Monday, July 18, 2011

Friday, July 15, 2011

Dave White Presents Beatles and Hulk

Rex Fowler of Aztec Two Step and the Nu-Utopians headlines the next edition of Dave White Presents - two great musical acts for the price of one!

In 1971, along with partner Neal Shulman, Rex Fowler co-founded the folk/rock duo Aztec Two Step. Within a year they had their first critically-acclaimed album on Electra Records. For 40 years, Aztec Two Step has continued to record and tour, appeared on Dave Letterman, and were the subject of a PBS documentary. If you haven't heard their 2007 DAYS OF HORSES, you're missing a treat for anyone who loves sophisticated musicianship and intricate harmonies! But Rex has another project he's also deservedly proud of: the Nu-Utopians, a John Lennon tribute band with a difference. They don't try to sound like the Beatles but rather create distinctive mash-ups of many standards from both Beatle and Lennon's solo catalogues. You'll get to hear the behind-the-scenes stories of both bands and here some great new samples as well!

Then, DWP offers part two of Wes Britton's popular interview with Patrick Jankiewicz, author of You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry: A Hulk Companion. What happened to the hit series when its star endured personal tragedies, what about both the aired and never-seen sequels, and how did the TV show influence the Hollywood remakes?

How about some baseball? Dave White talks with Larry Canale about his new book, Mickey Mantle:

Memories and Memorabilia. It's a picture book full of the history and nostalgia of the man, the myth, and the legend of the most famous New York Yankee of them all!

All this and - you guessed it - the "predictably unpredictable" humor of Dave White Presents debuts Tues. July 19 at 7:30 p.m. Eastern, then 7:30 Pacific over:

On Wed. July 20, the 90 minutes will become available for download anytime you like at:

For more on Aztec Two Step:

For more on the Nu-Utopians:

Join the Dave White Presents Facebook page at:

Don't forget: all our past shows from the past three years are still posted for your listening pleasure at:

Monday, July 4, 2011

Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar interview

STSS 07/10/2011

We will hear Episode 9 of" The Columbia Workshop" "26 by Corwin" "Old Salt", starring Everett Sloan, ,from 06/29/41.

The remainder of the program will be devoted to "Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar", one of the most remembered shows from The Golden Age of Radio.

There were 6 radio personalities who actually played the part of Johnny Dollar.

We'll hear a show starring Charles Russell who was the first to play Dollar called, "The Stolen Portrait" Episode (007) from 04/01/49.

After we look at our Radio Calendar, we'll hear an interview we did with John Abbott. No, not the actor, but the author of a very large and detailed book about Johnny Dollar. The book was released in 2010 and is available where most books are sold including: Bear Manor Media.

We'll hear next from the best of the Johnny Dollars. Bob Bailey played the part the longest and we'll hear his last show as Johnny Dollar. It is episode (716) and is called, "The Empty Threat Matter, from 11/27/60

Here are ways to listen to Same Time, Same Station.

1. It streams on demand beginning every Sunday at Jerry Haendiges's OTR site.

2. It is available from Radio Out Of The Past beginning Monday or Tuesday.

Download it at

3. Listen to us Sunday mornings at 12 UTC, 8 Eastern, 5 AM Pacific at

4. Listen to KMIN / KDSK Radio Grans New Mexico 10 PM eastern, 8 pm Mountain, 7 PM Pacific on Sundays

5. The broadcast can also be heard one week later on Saturday at 3 PM Eastern, 12 noon Pacific at:

Filmfax's June Foray autobiography review

Very early in this charming autobiography by June Foray is a photo snapped in Hollywood in 2000. In the image, the peerless voice artist strikes a pose with a friend at her recently unveiled star on the Walk of Fame. Well, how could June Foray not have a star there? After all, she is Rocket J. Squirrel, Nell Fenwick, Witch Hazel, Granny, Natasha Fatale, and Cindy Lou Who, Betty Rubble (in The Flagstones pilot), Chatty Cathy--even Bridey Hammerschlaugen, for Pete's sake.

Without even knowing it, TV fiends have enjoyed June's vocalizations on Gilligan's Island, Lost in Space, Get Smart, The Brady Bunch, The Smurfs, Spiderman and His Amazing Friends (June was Aunt May), and many others. She's done voice acting for major features, including Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Looney Tunes Back in Action, The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, and Mulan. And just in case her tonsils might fall out of fighting trim, she's looped dialogue for such pictures as The Secret of Santa Vittoria, Bells Are Ringing (for Judy Holliday), The Only Game in Town, and The Hospital (for Diana Rigg!).

That's a fat resume for somebody who, when she was barely old enough to go to school, amused herself by barking at the dogs in her Springfield, Massachusetts neighborhood, and by doing voice impressions of Edna Mae Oliver, Una O'Connor, and other character actresses of the day. Even as a kid, she was drawn to unique voices with comic overtones.

June wanted to be an actress. Her mother had other ideas. As June relates it, good fortune smiled down, giving her pneumonia that ended her dance-recital career, and a broken finger that stopped the agony of piano lessons. A backyard accident that climaxed with a badly broken tooth didn't affected June's speech, so fortune was still smiling in her direction.

Her precocious voice talents landed her a job on local radio at age 15. A summer vacation in Los Angeles led to roles at the famed Pasadena Playhouse. She landed gigs at L.A. radio stations. June was just a kid, but she already was working hard at her craft.

The notion of "work" is a thread that runs through the book like a helpful arrow on a road map. June's gifts may strike us as being fully realized from the beginning, as if she always had them and the vocalizations just poured out, without effort or practice. We might think that, but we'd be wrong. From the beginning of her career, June realized that talent wasn't enough. So she made numberless phone calls to inquire about jobs. She went to Central Casting and found work as an extra. She wrote and performed a one-woman show in a small theater that she rented herself. During World War II, while still very young, June wrote, produced, and acted in patriotic radio plays. At the famed Hollywood Canteen, she took the stage to entertain soldiers.

By the early 1950s, the popularity of comic and dramatic radio was on the wane. Propitiously for June, cartoon animation was still going strong--and stampeding into television--at just about that time. She did her first animated cartoon, Chuck Jones's Broomstick Bunny (as Witch Hazel) in 1956. The WB works, plus her association with Stan Freberg and Daws Butler ("St. George and the Dragonet," a top-selling record that spoofed Dragnet), brought her to the attention of cartoon producer Jay Ward, who was readying something for TV he wanted to call Rocky and His Friends. And the rest, moose and squirrel fans, is animation history. Is any other character in animation as animated as Rocket J. Squirrel? He's peppy, he's positive, he's the all-American, uh, rodent. He's a brilliant creation. June kept busy with Rocky, Nell, Natasha, and other Jay Ward characters, sharing mic time with such giants of the business as Bill Scott, Paul Frees, Charlie Ruggles, Edward Everett Horton, and William Conrad--all of whom helped make Rocky and Bullwinkle a much-loved cartoon milestone.

June's innate sense of loyalty reveals itself in her cheery praise of friends and co-workers. She was dazzled by Jay Ward, Bill Scott, and the rest of the Rocky bunch; she became a fierce admirer of Santa Vittoria producer Stanley Kramer; she was mad for Paul Frees and Chuck Jones, and developed a splendid friendship with Jerry Lewis (they did a record together, "The Puppy Dog's Dream," and June looped dialogue for many of Jerry's pictures). She wants us to know about the talent and kindness of these people and others.

Most poignantly, June writes of her husband--a ruggedly good-looking writer-producer named Hobart Donavan--with love, affection, and respect. Although hardly love at first sight as far as Donavan was concerned (he practically ignored June during their first meeting), the pair married ten years later. This, folks, was love and devotion, the real deal. Mr. Donavan has been gone now for more than 30 years, which makes June's high regard for him all the more affecting.

The book has its share of solid industry-insider stuff. June unhesitatingly relates hilarious tales of dumb producers, and because she's long been active on the Motion Picture Academy's Board of Governors, you'll learn something about industry structure and politics.

June also has been a tireless advocate for domestic and international recognition of the contribution of cartoon animation to the motion picture arts. She's determined, and pretty tough, too.

Finally, there's one point that is mainly irrelevant to June's career but that's worth mentioning nonetheless: She looks precisely as you might imagine. She is petite and shapely, with ash blonde hair, wide, sparkling eyes, and a broad, engaging smile. She is perilously cute. Hokey smoke, what a doll!

And what a talent.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

SPERDVAC raves on Verna Felton

"How often do we pick up an item, check its sell-by date and base our purchase decision on a time stamp? Fredrick Tucker's extraordinary tribute to Verna Felton titled simply Verna Felton has no sell-by date. Sometimes we just feel the need for laughter or the simple desire to lose ourselves in a make-believe place. The author has obviously felt that urge; clearly Verna has served as Tucker's guide.

If you asked the average passerby on the street to identify the name Verna Felton, it would be a safe bet you would receive a puzzled stare and an incorrect answer. The average person on the street inhabits the here and now universe of the likes of Lady Gaga not the more nostalgic realm of Verna Felton.

Verna Felton is a substantial book in more ways than one; it runs to 760 pages. The author candidly admits in a note at the beginning that his decision to write a book on the life of Felton was constantly challenged by friends and associates. Why write an entire book on a secondary player? Why devote such time and effort chronicling the life of a second banana? And the author's response: Why not write a biography of Verna Felton? In the pages that follow, Fredrick Tucker admirably justifies that decision. Here we have a detailed account of the life and career of someone who was comfortable in the limelight but not someone who craved or hogged center stage. That is a distinction worth noting.

Clearly, the author, a history teacher by profession, set out on an extensive expedition in order to produce this volume. Verna Felton is well-packed with illustrations: publicity stills, and personal photos. The biography assumes a traditional chronological path as Verna's life and career is revealed to the reader.

Verna Felton left us forty-four years ago. When she departed, she took several memorable characters with her. Characters who entertained audiences and made them laugh during some particularly unfunny and stressful moments in our country's past. They are all chronicled in these pages, the characters into which Verna breathed life and spirit and her personal sense of identity. Verna Felton offers readers a chance to reacquaint themselves with some of her stellar inventions or, in many cases, meet these notables for the first time. Verna and her many incarnations parade unceasingly through the pages of Tucker's homage. We meet the formidable Mrs. Day, Jack Benny's nemesis and Dennis Day's on-air mother. Once again the Mean Widdle Kid's Na-maw takes a bow. The feisty Hilda Crocker takes one more curtain call. The Queen of Hearts, Mrs. Potts, Pearl Slaphoople, Blossom Blimp and a legion of Verna's alter egos from stage, screen, radio and television are documented between the covers. As a special bonus, the reader is treated to a richly annotated guide to the December Bride television series in which Verna Felton's inestimable Hilda Crocker convulsed an entire generation of television viewers.

Filled with a wealth of detail and a sense of respect and admiration, Verna Felton defines not only a remarkable character actress but also showcases the industry of which she was a part during its days of splendor.

A successful biography offers the reader an intimate glimpse of the author's obsession. This volume clearly accomplishes that goal. We meet 'Little Verna Felton,' age ten, making her debut on the stage of Fischer's Concert House, San Francisco in 1900. The reader figuratively stands in the wings observing the vast body of Verna's radio work, the reason for Radio Life presenting Verna with its Distinguished Achievement Award as the 'outstanding feminine supporting player' during 1945-1946. And the reader comes to understand why Verna was selected honorary Mayor of North Hollywood for six terms.

Verna Felton the biography is fully as robust, as entertaining and as multi-layered as Verna Felton the actress. The doubters who questioned the wisdom of an entire volume devoted to Felton were wrong. In an era where audiences applaud the likes of Lady Gaga there are still some of us who would rather warm up the Philco and sit back and laugh as Mrs. Day assails Jack Benny, one more time, for only paying Dennis a miserly $35 a week."
- SPERDVAC's Radiogram

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Gone with the Wind & Hulk

The next Dave White Presents covers it all - music, film, and television!

From the world of music, Wes Britton interviews David Bromberg, a gent who's played it all and played with nearly everyone! David's got a new album out, Use Me, which features some of his friends like John Hiatt, Dr. John, Levon Helm, Linda Ronstadt, Los Lobos, Vince Gill and Tim O'Brien. We'll play you two new songs and share stories from a master storyteller!

From the world of movies, author Gene Arceri discusses his book, Ghosts Of Gone With The Wind. It's the first book based on the notes and files of assistant director Eric Stacy, the man who suggested the burning of Atlanta. Expect insights into the 1939 blockbuster you've never heard before!

From television, we have Patrick A. Jankiewicz, author of You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry: A Hulk Companion. Get inside a classic hit of the '70s, hear some fun stories about what happened on the set, and what was never broadcast. In fact, Patrick has so many tales to share, this will be part one of a two-parter on DWP.

It all debuts Tues. July 5 at 7:30 p.m. Eastern, then 7:30 Pacific over:

On Wed. July 6, the 90 minutes will be available for download anytime you like at:

Now, ain't that variety entertainment?