With April, 2021 about to expire, I thought I'd better try to keep my streak going, of posting twice a month for 15 straight months now.
Let's start with something ridiculous.
Almost two years ago, I shared a tape of one Mary Davidson offering a screed against the United Nations on what was "Tape Four" of a series, and I bemoaned that I didn't have any other parts. Well, it turns out I do have at least one other part, which I came across last week.
So, without further ado, here, again, is Mary Davidson to tell us more things we need to know about that terrible, awful, no good, very bad United Nations.
As a bonus, or perhaps a punishment, this tape features another John Bircher, Hugh A. Locke, Jr., heard here in the second of three parts (parts one and three, presumably, were on the b-sides of Mary Davidson's tapes numbered one and three), of a speech at a New England Rally.
On to something more entertaining. I know people have enjoyed the slide show presentation tapes that I've shared in the past, and here I have another one. And OH, how I wish I could see the slides in this case, as the description makes them sound deeply entertaining.
This was recorded for what was apparently the first in a series of slide shows, made for a troop of Boy Scouts, in an attempt to teach them First Aid. In this first episode, the slides, and the narration, are concerned with what to do when someone has fallen off of rocks onto other rocks (and glass), what to do when someone "has drowned" (the narrator's term, not mine - I would think First Aid in such a case would be a bit too late), and in the event of electrical shock.
I think you'll agree with me that when you want to teach children how to save someone who is injured, a slide show beats a live demonstration every time, and the areas to start with, due to their immense likelihood, would be a fall onto rocks, a drowning and an electric shock.
At the end of the segment I'm sharing, we're told that further slides will follow, of a recent "camperee", but unfortunately, the accompaniment was simply a series of instrumental marches, so I faded the tape out.
Download: Narration for Scouting First Aid Slides
Last October, I shared a Stereo Demonstration Reel from the Voice of Music company. And today, I have another one, again from the dawn of Stereo recording, in this case from a company called "Sonotape"
Like other tapes of this genre, this tape attempts to demonstrate the versatility and breadth of what stereo tape can bring you, and the variety of material available from the label, from classical to pop to sound effects. In the case of this tape, and I'm not sure this is a positive, our narrator is accompanied by a cartoonish voiced sidekick who shows up now and then, but who states his name in the final moments, almost as if we were supposed to know who he was, all along.
Along the way, we do get to here a magical track from those early, experimental and fascinating albums by Ferrante and Teicher, and that's the highlight for me.
Note the high quality sound you are hearing here. This tape is about 64 years old. In a few weeks, I'll be sharing another demonstration reel of the same vintage which has not held up so well.
Finally, I will quote here from something I wrote back in October, which applies here, again:
Because this tape dates to the days when "Stereo" meant two channels recorded across the entire width of the tape (and not the four channel, two direction style which became the industry standard by the end of the '50's), we're technically only hearing half of the programming here. It's still in stereo, but my more modern stereo machine is only playing half of each signal. I hope that makes sense.
Download: Sonotape Inline Demonstration Reel
And now it's time for episode three of my new series, "Acetate of the Month". In today's offering, we have what seems to be a few minutes from a show called "Surprise Package", a segment in which a puppy was given away to a child. One hopes - as the host claims - that the parents of the winning child were on the same page with the show's host and producers. The name on the label is the name of the child interviewed during almost the entire length of the acetate. It's not clear if she was awarded the puppy, but either way, I suspect this acetate was given to her after the show. Perhaps each child interviewed got an acetate with their segment.
By the way, can you believe she gives her address and phone number out? Although it appears that she was visiting another town at the time, and it's doubtful anyone from her home town would be listening. Still, it was certainly a different time and place, eh? There is also a deeply uncomfortable moment here, which I'll let you experience without further comment.
The acetate contains the exact same recording of the same broadcast on both sides, and it looks like this:
And here's the acetate:
Here is our "Very Short Reel" for this posting. Three inch reels can be deceiving - depending on the thickness of the tape and the speed at which they're recorded, they can be filled up complete and last barely a minute (a thicker tape recorded at 15 IPS), or close to a half hour of material (1 thinner tape recorded at 1 7/8 IPS).
In this case, we have one of the briefest audio letters ever, with a recording at 7 1/2 IPS taking up barely the first minute of tape on one side; the rest of the tape is blank. And for me, this recording brings up a whole host of questions. The narrator - Jerry - claims to be in Times Square, and seems to have quite the story to tell to his friend - Jinx - and even says it was going to be easier to tell him on tape than in a letter. But then... he doesn't explain what sounds like quite the experience.
Listen for yourself!: