Monday, November 6, 2017

"The Jeff Martin Case", and More!

I have three unrelated tapes today, shared with the hope that you'll find something of interest in at least one of them.

The first one presents more than a bit of a mystery. Several years ago, I acquired an ancient Concertone reel to reel tape machine - the same model as the one my father had bought way back in 1952, and which I've spoken about before. My brother and I hoped - and were rewarded in this - that it would work, and would more accurately and effectively play our beloved 1950's reels in the half-track mono in which they'd been recorded.

The owner of the machine - a man in his 80's - also donated to me all of his tapes, well over 100 of them. These proved to largely contain recordings of the local classical music organizations, of which he was a sometime member. These tapes have provided some interesting listening from time to time, but nothing I'd be likely to share here.

The outlier was a tape in a truly ancient Scotch box, labeled "old tape", and with a note that indicated it would only play correctly on the Concertone. The first item in our playlist today is the 17 minutes or so which are recorded on that tape. This seems to be a radio drama, perhaps titled "The Story Behind the Headlines", in this case, an episode about The Jeff Martin Case. The recording quality is quite good, and certainly doesn't sound like an over-the-air recording, so this may have been a studio reel.

But I can find no record of this show ever existing, and, sadly, the entire show is not contained on the tape - it ends with a teaser about more information yet to come. But what's there is certainly entertaining and sort of fascinating.

Download: The Story Behind the Headlines - The Jeff Martin Case

Next up, here are the 14 minutes that make up a tape simply labeled "Northrop Sounds", starting with the track "Space Mice", followed soon after by "Earthquake Ernie", and then moving on into other equally interesting sounds. Before playing it, I'd assumed this tape came from the Northrop Corporation, but very little, if anything, heard here seems related to the manufacturing of aircraft.

Download: Northrop Sounds

And finally, just a reminder. Check your phone book.

I mean it. Check your damn phone book. Maybe then he'll shut up.

Download: Check Your Phone Book


  1. "Check Your Phone Book" guy sounds maddeningly familiar but I can't quite place him. Tone and delivery are similar to James A. FitzPatrick of TRAVELTALKS fame - perhaps it's him?

  2. I've checked my phone book, but I can't find the number of any Standard Oil man.

  3. Interesting sound effects. I'm going to look for my phone book now...
    Thanks, Bob!

  4. There is a website that offers a CD of "The Story Behind the Headlines." It offers a brief explanation about the program and it's host.

  5. Thanks for the link, Flick - it appears, though, that that is an entirely different show than the one I have excerpted - every episode of that show is about political and/or war events, while this show is a true-crime dramatization. Bob