WBAI folio - 1964
[ posted on the messageboard at: http://goodlight.net/wbai ]
Too old to be too young
This is a little off topic but interesting and, ummm, topical...
I bought a book at Housing Works today and tucked inside was a WBAI Program Folio for October 1964. What a treat. It's a 16 page pamphlet with detailed program notes, pleas for money, ads for benefits, and a column of "Classified--Personals."
I'd love to listen to this station if it was on the air now. An updated version of the schedule, for the new century, would be perfect. This Folio is evidence of radio (not to mention copy writing) with verve and relevance. The width and depth of the programming is impressive. High art, low entertainment, practical advice, radical politics, news in depth, humor, and out-there culture are all present.
The 4:45pm to 5:45pm slot, seven days a week, is children's programing that includes, for example, serial radio versions of the Phantom Tollbooth and A Journey to the Center of the Earth, Pete Seeger, and a nature show about salamanders.
The schedule includes lots of classical amusic, literature readings and adaptations, jazz, lectures, round-ups of Soviet and European press, country music, a couple of BBC news and humor shows, avant garde music/poetry/drama, news from the front lines of the civil rights movement, and, of course, Alan Watts.
A few highlights from the schedule, selected fairly randomly, are:
* Monday 11pm, NUCLEAR DISASTER with Dr. Tom Stonier, author of Nuclear Disaster, discusses the ecological effects of a nuclear disaster with Chris Kock in this sixth [!] program of the series.
* Monday 1:30 pm THE SCIENCE CRITIC Encyclopedias and the Truth discussed by Dr. Marshall Deutsh.
* Monday 7:15pm REVIEW OF SOVIET PRESS by William Mandel, translator from the Soviet Press and author...
* Tuesday 7:15pm KING-HALL LONDON LETTER Fifth in a series of reports and analyses from London, prepared especially for Pacifica Radio by Commander Sir Stephen King-Hall.
* Wednesday 7:15pm THE FBI NOBODY KNOWS Chris Kock talks with Fred Cook about his recent book...Mr. Cook opens with a discussion of the Jack Levin 'affair' and WBAI's interview with Mr. Levine. His book is the most critical of the Bureau yet to be published.
* Friday 2:45pm A CHOICE IS MADE: A MAN IS ELECTED The first of five analyses of the present Presidential election campaign...
* Friday 10:15am NUTRITION Some comments on the U.S. Army Diet...
* Sunday 5pm WBAI's one program series deliberately dedicated to broadcasting against the public interest. Conducted by Rich'd C. Neuweller and Bill Alton, with help in the thousands, but absolutely no support. [!!!???]
This ad on page two immediately caught my eye:
"WBAI IS BROKE. Broke. bRoke. brOke. broKe. brokE. broke A Word, any word, repeated often enough becomes completely meaningless. You have heard us before say broke many times before. WBAI has been low on funds before. And we are sure you are as tired of hearing us plead MONEY TROUBLE as we are pleading. But New York's one and only listener-sponsored, non-commercial radio station asks for your support again. We need you. Now. The annual subscriptions campaign will begin in several weeks, but until such time as the drive starts showing results, we must turn to you. We need you. "No money" has a lot of meaning for us at WBAI. The listing skiff, "symbolic of WBAI's financial situtation," on the Folio is no joke. [This edition of Folio has a rather odd abstract ink drawing of two figures tilting over in a landscape.] The station's income is so small and our bank account so depleted that payday becomes less and less a certainty. Even the length of our broadcast day is threatened. WBAI has never cried wolf and is not doing so now."
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