Radio station library discs are often overlooked by collectors and archivists for a variety of reasons; not the least of which is the inability of many to play a 16″ disc on their phonograph.
A few of these discs contain baseball references, including this one, which was released by the World Broadcasting Service. Companies such as this provided dozens (or hundreds) of large 16″ discs to radio stations, containing the musical and production content they required.
Although this is listed as part of the “Program” service, it is, in fact, a disc containing production elements, including intros, bumpers, and promos. Just for fun I have included all 11 production elements, including a couple of catchy tunes.
World Transcription Production Elements
This is an excerpt from the Your Lucky Strike show, hosted by Don Ameche from Dec. 7 1948. The guest is Bob Vaneslow, who would eventually play Starkey in Disney’s Peter Pan. He also made bit appearances on TV programs such as Bonanza, Gangbusters, The FBI, and others.
Bob Vaneslow – Your Lucky Strike
In this clip, he discusses his decision to pursue a performing career instead of accepting an offer from the Minneapolis Millers.
There were two incarnations of the Phil Rizzuto Sports Caravan. This is an audition disc for the earlier of the two, which was to appear on NBC in 1952.
Phil touches on many different sports, including boxing, horse racing and football to go along with the Hot Stove chat about baseball.
He also looks back on Grover Cleveland (Pete) Alexander’s World Series heroics against the Murderers Row Yankees.
Gene Hermanski of the Cubs and Bert Shepherd, who pitched one game for the Senators after losing a leg in WWII are the two interview guests. Although it wasn’t mentioned, Shepherd not only lost a leg, but was also shot in the face during the war. He continued to play in the minors through 1955.
This is the only copy of the audition program that I have encountered. It was pressed by RCA.
PHIL RIZZUTO SPORTS CARAVAN AUDITION
This rare (and possibly unique) disc is from the “Sports Secrets” series of 1934; of which only two programs are known to have survived. The other existing program features Joe Cronin. That disc has a printed Brunswick label, while this example has a typewritten label with information etched into the lead-in groove on the outside of the disc, and is oversized, at almost 13″, indicating it is probably a test pressing.
In addition, there is an outtake from Dizzy Dean on the extreme outer 1/8th inch of the disc, which, along with the written information etched into the lead-in groove, would have been trimmed off of a regular production disc.
The date of 1934 was taken from Michael J. Corenthal’s book Baseball On Record and has not been independently confirmed.
Although he went on to become a sportscaster, Dean was much better off the cuff than reading from a prepared script, and he struggled with the prepared dialogue.
This disc is a good combination of genuine rarity as well as HOF content. Enjoy!
Dizzy Dean – Brunswick RCX9524 – 1934
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