The Great Detectives of Old Time Radio The great ones are back in action.

6Jan/130

Radio’s Most Essential People Countdown: #28-#27

Previous Posts: 30-2933-3136-3439-3742-4045-4348-4651-4954-5257-5560-58,

65-6170-66,  71-7576-8081-8586-9091-9596-100

Gordon MacRae28 Gordon MacRae

As an up and coming singer, Macrae was featured in a couple of fifteen minute musical programs including CBS Skyline Roof from 1945-46, the Syndicated Gulf Spray program that aired in 1947. Then in 1948, he became host of the Texaco Star Theater, a program which had featured such luminaries as Ed Wynn and Fred Allen. His magnificent singing voice and chemistry with star Evelyn Knight led to his greatest radio job, star of the Railroad Hour. The program began over ABC as a 45 minute program which adapted major musicals to radio. The program would go to a more normal 30 minute length and switch networks but it would spend six seasons putting on big productions even while radio began to give way to television. McaRae brought audiences programs such as State Fair, Showboat, Brigadoon, and even performed roles he would later play on screen in Oklahoma and Carousel.

The program went beyond just musicals. The Railroad Hour produced Summer Specials recalling the great tunes of past years, created original musicals, as well as specials paying tribute to those who made the world's musical heritage so rich. Throughout the show's run, MacRae's dynamic voice and his charisma were what made the show. He worked well and clicked with singer/actresses such as Marian Hutton, Francis Langford, Dinah Shore, and Margaret Truman, along with regulars like Lucille Norman, Dorothy Kirsten, and Dorothy Warenskjold.

27) Bud Collyer

Bud CollyerBud Collyer has more than 20,000 radio credits. Most of these were as announcers or as a game show host.  He announced on such a variety of programs as Jungle Jim, Cavalcade of America, the Road of Life, and The Guiding Light.  He also spent eleven years as host of TV's Beat the Clock. 

However, all this pales when compared to his greatest radio great.  He was the 1940s most widely heard Superman. He played the role from 1940-50 over radio in addition to starring in the legendary Fleischer role. Superman, in many ways was one of the most challenging characters to bring to radio. His comic book exploits were fantastic. To convey that excitement in aural medium was a great challenge.  Collyer was the actor to pull it off. His delivery was exciting and  well-paced. He kept a distinct "Clark" and "Superman" voice that helped listeners know when he was in which identity.

Collyer's creation of a successful and believable radio Superman makes him an indispensable part of radio's golden age. While Collyer left the role in 1950, it was permanent. He'd return to voice Superman once again for the 1960s filmation cartoons.

If you enjoyed this post, you can have new posts about Detective stories and the golden age of radio and television delivered automatically to your Kindle.

   

Subscribers

Pages

Friends of the Show

GAR Links

Great OTR LInks

Other Old Time Radio Shows

November 2014
M T W T F S S
« Oct    
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930

Tags

Categories

Archives