THE GOLDEN AGE OF COMEDY - Various Artists
LABEL: Evolution/On the Air
TRACK LISTING: The Mad Russian - Eddie Cantor & Bert Gordon, Fibber McGee & Molly - Jim & Marian Jordan, Who's On First - Abbott & Costello, Feud - Fred Allen & Jack Benny, The Jukebox - Jackie Gleason, Saturday Night Couple - Sid Caesar & Imogene Coca, Gracie's Relatives - George Burns & Gracie Allen, You Bet Your Life - Groucho Marx, The Question Man - Ernie Kovacs, The Library Card - Milton Berle, Junior the Mean Widdle Kid - Red Skelton, Oscar Levant with Fred Allen, Baron Munchausen - Jack Pearl, Matinee With - Bob & Ray, Mr. & Mrs. Morning Radio - Fred Allen & Talullah Bankhead, Hello Mama - George Jessel, The Perfect Fool - Ed Wynn, The Holdup - Jack Benny, Dr. Kronkheit & His Only Living Patient - Smith & Dale, Laurel & Hardy
IMPRESSIONS: Around 1979, I was first introduced to the world of old time radio by my friend Ed Jacoby. At that time, the local public radio station WUHY-FM (now WHYY) played episodes of old time radio shows every weekday. The very first one I ever heard was an episode of FIBBER MCGEE & MOLLY and I was hooked for life. I began taping them offa the radio and, at the same time, discovered that my middle school library had several old radio show records which I could take out and tape as well. One of them was this collection of classic comedy routines from some of the greatest radio comedians and I played this so many times that I still have every word memorized. My favourite track of all is the classic hilarious parody of saccharine morning radio programmes by Fred Allen & Talullah Bankhead which, despite millions of listens, still breaks me into hysterics. Just hearing the first few moments of track one on the album (The Mad Russian's trademark line "How do you dooooooo!") immediately rockets me back to those times when a library card and a stereo needle touching down on a disc of vinyl could transport me back to those thrilling days of yesteryear.
MY FAVOURITE TRACKS: The Mad Russian - Eddie Cantor & Bert Gordon, Who's On First? - Abbott & Costello, Feud - Fred Allen & Jack Benny, Saturday Night Couple - Sid Caesar & Imogene Coca, Gracie's Relatives - George Burns & Gracie Allen, The Library Card - Milton Berle, Junior the Mean Widdle Kid - Red Skelton, Baron Munchausen - Jack Pearl, Mr. & Mrs. Morning Radio - Fred Allen & Talullah Bankhead, Laurel & Hardy
FACT SHEET: This was originally a two record set composed of comedy routines culled from old time radio recordings. There was a renewed interest in old time radio during the early 1970s and these years featured a blossoming of these recordings first made available on vinyl. In 1994, the "On The Air" label re-released this album on cd with a slightly altered title "A GOLDEN HOUR OF COMEDY" and a new (and inferior) cover art.