Friday, October 30, 2020

Halloween, Hollywood Style

Once again, it's time for our annual Halloween photos!

Audrey Ferris

Betty Grable

Joyce Holden

Anne Shirley, Carol Stone and Rosina Lawrence

Judy Garland

June Lang

Leila Haymes

Lillian Wells

Friday, October 16, 2020

List of "Lost" LONE RANGER Radio Programs (1950-1954)

Just as "Nitrate won't wait" became the rallying cry for film archivists, "Acetate won't wait" has become the mantra for collectors of old-time radio. Widely used for three decades (1930s through the 1950s), then slowly replaced with magnetic tape and other formats, radio broadcasts featuring comedy, music and drama were preserved for both commercial and historical purposes. Fans of old-time radio programs, and fans of The Lone Ranger in general, are fully aware of the 2,600 radio broadcasts from 1938 to 1954 that were preserved thanks to this format. Over 2,000 of those radio episodes have been released commercially thanks to companies like Radio Spirits, which commercially releases CD sets periodically through the months through licensing agreements. For over almost two decades I have purchased those Lone Ranger sets from Radio Spirits and have built a large shrine in my house. 



Due to their rarity, some acetate discs can command high prices at auction but those "record prices" are often the exceptions to the rule. Brian Epstein's collection of Beatles acetates fetched between $1,000 and $10,000 per disc, and an acetate of Elvis Presley's "That's All Right" sold for $82,393. When it comes to The Lone Ranger radio program, the broadcasts were preserved on vinyl pressings for syndication purposes, not acetate discs, so they would never fetch those kind of prices. Yet, there are collectors who mistakenly believe what they have is worth thousands of dollars. The average sale price for a set of two Lone Ranger discs is about $35 on eBay, more depending on whether the recording is rare or not. And it seems no one ever bids on Lone Ranger vinyl pressings that ask for more than $60 as a starting bid. (AFRS renditions of The Lone Ranger, also on vinyl pressings, appear to go for about $5 to $10 each on eBay.)


All of which emphasizes the importance of supporting companies like Radio Spirits. Considering the price of a Radio Spirits box set (five of them pictured above) retails less than $40 each, and you receive 20 half-hour radio programs in a box set, which comes to less than $2 per recording, you can understand why people choose to purchase the CDs versus collecting the vinyl pressings. 


The following is an official list of "lost" radio programs from 1950 to 1954. This list was compiled from multiple box sets, CDs and audio cassette albums that I purchased over the past two decades -- in short, these are the only episodes I am missing in my personal collection and it appears no one has a copy of these. Without such a list, collectors would never know if what they have is truly rare or not. Lists like these were created for other programs and often resulted in a few episodes being discovered because a collector had one and never knew it was a rare or lost recording.


The episode numbers and broadcast dates are listed below. Take note: these are the episode numbers, not transcription disc numbers. To avoid confusion, please go by the broadcast date. For completists, this list will give collectors cause to seek out recordings they do not have. For those who want to know the value of extant Lone Ranger transcriptions, these are the episodes that would more than likely generate larger bids on auction. But if someone holds a "lost" show at ransom prices, consider walking away. And if someone claims to have a lost program but will not verify authenticity, also consider walking away. As shocking as this advice might sound to a few, in retrospect there are already over 2,000 radio broadcasts available to listen to.


In the process of reading all of the radio scripts for The Lone Ranger, and documenting the plot summaries (my episode guide is more than 1,000 pages and still under construction), I can easily verify a recording if someone claims to have one listed below. Verification is essential before removing an entry from the list. With unscrupulous mp3 vendors duplicating existing audio files and renaming them with fake broadcast dates and titles, I will not remove an episode from this list simply because someone claims to have it. If you send me a recording and it turns out not to be a "lost" episode on the list, as a courtesy I will provide you with the correct information so you can catalog your inventory appropriately.


The first list was posted last month for the "lost" episodes from 1938 to 1949.

 

This list will be updated as recordings are discovered and verified. Do you have any of these?


Episode #            Title             Broadcast Date                       

2646-1871  "Sword of Honor"  (January 2, 1950)

2650-1875  "Printer's Lead"  (January 11, 1950)

2651-1876  "Matter of Proof"  (January 13, 1950)

2652-1877  "The Town Bully"  (January 16, 1950)

2653-1878  "End of the Yuma Kid"  (January 18, 1950)

2654-1879  "Banner of Virginia"  (January 20, 1950)

2663-1888  "Eagle Pass"  (February 10, 1950)

2665-1890  "The Adventure of the Long-Haired Man"  (February 15, 1950)

2666-1891  "One Man Rule"  (February 17, 1950)

2667-1892  "One Night in Dodge"  (February 20, 1950)

2668-1893  "Retired Ranger"  (February 22, 1950)

2669-1894  "Chuck Gurnee's Downfall" (February 24, 1950)

2670-1895  "Two Gold Lockets"  (February 27, 1950)

2671-1896  "Hobey's Rifles"  (March 1, 1950)

2707-1932  "A Drink of Water"  (May 24, 1950)

2708-1933  "The Ace of Death"  (May 26, 1950)

2709-1934  "Politics and Cattle Ticks"  (May 29, 1950)

2716-1941  "Call to the Colors"  (June 14, 1950) *

2718-1943  "Jonathan's Cabin"  (June 19, 1950)

2722-1947  "Counsel for the Defense"  (June 28, 1950)

2723-1948  "Paid in Full"  (June 30, 1950)

2724-1949  "Barnaby Boggs and his Self Respect"  (July 3, 1950)

2726-1951  "A Lone Ranger Origin"  (July 7, 1950)

2728-1952  "Undercover Agent"  (July 12, 1950)

2729-1953  "The Sole Survivor"  (July 14, 1950)

2730-1954  "Plan for Revenge"  (July 17, 1950)

2732-1956  "The Missing Cattle"  (July 21, 1950)

2734-1958  "The Iron Deer"  (July 26, 1950)

2735-1959  "Tenderfoot Sheepman"  (July 28, 1950)

2736-1960  "For the Good of All"  (July 31, 1950)

2737-1961  "Joel Melton's Son"  (August 2, 1950)

2739-1963  "A Pigeon Called Pablo"  (August 7, 1950)

2770-1994  "The Tattooed Arm"  (October 18, 1950)                    

2786-2010  "The Colonel's Son"  (November 24, 1950)

2789-2013  "The Halsted Roundup"  (December 1, 1950)

2790-2014  "The Range Fence"  (December 4, 1950)

2806-2030  "Before the Firing Squad"  (January 10, 1951)

2818-2042  "Partners in Crime"  (February 7, 1951)

2819-2043  "The Shiny Knife Blade"  (February 9, 1951)

2825-2049  "Hired for Murder"  (February 23, 1951)                  

2826-2050  "Adventure in the Rain"  (February 26, 1951)

2829-2053  "The Red Roan"  (March 5, 1951)

2832-2056  "Trader Boggs"  (March 12, 1951)

2833-2057  "The Actor Outlaw"  (March 14, 1951)

2834-2058  "Indian Charlie"  (March 16, 1951)

2835-2059  "One Little Indian"  (March 19, 1951)

2836-2060  "Ear Rings for Gretchen"  (March 21, 1951)

2837-2061  "Valley of the Silver Ghosts"  (March 23, 1951)

2838-2062  "Red, White and Renegade"  (March 26, 1951)

2839-2063  "El Toro"  (March 28, 1951)

2840-2064  "The Murder Trap"  (March 30, 1951)

2843-2067  "Son by Adoption"  (April 6, 1951)

2844-2068  "Army Nurse"  (April 9, 1951)

2845-2069  "Trail to Death"  (April 11, 1951)

2846-2070  "Shadow of the Gallows"  (April 13, 1951)

2848-2072  "Rustler's Hideout"  (April 18, 1951)

2849-2073  "Army Scout's Gold"  (April 20, 1951)

2851-2075  "Tumblerock Law"  (April 25, 1951)

2852-2076  "The Outlaw's Sister"  (April 27, 1951)

2854-2078  "The Forged Requisition"  (May 2, 1951)

2855-2079  "Words and Ammunition"  (May 4, 1951)

2856-2080  "Picklock Perkins"  (May 7, 1951)

2857-2081  "Misplaced Friendship"  (May 9, 1951)

2859-2083  "Mystery Hotel"  (May 14, 1951)

2862-2086  "The Death Trap"  (May 21, 1951)

2863-2087  "Double Ambush"  (May 23, 1951)

2864-2088  "Sinners by Proxy"  (May 25, 1951)

2877-2101  "The Packet"  (June 25, 1951)

2884-2108  "Fire and Water"  (July 11, 1951)

2885-2109  "Man of Many Faces"  (July 13, 1951)

2887-2111  "Case Against Tonto"  (July 18, 1951)

2888-2112  "Dead Men Don't Talk"  (July 20, 1951)

2889-2113  "The Rescue"  (July 23, 1951)

2890-2114  "In Search of Evidence"  (July 25, 1951)

2891-2115  "Border Scheme"  (July 27, 1951)

2892-2116  "The Banning Death Plot"  (July 30, 1951)

2893-2117  "Marla's Country-Man"  (August 1, 1951)

2894-2118  "Callahan's Clock"  (August 3, 1951)

2896-2120  "Man Missing"  (August 8, 1951)

2905-2129  "Gold is Where You Find It"  (August 29, 1951)

2906-2130  "The Elusive Spy"  (August 31, 1951)

2907-2131  "Ace and Two of a  Kind"  (September 3, 1951)

2908-2132  "Action for Thunder"  (September 5, 1951)

2909-2133  "The Baited Trap"  (September 7, 1951)

2911-2135  "The Step-Brother"  (September 12, 1951)

2913-2137  "Night Stage"  (September 17, 1951)

2914-2138  "Death for Sale"  (September 19, 1951)

2917-2141  "Garland's Grudge"  (September 26, 1951)

2921-2145  "Stage Fright"  (October 5, 1951)

2924-2148  "Special Investigator"  (October 12, 1951)

2928-2152  "Gunmen of Pecos Valley"  (October 22, 1951)

2929-2153  "The Navajo Trail"  (October 24, 1951)

2930-2154  "End of the Quest"  (October 26, 1951)

2931-2155  "The Great Bend Settlement"  (October 29, 1951)

2935-2159  "The Search"  (November 7, 1951)

2937-2161  "Stage to Big Bend"  (November 12, 1951)

2938-2162  "The Jesse Chase Mine"  (November 14, 1951)

2939-2163  "Witness to Crime"  (November 16, 1951)

2941-2165  "The Hold-Up at Sandy Point"  (November 21, 1951)

2945-2169  "The Bounty Hunter"  (November 30, 1951)

2946-2170  "Loot and a Boot"  (December 3, 1951)

2947-2171  "The Flaming Barrier"  (December 5, 1951)

2949-2173  "The First Snowfall"  (December 10, 1951)

2950-2174  "Guns of Jeopardy"  (December 12, 1951)

2951-2175  "Stranger in the Storm"  (December 14, 1951)

2952-2176  "The Land Grab"  (December 17, 1951)

2953-2177  "Desperado at Large"  (December 19, 1951)

2955-2179  "Faith and the Doctor"  (December 24, 1951)

2956-2180  "Nancy Appleton's Hero"  (December 26, 1951)

2958-2182  "Crime at Umbrella Rock"  (December 31, 1951)

2972-2196  "Homecoming"  (February 1, 1952)

2974-2198  "When Disaster Strikes"  (February 6, 1952)

2986-2210  "The Lost Trail"  (March 5, 1952)

3028-2252  "Law for Calamity"  (June 11, 1952)

3029-2253  "End of the Chase"  (June 13, 1952)

3030-2254  "Zanzibar"  (June 16, 1952)

3031-2255  "Wagon of Refuge"  (June 18, 1952)

3032-2256  "The Fannin' Kid"  (June 20, 1952)

3033-2257  "Wall of Fire"  (June 23, 1952)

3035-2259  "A Piece of Silver"  (June 27, 1952)

3036-2260  "Sal Hawkins Comes Home"  (June 30, 1952)

3037-2261  "Change of Plans"  (July 2, 1952)

3038-2262  "Apache Pass"  (July 4, 1952)

3039-2263  "The Long Bridge"  (July 7, 1952)

3041-2265  "Moose Miller's Fall"  (July 11, 1952)

3042-2266  "The Lost Years"  (July 14, 1952)

3043-2267  "War in Wyoming"  (July 16, 1952)

3044-2268  "Murder Hunt"  (July 18, 1952)

3045-2269  "The Eagle Tattoo"  (July 21, 1952)

3046-2270  "Incident on the Outskirts"  (July 23, 1952)

3047-2271  "The Loaded Burros"  (July 25, 1952)

3048-2272  "West of Deadwood"  (July 28, 1952)

3049-2273  "The Invalid"  (July 30, 1952)

3050-2274  "Small Gold Nugget"  (August 1, 1952)

3051-2275  "Dollars of Doom"  (August 4, 1952)

3052-2276  "The Barricade"  (August 6, 1952)

3053-2277  "Race Against Time"  (August 8, 1952)

3054-2278  "The Young Sister"  (August 11, 1952)

3055-2279  "Savage Justice"  (August 13, 1952)

3056-2280  "Empty Water Barrel"  (August 15, 1952)

3057-2281  "The Slave-Runners"  (August 18, 1952)

3058-2282  "The Hermit of Mile High"  (August 20, 1952)

3059-2283  "The Canvas Suitcase"  (August 22, 1952)

3060-2284  "Condemned Men"  (August 25, 1952)

3061-2285  "The Long Trail"  (August 27, 1952)

3062-2286  "The Secret Valley"  (August 29, 1952)

3063-2287  "Ex-Marshal"  (September 1, 1952)

3064-2288  "Lone Cedar"  (September 3, 1952)

3112-2336  "The Morning Star"  (December 24, 1952)

3315-2535  "Go-Between"  (April 12, 1954)

3317-2537  "The Thief"  (April 16, 1954)


This list will be updated as recordings are discovered and verified. Do you have any of these?


UPDATE: September 1, 2022. Four episodes from 1954 have been removed from the list, recordings found and verified existing.


Friday, October 2, 2020

JOHN ZACHERLE AND "BEYOND THE END"

Anyone who grew up in New York City during the late fifties would recall John Zacherle as the ghoulish host of late-night horror movies, providing dark humor between the commercial breaks much in the same manner as Raymond on radio’s Inner Sanctum Mystery. As part of the Shock Theatre package, those movies included the likes of Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Lon Chaney, Jr. and Peter Lorre. So it may come as no surprise that on the evenings of February 25, March 4 and March 11, 1959, Zacherle tried his hand as a ghoulish host on late-night radio with a short-lived series titled Beyond the End.


Advertised as “a three-program mystery series with a comic twist,” through an NBC press release, the program aired from 10:06 to 10:28 p.m. Certain newspapers listed the program on radio logs as “World’s Literature,” with no reference to the horror host or what specific dramatic readings were scheduled. The horror dramas consisted of Nelson Olmsted’s dramatic readings from commercial LP records released in 1956. Among the spooky dramas presented were Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart” and “The Black Cat.” As for Zacherle, his gig as a radio horror host was short-lived. 

Zacherle was a celebrity guest at the Friends of Old-Time Radio convention many years ago but sadly, no one was apparently aware of the radio program and asking Zacherle myself about the program he could only remember going to the radio station to do his spiel before the microphone. Nothing memorable to recall.

Since the programs aired over NBC radio live, the closest we can come to hearing any rendition of his spook-tacular radio performance are his LP records issued from 1960 to 1963, Spook Along with ZacherlyMonster MashScary Tales Featuring John Zacherly and Zacherle’s Monster Gallery. It seems unlikely whether we will be able to verify whether or not his 1958 top-ten novelty rock and roll song, “Dinner With Drac,” was featured on any of the three broadcasts, quite possibly as the program’s theme song? 


Special Thanks to Steven Thompson, Michael Biel and David Lennick for their assistance.