Thursday, February 27, 2014

Johnny Grant - Small World 1967

Small World was a lot like Monitor, light music, interesting features tied together with talent.  George Church was the first host (discovering Chris Noel).  After George was Johnny Grant.  Johnny did a lot of programs for AFRTS.

Defense Secretary William S. Cohen greets Johnny Grant, Hollywood's ceremonial mayor and a veteran of 54 USO tours, during a military concert in Beverly Hills, Calif. Grant was the master of ceremonies of the Nov. 30 concert, hosted by DoD and the USO to honor the Hollywood film industry

Johnny Grant joined the Army Air Corps during World War II, hosting a daily radio show in New York City for servicemen and women. During this time, he interviewed many entertainment stars who were in the city. After his discharge, he stayed in New York, working as a reporter for station WINS.

Having moved to California, Grant appeared as a disc jockey on Los Angeles area radio stations KGIL (1949–50) and KMPC (1951–59)

Saturday, February 22, 2014

A Chat with Pete Pittman

Pete with Willie Nelson (on the left)
Pete Pittman was on AFRTS in Korea, Germany and Alaska.  Did the mandatory PAO time and even worked for the film branch in Los Angeles.  Musician, actor... That's a start.  It's a great story.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Jim Ameche - 1965

Jim Ameche had the most beautiful sounds around.  An hour of orchestral music, with just the right touch of personality.  Jim had knocked around in radio since the 1930s but hit his stride with syndicated DJ shows starting in the 1950s.  As the man that made syndicated DJ shows work he was a natural for the world's largest radio network.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

FEN Jim Harmon 1969

Stephen Weber brings us this memory.  It's 1969, the 24th anniversary of FEN and a Wonderful Weekend with Jim Harmon.  Jim was also the main anchor.  After that it's a clip of ...  we're not really sure.

FEN Yokota

Friday, February 14, 2014

Lionel Barrymore - Concert Hall 1948

Lionel Barrymore had a great love of classical music.  He wanted to do something for the troops.  Starting in WWII he hosted Concert Hall, a live classical music program.  On this visit Academy Award-winning music. The first selection is from, "The Song Of Bernadette." Lionel Barrymore (host), The Concert Hall Orchestra, Henry Svedrovski (conducting), Dorothy Warenskjold, Gilbert Russell

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Grand Old Opry - 1949

You can't tell the story of AFRTS without the Grand Old Opry. The Opry comes from WSM Nashville and started in the 1920s.  It was the prototype for stations all over the country and their live country shows.  When WWII came WSM made it available for the troops.  In the 1980s it was still going strong.  Here's a 1949 visit.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

From The Bookshelf of the World - 1946

As part of the education mission AFRTS would repackage classic stories that were broadcast on US radio.  This is James Fenimore Coopers story "The Spy" as originally performed on Tales of Adventure November 21, 1946

AFN Berlin - Last morning show

Hard to believe it's been almost 20 years since AFN Berlin.  In 1994 it was the last day.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Rockin' 1958

In the record libraries from the 1950s there wasn't much rock.  This 1958 pizza platter (16" disk) would have been sandwiched between hundreds of hours of broadway shows and big bands.  Stan Major told us AFN didn't play any Elvis when he was a tanker in Germany...

Friday, February 7, 2014

Sunday, February 2, 2014

AFKN - 1973

Recently Brian Hartzell found a cassette from his AFKN time in 1973.  Bits and pieces from the network.

Bobby Zix was a legend.  When I got to Ft Devens I worked with JJ Gould (where is he?)  He would go on about Kong.  Took three decades to hear the magic.  This tape was my first chance to actually hear him.  Thank you Brian!