Sunday, June 25, 2017

Herman Griffith 1965


"Hello Gang!  Here's Herman Griffith with exitement in sound and music in motion!! The rock AND the roll for the young and the old, the brave and the bold on the Record Caravan!!!! "

Don Browne shares some memories:

"When I first heard "The Herman Griffith Show" on AFRTS (at FEN in 1969), I was appalled.


He was "stepping on" the starting vocal (later called "the post") of every song, "talking over" the entire lyric of many songs, and worst of all, mispronouncing AFRTS. Griffith called it "Aye-Eff-Argh-ugh-Tee-Ess!

He was definitely relegated to the "vampire squad" (1 a.m. to 5 a.m.) on FEN!

It was two years later that I discovered what caused "the Herman Griffith syndrome".

I visited AFRTS-LA and took a closer look at their so-called "broadcast studios".

They had been designed as "recording studios" by a contractor who was told that "they were making records" at AFRTS-LA.
A true enough statement. But not making records like for orchestras and singers, with separate channels each with EQ, separate tape-recorder playback of selectable sources designed for multi-track, and combination of audio sources "down-stream" for multi-track. They initially didn't have "mute" when a microphone was "live" because "recording studios" didn't "mute" mikes.

A typical "recording studio", not for broadcasting purposes.

The multi-channel audio control consoles were manufactured by "Unidyne" for four studios at 1016 North McCadden Place in 1965.

When Herman Griffith recorded his show, he heard the music on playback from the tape recorder, two-seconds after the "live" recorder input. Playback was for confidence-only, to ensure that a recording was being made. Herman's voice was combined "down-stream", so Herman in natural radio procedure "cupped-his-ear" to hear his "live" voice.

Therefore, in real time, Herman stepped on every starting vocal.

The radio producers weren't experienced in the R&B format and thought this was normal.
The "Unidynes" were eventually replaced with "broadcast" consoles."

 This would have been the place to rock.  Roland Bynum said that Herman introduced him to the AFRTS gig.