Friday, October 1, 2010

Radio: Still A Comfort....

As I mentioned before, I still twirl the AM dial, looking for different programming.  Much of AM radio has changed to News, Sports, Weather and Talk.  Occasionally, I'll still find some music, like on 1220, WABF in Fairhope, AL (still locally owned, I believe).  Or old radio dramas...which is my current subject!

I sleep light, so if something happens, like our dogs barking at a bear or other wildlife in the wee hours, I have a hard time going back to sleep.  Four o'clock one morning a couple of weeks ago, this happened.  After shushing the mutts so they wouldn't awaken the rest of the household, I got my little Grundig Mini 300 and a pair of headphones and started dialing around.

Yes, I did try KAAY on 1090, at 4:12 AM; the signal was pretty good, but faded to almost nil a few minutes later, which was a testimony that the atmosphere CAN enhance a small signal (we can hardly pick up KAAY here in Mobile any more- Jerry Sims couldn't hear the station at all when he was here last year).  I dialed up, hit 1150 to find "Coast To Coast AM" jammed by a typical Cuban "warbler" station, but I tuned back to 1120, KMOX, to find "When Radio Was"! (KMOX lists this series to air from 1 AM to 6 AM Sunday mornings.)  "One Way Passage" (from 1932) with Humphrey Bogart and Joan Bennett just started- nice play!  I sat back , closed my eyes and let the theater in my mind open....after the show, a Halo shampoo ad aired...made me want to go out & find some!

At the bottom of the hour, "Theater of Romance" was aired, with Frank Graham (Dec. 18, 1945).  The program, it was explained, was broadcast for five years, starting in 1943.  There was an ad for "Radio Spirits", then a "Ma Perkins" show from 1949 was aired.  I was getting quite relaxed about this time and finally began to doze off.  Sometime around 5:15 AM, I pulled the headphones, turned the '300 off and took a nap before the alarm rang....

Radio is still an entertaining, relaxing source of entertainment- you just have to search out the odd & unusual!  Not that I'd get up at 4 AM every Sunday morning to catch "When Radio Was" or other radio shows, it's nice to know that it was out there when I was wound up & not sleepy!  Sure, this stuff can be found on the Internet, but there's something still romantic about capturing the signal in the dark, across many miles and enjoying the me, a computer ain't radio....

Bud S. (

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