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WJSV Complete Day
September 21, 2013 1:49 PM   Subscribe

Thursday, September 21st, 1939, radio station WJSV in Washington, D.C., recorded their entire broadcast day -- from sign on, to sign off. The entire day is available here.
posted by PHINC (46 comments total) 97 users marked this as a favorite

 
Wow! Thank you for posting this. We recently found some records of my late father in law's from when he worked at KSTP in the early 40s. It's pretty fascinating to hear how different media was presented then.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:50 PM on September 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


I suppose anyone who comments in the next 19 hours will be told to LTFA....

No, this is great. Thanks!
posted by GenjiandProust at 1:56 PM on September 21, 2013 [3 favorites]


Thank you for yet another awesome document, Internet Archive! I had the pleasure of going there the other day and it's a great place run by great people.
posted by Noisy Pink Bubbles at 2:05 PM on September 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


Coolness. Thanks for posting it.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 2:06 PM on September 21, 2013


I think I'm going to play this through the speakers in my modified Bakelite radio shell from wake up til sleep and see how I feel.

my favorite thing to do in L.A Noire is obey traffic laws while listening to the King Biscut Flower Hour
posted by The Whelk at 2:07 PM on September 21, 2013 [5 favorites]


Outstanding, I have been wondering where to find for early, and I mean EARLY, television archives.
posted by scrowdid at 2:10 PM on September 21, 2013


Oh crap, I misread, it's radio. I guess I was too excited!
posted by scrowdid at 2:11 PM on September 21, 2013


ooh, the trans-atlantic accent! Rs are for plebes!
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 2:12 PM on September 21, 2013


oh my god this is fantastic. thank you so much for posting this.
posted by the bricabrac man at 2:15 PM on September 21, 2013


Thank you for sharing this; it's damn near impossible to find the bits between the programs before the 1950s, radio or tv.
posted by banal evil at 2:23 PM on September 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


And, of course, considering that this is within a month of the start of World War II makes the newscasts of special interest
posted by banal evil at 2:25 PM on September 21, 2013




Does anyone know the backstory? I expected to find that they recorded this day because of FDR's speech, or because of the war, or because of a Depression-era public works project, but I can't find anything definitive. Why did they choose to record the day?
posted by Houstonian at 2:42 PM on September 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


Great find; I've just been listening to the news from the Western Front. Wonder if that Czech uprising will come to anything? I'll relax with an Arrow Beer while I wait to find out!
posted by languagehat at 2:42 PM on September 21, 2013


it's going to take awhile, but i've got to listen to this - what a find!
posted by pyramid termite at 2:44 PM on September 21, 2013


Thanks for this.

I have actually done a lot of things while listening to Lux Radio Theater on my iPod, downloaded from archive.org also. The quality's hit or miss, plus there are sponsored messages hawking Lux soap for uses it could not possibly have had (keeping your skin younger and your whites whiter), but it's usually pretty dang entertaining.
posted by Countess Elena at 2:48 PM on September 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


I have never heard of the internet archive trove of radio programs before so for me this is like dog & bone. My first google search was a hit Doctor Demento's basement tapes volume 3.

THANK YOU PHINC!
posted by bukvich at 3:17 PM on September 21, 2013 [3 favorites]


This is kind of amazing. Thank you so much.
posted by freakazoid at 3:18 PM on September 21, 2013


This makes me want to press my dad for more info on the whereabouts of my grandmother's recording of her final night on her radio show from the 1950s. (He played it for us a few times when we were kids, but the last time I asked him about it, he didn't know where it was.)
posted by ocherdraco at 3:19 PM on September 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


This is supposed to be a better recording of that day, though much less information is provided in the archive.

According to this National Archives press release, the day was recorded at the request of the National Archives themselves. On the 70th anniversary of the recording, NPR produced a 6 minute synopsis and background on the audio time capsule (you can listen to the piece, or read the transcript).

The "why" appears to be because the National Archives wanted to capture the experience and realities of radio in that day.
posted by filthy light thief at 3:30 PM on September 21, 2013 [10 favorites]


Someone should put an entire internet day in a bottle and put it on a shelf in the national archives.
posted by kiltedtaco at 3:37 PM on September 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


Outstanding. Thanks for posting this.
posted by LobsterMitten at 3:53 PM on September 21, 2013


kiltedtaco: Someone should put an entire internet day in a bottle and put it on a shelf in the national archives.

Like some sort of Internet Archive Archive? They're doing just that. Mind you, it's more than a single day of The Internet.
posted by filthy light thief at 3:56 PM on September 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


I have never heard of the internet archive trove of radio programs before so for me this is like dog & bone.

The phrase you're looking for is "Old Time Radio," or OTR. There are ton of sites dedicated to OTR, and Archive.org offers a way to browse their vast collections. Note: some sites offer access to their archives online or burnt to CDs for a price, but if you dig around enough, you can find ways to get most of these old programs for free. I made a mess of a mega-post on OTR, and various old programs have been shared on the blue in the past years. Happy hunting!
posted by filthy light thief at 4:01 PM on September 21, 2013 [4 favorites]


This is fantastic. Listening to it now and have already sent it to a radiophile friend.
posted by PussKillian at 4:25 PM on September 21, 2013


"Every time my car sees a gasoline station, it wags its rumble seat! [big laugh]"

I guess you had to be there.
posted by stopgap at 4:47 PM on September 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


Hey, Pepsi Cola used to come in "a big 12-ounce bottle."
posted by escabeche at 5:02 PM on September 21, 2013


"I've always wondered what I'd do if I had to sneeze on the air. Now I know."
posted by escabeche at 5:08 PM on September 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


I think I'm going to play this through the speakers in my modified Bakelite radio shell from wake up til sleep and see how I feel.

Saddened but a bit amused by the general draft in France and the early hints that Germany was just going to go through Belgium to avoid the Maginot line.

At least that's how I'm feeling so far.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 5:16 PM on September 21, 2013


i'm not at all sure how i missed it - but, i somehow didn't know so many live music shows were available. this post is awesome on it's own merits, but is doubly awesome for giving me things like this great centro-matic show from 2003.
posted by nadawi at 5:17 PM on September 21, 2013


This is wonderful. Great find. Right now, the Larry Glick Podcast is running the Blizzard of '78 as it developed during Larry's late-night talk-show on WBZ-AM, February 7, 1978.
posted by not_on_display at 5:18 PM on September 21, 2013 [3 favorites]


Listened to parts of this and then moved on to other things in the OTR category. Now I'm looking forward to our next road trip - Johnny Dollar will definitely be on the playlist.
posted by sciencegeek at 5:55 PM on September 21, 2013


Sorry for not posting this at 5am, I just forgot!
posted by PHINC at 6:44 PM on September 21, 2013


I put this together of my dad's radio show in Salem, VA from 1956 using an LP recording and images from his Andrew Lewis High School annual.
posted by PHINC at 7:00 PM on September 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


Double. From 2002, though, so I suppose we can agree to overlook it.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 7:24 PM on September 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


I love love love love love this. Have listened to the entire thing, all 24 hours.

I live in DC now and it's fascinating to hear what life was like here back then.
posted by downing street memo at 8:58 PM on September 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


This is awesome. Thoroughly enjoying! I can't get enough old-time radio. I especially like that this is just sort of the everyday run-on of radio chatter, not even a special show.

Arthur Godfrey sounds sort of drunk. Stylistic?
posted by Miko at 9:59 PM on September 21, 2013


This pop music is awesome.
posted by Miko at 10:13 PM on September 21, 2013


Ooh, I forgot about the 8 minutes of dead air at 6:15 or so. Jesus. I worked crappy college radio and we freaked out over a few seconds of dead air.
posted by downing street memo at 10:37 PM on September 21, 2013


Horace Rumpole: Double. From 2002, though, so I suppose we can agree to overlook it.

The prior post was about an informational site that had a few clips in Quicktime. This is the complete audio recording. Definitely not a double.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:09 AM on September 22, 2013


> Hey, Pepsi Cola used to come in "a big 12-ounce bottle."

Twelve full ounces, that's a lot!
posted by languagehat at 9:51 AM on September 22, 2013


I'm old enough to remember the small Cokes - 8 oz I think - in bottles. By comparison, 12 oz was a big jump.
posted by Miko at 10:16 AM on September 22, 2013


Great, thanks.
posted by Rash at 10:34 AM on September 22, 2013


Any locals curious about those unfamiliar call letters, wikipedia on how they changed in 1943, to WTOP.
posted by Rash at 11:07 AM on September 22, 2013


Ooh, I forgot about the 8 minutes of dead air at 6:15 or so. Jesus. I worked crappy college radio and we freaked out over a few seconds of dead air.

One of my local DJs had the best save from a good 4 minute stretch of dead air:

"This moment of silence brought to you by your local public library."
posted by radwolf76 at 2:28 PM on September 22, 2013 [2 favorites]


Leg it to Liggett's for a late lunch, willya? [CLAAANGgg] That gong was seven thirty, right upon the schnozzle...
posted by not_on_display at 10:05 PM on September 22, 2013


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