in Breaking Walls Episode 87: New Year's Day on the Air, which will be available beginning January 1st, 2019 everywhere you get your podcasts and at


The Great Gildersleeve—12/23/1945—The Family and Leila Open Their Christmas Gifts

This clip comes from the December 23rd, 1945 episode of The Great Gildersleeve, which aired Sunday at 6:30PM for East coast audiences, but was recorded at NBC's KFI Studios in Los Angeles. A second broadcast was done at 8PM for west coast audiences. In the clip, Gildersleeve and the family open their Christmas gifts.


Radio Announcer Tony Marvin on the Importance of Announcer Flexibility

In the spring of 1973, longtime radio announcer Tony Marvin sat down with Dick Bertel and Ed Corcoran for WTIC's The Golden Age of Radio to discuss his life and career (full interview here - during the course of the interview Marvin explained why it was so important for a staff announcer to be able to handle a wide variety of news, sports, and product hawking.


Radio Stories From Christmas Week 1945

Sunday night’s highest rated comedy was The Charlie McCarthy Show starring Edgar Bergen and his famous ventriloquist dummy, Charlie McCarthy. Edgar Bergen had first come to the attention of American audiences on Rudy Vallée’s NBC Royal Gelatin Hour on December 17th, 1936. Five months later NBC gave Bergen his own show on Sundays at 8PM. Bergen and his wise-cracking alter-ego held onto that time slot until 1953. How could ventriloquism work on radio? Perhaps Rudy Vallée himself put it best...


Musical Director Rex Koury on Writing Gunsmoke's Famous Theme

In the 1970s musician and composer Rex Koury sat down for a documentary interview on Gunsmoke. During the course of the chat he explained how he came to be associated with the show, and how he composed the music, including the famous theme.