Posts in Category: Broadcast History

Look Familiar? I Thought So…You Were Not Alone!

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Look Familiar? I Thought So…You Were Not Alone!

In reviewing the comments from yesterday’s story on Rosie, I noticed some conversations about drawing pictures of cameras and studios as kids, so…I thought we’d take a trip down memory lane. As it turns out, a lot of us that went into the field did this and here are over two dozen works of art from around the country. Enjoy and share! Oh, and add your pix too if you can find them! -Bobby Ellerbee













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Televising The Oswald Transfer…Two Fascinating Videos

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Televising The Oswald Transfer…Two Fascinating Videos

Eye witnesses to history, NBC’s Tom Pettit, WBAP cameraman Homer Venso, director Fred Rheinstein and producer Chet Hagen discuss the events of Sunday, November 24, 1963.

In the basement of the jail were three live cameras from WBAP (NBC with RCA TK30s), KRLD (CBS with GE PE20s) and WFAA (ABC with Marconi Mark IVs). Outside, feeding WBAP was a KTVT truck with GE PC 11s. I think the WBAP truck had been towed there as it was having engine problems.

Homer Venso was on the WBAP camera…the only camera that caught the shooting live. He was instructed to rack the lens to a wider shot live on NBC air just one second before Oswald was shot. At 4:13, you can see Homer moving his camera into place beside the other two. At the time of the shooting, both KRLD and WFAA were taping the activity, but were not live locally or on their networks…only NBC got it live. Our friend Max Schindler was directing NBC’s coverage of the arrival of dignitaries in Washington when he saw this come up on his air monitor.

Interestingly, around the 8 minute mark, a live WFAA Marconi Mark IV is seen at Parkland Hospital for the death announcement. Oswald was shot at 11:20 Central and died at 1:07 Central. Parkland was 4 miles away so the live trucks had to literally break and run to strike and reset in order to get the shots. Even though pooling was supposed to be happening, I’m sure there were a mad dash by all to get their own equipment moved.

The film footage of Oswald arriving at Parkland at 7:50 in the embedded clip is fascinating and I wondered how that was possible till I saw this KRLD raw video clip. Notice at 19:20, there is a film crew on the street and they immediately follow the ambulance. They had to be the ones that got the arrival footage.

This whole raw video is just fascinating. It starts several minutes before the shooting and they keep going with interviews for several minutes after. NBC’s Tom Pettit was only three feet away when Ruby shot Oswald and is seen here through out. -Bobby Ellerbee

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m5khMFFKslw KRLD Raw Video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tjphDSY5QJ4

*Poor quality both audio and video Oswald is paraded back and forth through the hallways of the Dallas Police Department. Comments regarding the transfer and…
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October 2006…My RCA TK41C Arrives From Los Angeles

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October 2006…My RCA TK41C Arrives From Los Angeles

http://www.photoshow.com/watch/Bk7iG7Fs
With the arrival of two new items, I thought it would be a good time to mark the anniversary of Rosie’s arrival. At the link above is a slide show that document’s the arrival of the massive camera at my old house in Athens. I had thought this was lost till last week when our friend Lytle Hoover at Oldradio.com sent me the link. Believe it or not, it was flown from LAX to ATL.

Till yesterday, I never had a photo of Rosie at KTLA that I was sure was her…now I do. Rosie is a TK41C which has a different left side exhaust port than the RCA TK41As and Bs and was the only C model owned by KTLA. Thanks to Steve Dichter for sending this screen capture. With his help back in 2007, I was able to get the full history on Rosie and it’s quite interesting with all the details at this link. http://www.eyesofageneration.com/Bobby_Collections_TK41.php

As you’ll see in the arrival pix, she did not have the NBC logo when she got to me, but in if you noticed in the Dean Martin photo spread from yesterday, not every NBC camera had a network logo. The snake logo that she wears now are the genuine article sent to me by my friend Jay Ballard, who spent many years at NBC taking care of cameras. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee







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Directing The Arrival Back In Washington…A Heartbreaking Night

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Directing The Arrival Back In Washington…A Heartbreaking Night

It is an honor for this site to have among it’s members, Max A. Schindler. Max not only directed ‘Meet The Press’ for over twenty years, but directed many special events for NBC including parts of the John and Robert Kennedy funerals and Martin Luther King’s “I Have A Dream” speech.

In the first part of this video (0:0 – 11:30) you will hear Mr. Schindler describe the events of November 22, 1963 as he tried to get to Andrews Air Force Base for the arrival. Only the two camera NBC truck had an AT&T connection, so CBS and ABC had to take his feed.

At 14:30 he talks about the MLK speech and at 19:19, about directing the RFK funeral with some very interesting details. At the link below is the NBC arrival coverage from Andrews. After President Kennedy’s casket was removed, President Johnson addressed the nation, but that is not included in this clip. Enjoy and share. -Bobby Ellerbee

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_23UyIuEzK4 Arrival video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6hM-uCHIWBM

Full interview at http://www.emmytvlegends.org/interviews/people/max-schindler
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November 22, 1963…Television Coverage, Assassination Day

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November 22, 1963…Television Coverage, Assassination Day

The only silver lining to one of our darkest days was the local media. The Dallas/Ft. Worth stations were well equipped and on the scene for a big day and were pooling coverage which would become invaluable over the next few days.

It started in Ft. Worth with a televised breakfast. Since WBAP (an NBC affiliate using RCA TK30s) was located there, they covered the event while WFAA (an ABC affiliate using Marconi Mark IVs) covered the arrival at Love Field. KRLD (the CBS affiliate with GE PE20s) was at the Dallas Trade Mart for the luncheon.

By 1:40 ET, the networks were involved. Walter Cronkite did a voice only bulletin over a slide at CBS. Less than an minute later, Don Pardo delivered a voice bulletin over a slide at NBC. Soon after, Cronkite was on the air live from the newsroom…the cameras had been taken out that morning for maintenance and were quickly rushed back into service, already warm, but not quite up to speed.

NBC went live from Studio 5HN, the headline news studio on the 5th floor with Frank McGee and Chet Huntley aided by Robert McNeil at Parkland hospital with live phone reports. McNeil had called on a line that was not a broadcast line and McGee had to relay his reports. NBC techs brought out a telephone mic, but there was too much feedback.

ABC was caught totally by surprise and news coverage there started with a radio newsman on camera with no set and a stage hand helping. After that first live phone report, Ron Cochran finally rushed in from lunch down the street and took over. All expect one of the these photos is from Friday, November 22. More on the photos. -Bobby Ellerbee











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By The Way…Happy Thanksgiving Week!

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By The Way…Happy Thanksgiving Week!

Some of you will be off, and some working overtime on parades and football, some doing news and some are in Neverland with Peter Pan, but where ever you are and what ever you are doing, enjoy the holiday! -Bobby Ellerbee


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The Gravity Bot & Dolly, Motion Control Camera Platform

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Anyone Ever See One Of These, Or Know What To Call It?

This is a mighty curios rig isn’t it? I first saw it yesterday and was memorized. The camera in use the the Phantom Milo and research on that is what gave us the Gallagher slow mo video in the post before this.

This is a computer controlled jib/crane/dolly arrangement used for motion pictures. It’s rail mounted and has two separate arms. In this photo, the smaller arm is carrying lights and the big arm, the camera but I think you could mount two cameras here easily.

Personally, I hate robotics in television but in movie making, I can see the need because rigs like this can repeat the same shot over and over with identical movement to help build special effects scenes. I’ll bet this was used in making ‘Gravity’. Anyone know more? Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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A Smashing Good Time…Gallagher In HD Slow Motion FPS Tests

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A Smashing Good Time…Gallagher In HD Slow Motion FPS Tests

In the next post, I’ll show you the Star Wars looking robotic movie crane/jib that brought me to this fun 2 minute clip, but for now, take a look at this. This is shot with the Phantom Milo camera using variable frames per second software. There’s more at this link, and a longer version of the Gallagher session. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

http://fctn.tv/blog/fiction-product-test-001-the-phantom-miro-starring-gallagher/

Gallagher FPS tests

Gallagher in HD high speed is a sight to behold. See the actual edit at: https://vimeo.com/48459576 See BTS and read the equipment review: www.fctn.tv/blog
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The Final Seconds Of Camelot…51 Years Ago Today, Dealey Plaza

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The Final Seconds Of Camelot…51 Years Ago Today, Dealey Plaza

Today’s remembrance of the assassination of President Kennedy is marked here by some rare, not often seen photos from that day. The sequence of pictures begins with the motorcade’s turn onto Elm Street at Dealey Plaza. Except for the last one, all of these photos were taken between 12:30 and 12:31 PM CT that day. I’ll add a few notes to the photos that I hope you will share. -Bobby Ellerbee

Where were you that day we’ll never forget? Tomorrow, the television pictures.










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By Request…’The Dean Martin Show’, Behind The Scenes

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By Request…’The Dean Martin Show’, Behind The Scenes

Long time NBC cameraman Russell Ross ask for this, so here you go Russell. Before we start, here’s a must see 3 minute video that perfectly captures the mood and style of the show. In it, Dean fakes his way through a song and dance with Loyd Bridges and Anna Moffo, and at the end, there’s an un-staged moment when Dean’s pants rip and he sheepishly walks out of the studio to change.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VLwHtOzq2M4

‘The Dean Martin Show’ ran from September 16, 1965 – April 5, 1974 and originated from Studio 4 at NBC Burbank. The show began with RCA TK41s, but the RCA TK44s came next. It was introduced in late 1968 and I think NBC bought a few, but the TK44B debuted in 1971 and that’s when NBC loaded up on these. Johnny Carson’s show brought the 44Bs into Studio 6B a year before the move to Burbank where some 44As were already in use, and more 44Bs were added in Burbank in ’71.

Unfortunately, there are not many photos of the show in production, but here are the ones I have. I’ll make some notes on each one, so click through them. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee







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By Request: A Look At NBC Burbank, Studio 1…1963

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By Request: A Look At NBC Burbank, Studio 1…1963

The first :45 seconds of this pilot for ‘Let’s Make A Deal’ gives us a nice wide angle shot Studio 1, which would later become Johnny Carson’s home. Notice the RCA TK41 still has three cables and is mounted on the old Houston Fearless TD 1 pedestal and it’s fitted with a Zoomar Studio lens. Thanks to Ed Mitchell for requesting this. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pvNXm_5kLmo

This 37 minute pilot, produced on May 25, 1963 with Monty Hall as host and Wendell Niles as announcer/sidekick, led to the premiere of Let’s Make a Deal on N…
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Just For Fun…Can You Guess What Famous Star Is Wearing These?

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Just For Fun…Can You Guess What Famous Star Is Wearing These?

The actor in question had to wear these wooden lifts to get him to eye-level with his female co start while shooting a film that has become a classic, that we all know and love.

Here are some hints…he was 5′ 8″ and named America’s greatest actor by The American Film Institute. He was a wicked chess player, an avid reader, had a yacht named Santana and as a baby, appeared in a national advertising campaign for Mellin’s Baby Food. He once said ” The trouble with the world is that it’s always one drink behind”.

Jarbas Jam Mesquita was the first with the correct answer…Humphrey Bogart. He wore these while filming ‘Casablanca’ to get him eye level with Ingrid Bergman. Thanks to Gay Linvill for the picture. Enjoy, share and good luck! -Bobby Ellerbee


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Behind The Scenes At The White House…

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Behind The Scenes At The White House…

In case you were wondering what the live broadcast configuration of speeches delivered from the East Room look like these days, here’s your answer.

Just behind President Obama is the main head-on pool camera, and to the left of it is a backup camera, which is always provided in case there are technical problems with the main camera. I’m not sure what the camera to the right is for, but suspect it is there for archival purposes. You can barely see it, but there’s also a small camera directly below the main teleprompter, which is the camera for the webstream on the White House website. Thanks to CNN’s Andy Rose for the pix and details. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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November 21, 1980…Who Shot J. R.? The Big Reveal

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November 21, 1980…Who Shot J. R.? The Big Reveal

On this day in 1980, 83 million people tuned in to television’s popular primetime drama ‘Dallas’ to find out who shot J.R. Ewing, the character fans loved to hate. J.R. had been shot on the season-ending episode the previous March 21, which now stands as one of television’s most famous cliffhangers. The plot twist inspired widespread media coverage and left America wondering “Who shot J.R.?” for the next eight months. The November 21 episode solved the mystery, identifying Kristin Shepard, J.R.’s wife’s sister and his former mistress, as the culprit.

The CBS television network debuted the first five-episode pilot season of ‘Dallas’ in 1978; it went on to run for another 12 full-length seasons. The first show of its kind, “Dallas” was dubbed a “primetime soap opera” for its serial plots and dramatic tales of moral excess.

That summer, the question “Who Shot J.R.?” entered the national lexicon, becoming a popular t-shirt slogan, and heightening anticipation of the soap’s third season, which was to air in the fall. After a much-talked-about contract dispute with Larry Hagman was finally settled, the season was delayed because of a Screen Actors Guild strike, much to the dismay of fans. When it finally aired, the episode revealing J.R.’s shooter became one of television’s most watched shows, with an audience of 83 million people in the U.S. alone—a full 76 percent of all U.S. televisions on that night were tuned in—and helped put ‘Dallas’ into greater worldwide circulation. It also popularized the use of the cliffhanger by television writers.

The shooting of J.R. wasn’t “Dallas'” only notorious plot twist. In September 1986, fans learned that the entire previous season, in which main character Bobby Ewing had died, was merely a dream of Pam’s. The show’s writers had killed the Bobby character off because Duffy had decided to leave the show. When he agreed to return, they featured him stepping out of the shower on the season-ending cliffhanger, and then were forced the next season to explain his sudden reappearance.

The last premiere episode of ‘Dallas’ aired on May 3, 1991. A spin-off, ‘Knots Landing’, aired from December 27, 1979 until May 13, 1993. ‘Dallas’ remains in syndication around the world. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_iwxkaKhnE

The reveal of Who Shot JR in US Soap/Drama Dallas. First Transmission : November 21st 1980 R.I.P Larry Hagman (1931-2012) Enjoy! Please comment, like and sub…
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The Amazing Hazard Reeves…July 6, 1906 – December 23, 1986

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The Amazing Hazard Reeves…July 6, 1906 – December 23, 1986

Yesterday I promised a deeper look in to just who Hazard Reeves was and what he did. Here is a 1955 bio issued by Cinerama that tells most of the story. Cinerama? Yes…guess who had a major roll in it’s creation. At the bottom of the article is a video clip about Cinerama.
Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

When some fifty of America’s leading orchestral artists cheer a recorded version of their own performance, that’s news. Yet that is precisely what happened after each recording session of the score for ‘This Is Cinerama’, the film that introduces to the world a thrilling new motion picture experience.

For Cinerama is not only a new kind of movie to look at, it offers a new kind of sound to listen to. “Stereophonic sound,” it is called, a sound that literally surrounds an audience. For the first time voices and music come from the screen from the right or the left, from before or behind, to correspond to the position of the actual performers. For the first time orchestral sound is spread across the breadth of a stage instead of being constricted into a single loudspeaker. It was this new dimension of space that won the applause of Cinerama’s special orchestra, drawn from members of the NBC Symphony, the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic. “Never before,” they said, “have we been able to hear ourselves precisely as others hear us.”

Behind this remarkable innovation in recorded sound is a personable young pioneer in sound recording techniques. His name is Hazard Reeves – “Buzz” Reeves to those who know him better. At 46 Reeves is recognized as one of the leading sound engineers in the country, and an extremely able executive as well. Not only is he President of Cinerama, Inc., the firm that develops and produces all Cinerama equipment, but he also heads his own Reeves Soundcraft Corp., the largest sound service laboratory in the East.

Baltimore born, Reeves took his degree from Georgia Tech in 1928, then headed north for a job in the research engineering department of the Columbia Phonograph Co. Soon after, he was appointed as special consultant to the Harvard University Film Foundation, a, connection which proved decisive in his life. Since that time, Reeves has been the expert on sound film problems and sound equipment. By 1933 Reeves was on his own. He opened his own studio in New York, began designing special recording equipment, established a preview projection service that is still widely used by the film industry in New York. He developed a magnetic tape, his Magnastripe process, primarily as a flexible system for sound recording in the field. Immediately adopted by virtually all documentary film producers, the Magnastripe became Reeves’ clue to the revolutionary sound system he developed for Cinerama.

Reeves met Fred Waller, Cinerama’s inventor, for the first time when the two were working together on a special installation for the Eastman Kodak exhibit at the New York World’s Fair in 1939. The two men hit it off immediately. Both were extremely practical inventors, both had unconventional ideas. When Waller showed Reeves an early model of his Cinerama camera, Reeves began to think of a multidimensional sound to go with it. In fact, he did more than that. He invested in the Cinerama process himself, aiding Waller through the long and costly period of designing and displaying a working model of his camera.

When the war came along, Reeves, with several of his associates, founded the Reeves-Ely Laboratories specifically to manufacture a very difficult crystal for the U. S. Army Signal Corps. Within less than a year the company had contracts totaling many millions of dollars and had won the Army-Navy “E” Award for merit. During the course of the war, Reeves-Ely won the “E” Award four times.

In 1946 Reeves set up his Soundcraft Corp., an organization producing recording tape and film, record discs, wire cable, television tubes and cameras and precision recording equipment. It was at this point that he began to devote himself increasingly to the problems of Cinerama’s sound. He knew that he wanted the highest fidelity of reproduction. But more than that, he hoped to reproduce in sound the new dimensions of the Cinerama screen.

Reeves’ method of recording directionally made possible the accurate placing of sound. The instruments in a symphony orchestra are heard in their proper positions on the stage. The voice of a singer off to the left actually comes from the left side of the screen; a trumpet call on the right is heard from the right.

Even more sensational is the effect of being surrounded by sound. In Cinerama’s famous roller coaster ride, the illusion of being in the front car of a scenic railway is immeasurably heightened by the realistic clatter and then the screams that seem to come from all about the spectators – as well as, frequently, from the spectators themselves.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lII5rXbxcCs


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Don’t Look Now, But…

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This was a January 1956 storm that hit the California coast with huge waves. The surfers may have loved it, but KTLA lost a camera covering the event…don’t know if it was this one or another, but this cameraman is about to get a big surprise. Thanks to David Zoning fro the pix. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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Remember Hullabaloo? January 12, 1965 – August 29, 1966, NBC

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Remember Hullabaloo? January 12, 1965 – August 29, 1966, NBC

This was NBC’s answer to ABC’s ‘Shindig’, a half hour primetime music show for us teenagers. I remember both well, do you?

The show was taped in three different locations for some reason. It usually came from NBC Brooklyn, but Studio 8H also hosted some episodes. NBC Burbank also did some shows there, but I think there were less than a dozen from there.

There are two videos and four photos here. One video is matches the rehearsal photo of The Beau Brummels, and the second is a color opening with Gary and Jerry Lewis singing “Help”. The first picture (the big one) shows ‘Man From UNCLE” star Robert Vaughn hosting and notice the floor level TK41 mounted on a rolling palate…that must have been fun to operate.

Next is the Beau Brummel rehearsal at Brooklyn, then Leslie Gore and finally Frank Sinatra Jr. with The Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra. Given the cue card and cardboard viewfinder shades, I think these photos were all taken in Brooklyn. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CGSPRTK7ke8 Color Intro
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJwiysp47bU Beau Brummel





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The Early Days Of Audio Recording – Bing Crosby & Ampex, Part 1

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The Early Days Of Audio Recording At Bing Crosby & Ampex, Part 1

Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve had a lot of exposure to magnetic recording, especially video. We’ve also learned just how deeply involved Bing Crosby and Ampex were in building the foundations of this media, so today, we are going to look at the beginning of audio tape and it’s use in radio with the help of a man who was there for it all…Robert R. Phillips.

Below is Part 1 of Mr. Philips first hand account of the problems and solutions Bing Crosby encountered when he decided to leave live radio and instead, record his shows. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee
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Bing Crosby was one of the pioneers of the radio music show. Beginning in 1935 the “Kraft Music Hall” on the NBC Red Network was a standard. It was a quality live production that held a high position in the ratings over the years. However, the summer of 1945 was a turning point in this standard. Bing decided that doing a live show every week was too demanding, and it did not permit him to pursue his other interests and to be with his family. During one period the show had to be done live twice, once for the east coast and once for the west coast, which also added to the work load. It also was confining, since it all had to be done within a certain regime that took away Bing’s casual side. The adlibs and jokes had to be done according to the script; there was no editing to remove mistakes.

The Bing Crosby show was aired on the elite Red Network of NBC that would not permit recorded shows; they had to be live broadcasts. So, the 1945 – 1946 “Kraft Music Hall” program began without Bing because of the dispute. The show went on, and NBC and Kraft sued him for not appearing. He returned to finish the season beginning with the 7 February 1946 program, but that was the end of Bing on the NBC Red Network. This time Bing had set his mind to having a prerecorded production. However, his current Bing Crosby Productions organization headed by his brother Everett did not have the talent to establish a prerecorded show operation and the technical support it needed. In December of 1945 Bing hired Basil Grillo to help him with this task and improve the operation of Bing Crosby Productions.

In 1941 the US Government broke up the NBC empire and made it sell its Blue Network. NBC had its sophisticated programs on the Red Network and the other features like jazz on the Blue Network. In July 1943 NBC announced the sale of its Blue network, but it took several years for ABC to develop its own programs. They shared the NBC facilities at Sunset and Vine in Hollywood until at least 1948. After the breakup ABC needed programs with high ratings and the upcoming 1946 – 1947 season was no exception. They told Bing that if he joined ABC he could record his show but the quality had to be equal to the live broadcast. It was to be a 30 minute show known as the “Philco Radio Time” program.

A number of events happened during January 1946 before Bing accepted the ABC offer. Bing Crosby Enterprises was reorganized, and a division of it was dedicated to the production of the prerecorded radio show. It included a person, Francis (Frank) Healey, to supervise the technical parts of the production. Prior to this Bing did not have his own technical staff, since the NBC engineers provided that support. By the end of January 1946, Bing had settled with NBC and was well on the way to having his own prerecorded show on ABC.

The new 1946 – 1947 “Philco Radio Time” program began with Bing Crosby recording his show on transcription disks using the NBC recording facilities assigned to ABC and supervised by Frank Healey. However, all was not well with this new production. The recordings on the disks lacked the quality of the live show and the editing process was difficult. The show was done as a live production, but with additional recorded material that could be used if there was a problem. While it took two disks (15 minutes each) for the thirty minute show, the recordings were edited before the show was played at the appointed time on the ABC network.

The prerecorded show permitted changes to be made if Bing or his staff did not like something in the show. The sponsor also was known to require changes that could not be done with a live show. The editing process was difficult, since it required recording from one disk to another several times. At least two or three playback units were required to permit the different parts to be merged on to a new recording disk, and with each copy the sound quality dropped. At times this process took over forty disks and many days to complete the edit. The result was the recorded show was less than desirable, and the radio audience noticed the difference. The ratings dropped, and ABC began to question if they should not return to the live broadcast.

Below is a photo of how the early audio set up looked with a multitude of turntables and a singe Ampex 200 recorder.


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The Early Days Of Audio Recording – Bing Crosby & Ampex, Part 2

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The Early Days Of Audio Recording At Bing Crosby & Ampex, Part 2

Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve had a lot of exposure to magnetic recording, especially video. We’ve also learned just how deeply involved Bing Crosby and Ampex were in building the foundations of this media, so today, we are going to look at the beginning of audio tape and it’s use in radio with the help of a man who was there for it all…Robert R. Phillips.

Below is Part 2 of Mr. Philips first hand account of the problems and solutions Bing Crosby encountered when he decided to leave live radio and instead, record his shows. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

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While the Crosby show was struggling with the disk recordings, a new technology had arrived. Jack Mullin had returned from his World War II service with parts for two German Magnetophon magnetic tape recorders that he had shipped back in mail sacks over a number of months. Instead of going back to the telephone company, he joined a friend, William Palmer, in a recording and movie business. William Palmer had a machine shop where they restored and modified the Magnetophon. Jack made new electronics using standard American parts and replaced the DC bias with AC bias to improve the tape signal-to-noise and added pre-emphasis for the high frequencies. These rebuilt Magnetophon recorders were then used in their recording business.

In May 1946 Jack Mullin demonstrated the modified Magnetphon recorder at an IRE (IEEE) show in San Francisco with the help of William Palmer. This demonstration caused a number of people to take notice of the quality that could be obtained from a magnetic tape recorder. There were other tape recorders at that time, but none of them had the outstanding quality of the rebuilt Magnetophon. During the following months William Palmer set up a number of demonstrations of the recorder for Jack to various movie, recording and broadcast people. The demonstrations showed that the recorder could reproduce sound as if it were live. Not only that, the magnetic tape could be edited by cutting it with a pair of scissors and splicing it with Scotch tape.

These demonstrations were more of a novelty to the industry than a major step forward. After all there were only two recorders and only 50 rolls of tape that no longer was made. The movie companies had made other agreements for their sound tracks, and the recording companies were happy with their recording process. During the demonstrations in the summer of 1947 Frank Healey, who was involved with technical production of the Crosby show, heard a demonstration and encouraged Murdo McKenzie, the producer of the Bing Crosby show, to investigate them for the show. Murdo arranged for a demonstration in San Francisco where Jack and Bill Palmer had their business. This demonstration was after the bad experience with the disk recordings, and Crosby now was faced with the prospect of finding a new way of recording the show or reverting to live broadcasts again. Murdo was so impressed with the tape process that he arranged for Bing to hear the demonstration, which took place about the first of August 1947 in Los Angeles. When Bing heard the sound quality and saw the editing, Jack Mullin was asked to do a test recording of the first Bing Crosby show of the 1947 – 1948 season. It was only a week way, and the Crosby people expressed concerns that Jack had only two recorders and a limited amount of tape. There needed to be way forward other than just the Magnetophon.

Jack had made an agreement with Colonel Ranger of Ranger Industries a year earlier to provide him with information so that Ranger could build a version of the Magnetophon and supply tape for it. Tests had shown that the Minnesota Mining (3M) tape would not work with the German recorder. By this time 3M had developed a black oxide plastic backed tape that evolved from their paper backed tape. It was the Scotch Magnetic Tape No. 100 designed for the Brush recorder, which was an early tape recorder. However, the Magnetophon needed a tape that could record a stronger magnetic field and have a better signal-to-noise ratio. The research group at 3M realized this need and set out to develop a higher grade tape using a red oxide, not knowing what the target machine would be. During this period Ampex also had decided to build a broadcast quality tape recorder and asked Jack for assistance, but Jack could not help due to the agreement with Colonel Ranger. As the date for the Crosby recording session approached the tension grew. Colonel Ranger did come to Los Angeles with his two recorders but no new tape. His tape recorders were set up along side the Magnetophon recorders in the recording department of NBC who was still supporting ABC. The show was held on the evening of 10 August 1947, and the moment of truth had come. The NBC engineers recorded the show on the standard disk lathes, and Jack Mullin and Colonel Ranger also recorded on their respective machines. Murdo asked Ranger to play his recording first, and it was terrible with distortion and noise. Jack was next, and history was made. The first radio show to be recorded on magnetic tape was broadcast on 1 October 1947.

Jack, who was still working for Palmer, was given an old studio and control room in the NBC (ABC) facilities where he could set up his machines and do the recording and editing of the show. It also served as his office. The 1947 – 1948 season was the first time a radio program was aired from a magnetic tape recording even though the program was transferred to disk for broadcast. This transfer was due to the need to preserve the tape and insure that a tape break would not disrupt the broadcast. The quality of the show had improved even though disks were used, since the show was only transferred in final form and not edited on the disks. However, more important, the ratings of the show improved and the prerecorded show was preserved. The first step had been taken, but a bigger problem still needed to be addressed – new recorders and tape.

Alexander M. Poniatoff, the head of Ampex, heard one of the early demonstrations of the Magnetphon. He was in need of a new postwar product and was so taken by the recorder he decided to build one. He put his chief engineer, Harold Lindsay, in charge of the project and asked Jack Mullin to help them. Unfortunately Jack had already made the agreement with Colonel Ranger by that time, but Ampex decided to go ahead with the project anyway. After the poor showing of his recorders to the Crosby group, Colonel Ranger was persuaded by them and Jack Mullin to give up his agreement with Mullin. Jack was now free, and a call was placed to Ampex in October 1947. Minnesota Mining (3M) also was brought in as the tape supplier.

Ampex by the spring of 1948 had developed their first prototype, but lacked finances to bring it to market. The banks did not have any idea about venture capital at that time. Pressure once again began to build because the Bing Crosby show needed new recorders and tape for the 1948 – 1949 season. Everyone was convinced that Ampex was the answer, and Bing sent them a check for $50,000 in just an envelope without any cover letter. It was what Ampex needed to begin production of the Ampex 200. In late 1947 Jack Mullin visited Minnesota Mining (3M) to see if they could provide the required magnetic tape to work with the Magnetophon and the future Ampex recorder. By then they had started development of their new red oxide tape that would work with the Ampex recorder. Jack Mullin began to work with Robert Herr and William Wetzel of 3M conducting tests to help develop a high quality magnetic tape for audio recording. His work focused on the dropout rating, frequency response and signal-to-noise for the different test tapes that 3M produced. The result was the Scotch Magnetic Tape No.111 that later evolved into the No. 111A. For these efforts by Bing and Jack, Bing Crosby Enterprises (BCE) was awarded in 1948 the distributorship west of the Mississippi River for the Ampex recorders and the 3M tape. The Electronic Division of BCE under Frank Healey was given responsibility to market and service these products. The division began to grow when Jack Mullin left Palmer to become its chief engineer in August 1948 to support the development work with Ampex and 3M and in 1949 with the addition of a salesman, Tommy Davis.

Harold Lindsay led the team to produce the Ampex 200 for Alex Poniatoff and Bing in the 1948. It was housed in a polished black wood console with a stainless steel top that caused it to be called the most beautiful recorder to be made. The Crosby show received the first two of them, serial numbers 1 and 2, in time for the 1948 – 1949 season. Later the only two portable Ampex 200 recorders built, serial numbers 13 and 14, were delivered. Each of them consisted of two wooden boxes with handles. It took at least two people to carry each case, but they were taken everywhere the Crosby show went during the later part of the 1948 -1949 season, even to Canada. Jack Mullin described how they had to push and pull the four boxes up a spiral staircase to reach one of the upper dressing rooms where the recorders were set up. The audio mixing was done at the stage level using the RCA OP-6 and OP-7 equipment. The output was fed over a telephone line to the recording location.

By the 1949 – 1950 season the Bing Crosby show had moved to CBS, and BCE had to establish its own recording-editing facility. It was a small facility located in the CBS Columbia Square Complex at 6121 Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood. It was on the second floor in the east wing of the complex. The recorders were located in the front of the building. There were two windows that were open most of the time, and people on Sunset Boulevard could hear the editing process. The three Ampex 300 recorders were on a waist-high shelf with a special tape speed control unit and acoustical equalizer at one end. In the hallway outside the room, there were shelves of indexed tapes of past recording sessions. By 1950 others like Robert McKinney were involved in the recording and editing of the show. In Hollywood the live show was done at the CBS studios and in a theater behind CBS. The microphone placement and mixing of the show was done by Norm Dewes. He was a true professional held in high esteem by Jack Mullin. It has been said that the balance of the shows recorded was outstanding. There were no multiple tracks, just one channel that was fed to the recorders.

Those of us in the recording room had no visible contact with what was happening. I used to sing along with Bing during the recording sessions, since I was the only one there at times. I may have sung more “duets” with him than most people, but it helped to learn his phrasing for editing.

During the first two seasons that used the magnetic tape recorders, the Crosby radio show was recorded in front of a live audience when Bing was available. There were recorded rehearsals, but the editing process was limited by having only two recorders. The first season that was recorded on the old Magnetophon tape had to be transferred to transcription disks because of concerns about the old tape breaking. With the new Ampex recorders and 3M tape, this transfer was no longer required, but the editing was still limited by having only two Ampex 200 recorders.

With the recording of the show, Bing was more relaxed and the audience had more fun with the adlibs, since mistakes could be repaired. The quality was equal to a live show, and the broadcast version was mistake free. With the portable recorders the show also could be taken on the road, if Bing wanted to travel. By early 1949 Ampex had begun to produce the Ampex 300, which was smaller and lighter than the Ampex 200. The big plus was that the Bing Crosby show now had three recorders for the 1949 – 1950 season. These changes opened the door to new innovation, and the Crosby show did not lose time in coming up with new ways to record a radio show.

The historic photos below have details on each frame so please click each one.




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November 19, 1959…America Meets Rocky And Bullwinkle

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November 19, 1959…America Meets Rocky And Bullwinkle

Today is the anniversary of the debut of one of my all time favorite cartoon shows…probably one of yours too. The show debuted as ‘Rocky And His Friends’ on ABC and although done in color, it was broadcast in black and white. Before third season began in 1961, the show moved to NBC where it was broadcast in color and called ‘The Bullwinkle Show’.

Below is a clip of the main voices of the show, June Foray and Bill Scott talking about their “adventures”. Other famous voices on the show included William Conrad as the narrator, Paul Frees as Boris Badenov, Wally Tetley as Sherman, Daws Butler as Aesop Junior and various other characters, Charlie Ruggles as Aesop, Hans Conried as Snidely Whiplash and Edward Everett Horton as the narrator for Fractured Fairy Tales. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ieOGZtGUjRQ

This is a classic view of Bill Scott and June Foray. Bill sadly is no longer with us but June still is! This has local Boston content June has roots in Bosto…
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ABC Hollywood…1533-44 North Vine Street, A Truly Historic Address

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ABC Hollywood…1533-44 North Vine Street, A Truly Historic Address

Did you know America’s first network Disc Jockeys broadcast from this building? Or, that this was ABC’s first studio? As we’ll see below, all that and more is true, but let’s start with the building itself.

As you see in the first (big) photo from 1944, this was a bowling alley but not just any bowling alley. When the Hollywood Recreation Center was built in 1940, this was claimed to be the largest and most modern in the nation with 22 lanes and I think it was open 24 hours to accommodate all the people working at NBC and CBS, just down the block. Notice in this photo, on the right, just up from NBC is the Vine Street Brown Derby location and across the street, we see The Tropics Restaurant which was later owned by Tom Breneman.

Breneman was host of the radio show ‘Breakfast In Hollywood’ which aired on the Blue Network owned by NBC and later ABC. The show aired from 1941 to 1948.

By the mid-1940s, Breneman had ten million listeners on ABC. The popularity of the radio program was such that he created his own magazine, and in 1945 he opened his own establishment and broadcast his show live from Tom Breneman’s Restaurant. Initially, his show was in The Tropics Restaurant location, but soon after, he was able to buy the Hollywood Recreation Center and he moved his show into this now giant restaurant. In this clip from his movie ‘Breakfast In Hollywood’, you can see him arrive at this location. http://youtu.be/yTVzsovp358?t=10m16s

On April 28, 1948, just before the broadcast of ‘Breakfast In Hollywood’ was to begin Breneman had a heart attack and died. Garry Moore took over hosting duties but the show quickly failed without Breneman.

After the radio program ended Sammy Davis Jr. and a few investors purchased the building. I think they held it for only a year before putting it on the market and by late 1949 or early 1950, ABC’s KECA and the ABC radio network studios were in the building. Before this, the ABC network programs from Hollywood had originated in three auxiliary studios down the street at NBC, which was part of the deal in their purchase of the Blue Network in 1943.

According to our friend Joel Tator, ABC’s radio studios there were initially called studios X, Y and Z, but were later changed to A, B and C. There were not any dedicated television studios in this building, but occasionally, live broadcasts were done with a remote unit from Studio A which was the largest radio studio. B and C were radio only.

Now called The ABC Radio Center, Eddie Cantor and Frank Sinatra both became disc jockey’s at ABC and are believed to be the first network radio DJs. In fairness, listeners to New York’s 1130 WNEW were awaiting developments in the Lindbergh kidnapping trial, radio personality Martin Block built an audience by playing records between the Lindbergh news bulletins. This led to Block’s show, ‘The Make Believe Ballroom’, which began February 3, 1935. There were other local stations using DJs, but Sinatra and Cantor are thought to be the first to do it on a network.

I don’t know when ABC left here, but before I go to what happened next in this building, I want to say that I think when ABC took over this building, it was the first time the radio network had offices of it’s own. I think ABC was still sharing the NBC facilities in NCY, Chicago and WDC till a year or so after this.

Jumping ahead, after ABC left 1533 Vine Street, Trans American Video (TAV) took over the building sometime around 1974 I think. This is where ‘The Merv Griffin Show’ came from. Today, only the facade remains and the interior is condos and retail space. More detail on the photos so please click through them. Thanks to all that helped with the gathering of this info, including David Schwartz. Enjoy and SHARE THIS! It’s the most complete look at this historic address yet. -Bobby Ellerbee










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The Answer To A Chicken & Egg Question On Video Tape…

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The Answer To A Chicken & Egg Question On Video Tape…

As I wrote and posted these 3M stories on video tape’s development, I kept wondering how Ampex could develop their machines if 3M only joined the party the day before the debut. If 3M didn’t make videotape before the debut, then who did?

Here’s the answer…Reeves Sound Craft, headed by none other than Hazard Reeves. Most of us know the Reeves name from Reeves Teletape, but he has an amazing background that we’ll look at tomorrow.

As for the videotape, I think Reeves had a plant in Connecticut that began making audio tape in 1950. Remember, RCA was also working on videotape and in the photo below, we see Reeves with RCA’s David Sarnoff and a reel of his videotape. I think this photo is from around 1953. If you have a Hazard Reeves story, let us know! Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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“The Rest Of The Story”…3M’s Development Of Videotape (RARE)

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“The Rest Of The Story”…A Narrative By Neil Gjere

Thanks to Neil’s efforts, over this past week, we have been able to see things few have ever seen and get to meet the man behind the creation of the world’s first commercially available brand of video tape. Without him, we would not have been able to see the 3M ’20 Years Of Video Tape’ production from 1976, see the remaining artifacts from those early days of have the great 18 page story of how it all happened from Mel Sater himself.

Below the line is Neil’s account of the meeting with Bob Sater and the history that unfolded. Enjoy! -Bobby Ellerbee

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One pass was all it took to digitize what had been sitting in a basement for thirty years. Probably because I had all manner of emergency machine cleaning supplies at the ready should I encounter a video tape “Code Blue”. If there was any question on the longevity of video tape, this performance was evidence of its durability. And probably testimonial to all of the outstanding work of 3M and the people of the program I shared earlier “20 Years of Videotape”

So now with the show safely preserved digitally, and having no real idea what to do with it, into the bag it went… For about a year. I work for the PBS affiliate here in St. Paul/Minneapolis and let me tell you, we have arguably the greatest group of donors anyone can ask for. And as a result, we maintain regular contact with them. One day, an email arrives from our head of Philanthropic Funding directed at us staff engineers in the form of a trivia question:

“Can any of you tell me what was the first show ever where video tape was used?” Of course, if you watched the previously posted show you know the answer. And at that time, so did I!

“Douglas Edwards and the News” was my reply. “But why do you ask?” I added

“Because I just had lunch with the son of the man who invented video tape and his wife, Bob and Gail Sater. And we wanted to see if we could stump you.”

Sater?

Now remember, this occurred a year after my little “dub” session so the contents of that program were a very faded memory. But Sater? Yeah that rings a bell.

I throw in a copy of the DVD I managed to find after a year of storage, and there he is. Mel Sater. I replied back to our now growing email thread and explained how I came to know the answer to the trivia question oh and one final thing, “I have something Bob may be interested in seeing.” As I explained the story, I offered up a copy to our head of Philanthropic Funding to present to the Sater’s as a gesture of thanks for being the wonderful donors they’ve been to the station these many years.

As I correctly assumed, Mel was no longer with us and I thought Bob and his family would appreciate seeing their Dad again even briefly. A few days go by and I receive another email from our donor Funding area: “I just spoke with Gail Sater and she was excited at the prospect of seeing her father-in-law after all these years and they would like to meet you as well! When are you available to meet?”

Now I begin to really start wrapping my head around this, all of the moments in this story up to now that have conspired to bring me to that very moment: The recording back in ’79, the call from my teacher thirty years later with his request, the discovery of the tape, the ability to have a machine available to even play the thing giving me the ability to re-record it digitally, the chance lunch, the trivia question, and now this: I’m going to meet the guy who’s DAD invented video tape!

On the day of the meeting, I was told that the DVD’s I had previously copied with the express intent of giving them to the Sater’s prior had not reached them. At their request. “We want to watch it with you both” Gail wrote in an e-mail to us confirming our appointment. “And we have a couple of things we’d like to share with you!” Oh? I think to myself…

As you can see by the pictures, Bob Sater is very much the image of his Dad. We had a very nice chat talking about family, grandkids, retirement, Bob and Gail were truly reflective of the kindness and generosity we are very fortunate to call our supporters.

Bob told the story about how the overnight “samples” were transported to a waiting aircraft which was idling on the runway at nearby Holman Field to an awaiting Bill Wetzel to make their trip to Chicago and the awaiting Ampex demonstration. And then, I pushed play on the DVD player. A nice little smile appeared on both Bob and Gail’s faces when “Melvin” had his moment of screen time. To see that alone was worth everything I’d done to that point to recover and save this piece of recorded history.

Even if no one else In the world ever saw it but us, it was worth this moment. At the end, Both Bob and Gail thanked me and told me they’d never seen nor heard of Mel even participating in the recording and were grateful to receive a copy. “But now we have something to share with you!” Gail exclaims. And with that, Bob, reaches under the table for a grocery bag I never even noticed entering the room with them and sets it on the table before all of us.

As he reaches into the bag, I have no idea what’s coming next. He pulls out a tape box…one many of us would recognize as being responsible for many back ailments if carried in quantity. “Go ahead and open it” Bob says with a smile.

As I do, I immediately recognize it as one of the “props” used in the 3M program ’20 Years Of Video Tape’ we’d just all watched. It was the “companion” reel of tape sent to Chicago for the 1956 NAB demonstration. It appears someone else kept a few items of history as well. As you can see by the pictures, it was every bit as crude as was shown when Mel held it up in the 20 Year video. Mel’s reminder to himself was in the form of notations in his own hand in the core of the cardboard reel.

I was truly holding a piece of broadcast history. As I sat stunned by what was in front of me, Gail produces another item from the bag in the form of a manila file folder. Contained inside were a collection of memorabilia that had been collected throughout the years marking the great achievement including Mel being the recipient of a Technical Emmy award as well as Mel’s own personal notes documenting much of the work he and his colleagues performed to end up with the product I was now holding in my hands. And last but not least, a small envelope.

As I opened it, Gail begins to tell me, “That is a piece of tape from the reel used for the actual demonstration back in 1956 with Mel’s own handwriting on the label” “We’d like you to have that.” Gail ends. Wow. What does a guy say? Could I say I had a few tears? Yeah, I could say that. Yes, I have it, and Yes, I will make sure it is treated with the utmost respect due an item which literally changed the world of broadcasting forever.

As for the actual companion reel of tape? It will remain in the Sater family for now but I most certainly offered up my services to make sure it finds a proper home when the time comes. And as another great broadcast pioneer Paul Harvey “once” said: “Now you have, the rest of the story.” -Neil Gjere

Below is a photo of Bob Sater with the companion roll of tape taken to Chicago for the first Ampex demonstration of video tape.


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The History Of 3M Video Tape Development By The Man Who Did It!

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The History Of Video Tape Development By The Man Who Did It!

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B45qjey77RdwQ3NGamlzLWtNN2s/edit?pli=1

At the link above is Melvin Sater’s 18 page account of those early days of developing the first commercially available line of video tape. Most of this amazing read has to do with the 1956 and ’57 period, but takes us into the mid ’60s and color tape.

Those first rolls used for the April ’56 NAB demonstration could only give 15 to 25 playbacks, but in order to switch from kinescopes to videotape that next summer, the networks needed something that would give them at least 65 to 100 playbacks.

The photo of the piece of tape from the April 12, 1957 CBS tests we saw yesterday is explained here and they were elated that they were able to get up to 390 replays before the tape broke down, but there were more hurdles to overcome. The 3M plant was working literally around the clock to produce enough tape for the summer of ’57 introduction, but 97% of the initial runs had to be scrapped and the manufacturing process modified.

By the way…they were flying blind on this! Ampex had not been able to get them a VTR to use in testing, so this was all theory and trial and error. History buffs will want to save this link and share it with their friends as this is the only place to find this on the web. Our thanks again to Neil Gjere for sharing this. Up next is Neil’s backstory of how he met Mel Sater’s son and was able to gather all this rare history, the iconic relics and rare photos. Enjoy and Share! -Bobby Ellerbee

Below is a photo of Mel Sater and Johnathan Winters. The EMMY was presented to Sater for his work in videotape development. The first use of videotape in a network show was a three minute black and white insert into ‘The Johnathan Winters Show’ by NBC in 1957. The prerecorded song by Dorothy Collins was inserted without fanfare to see if the viewing audience would notice it. They didn’t.


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History From A Different Angle…NBC Radio City West

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History From A Different Angle…NBC Radio City West

The street on the left is Sunset Boulevard and the next cross street is Vine Street. Less than a block behind the photographer is CBS Columbia Square and less than a block up on Vine Street was ABC’s broadcast center. This whole area was radio city!

Someone asked recently about when ABC went into that Vine Street location, and I can’t find a date on it, but I did find another interesting fact. When NBC sold the Blue Network to Edward J. Nobles for $8 million, that Blue package contained leases on land-lines and on studio facilities in New York, Washington, Chicago and Los Angeles; contracts with talent and with about sixty affiliates; the trademark and “good will” associated with the Blue name; and licenses for three stations…WJZ in New York, San Francisco’s KGO, and WENR in Chicago.

The lease allowed them 10 years to relocate the studios and transmitters. That happened in 1943, so, per the agreement, ABC could have operated from the NBC facilities until ’53, but I think they may have only stayed about six or seven years. I think that ABC Radio center was there on Vine before they built KECA TV in 1949 and I think that was at the Prospect Lot. Anyone have any information on the ABC Radio Vine Street facility? Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee


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A History Of Video Tape…Historic Artifacts, Part 2

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A History Of Video Tape…Historic Artifacts, Part 2

On April 13, 1956, 3M got a call from Ampex. They wanted 3M to make some “video tape” for the debut of their new VRX 1000 videotape recorder which was to be demonstrated publicly for the fist time THE NEXT DAY in Chicago at the NAB Convention.

The job fell to Melvin Sater. Along with Joe Massitello and Bill Wetzel, they somehow got the job done and took it to Chicago in time to test it once before the demonstration.

The photos below from Neil Gjere are of some very rare artifacts from those early days and I’ll tell you more on each photo so be sure and click on each one for details. More tomorrow, but I’ll leave you with this interesting fact…the quad heads on that VRX 1000 spun at 14,000 RPM or about 60 MPH and the tape had to withstand 1000 pounds of pressure per square inch. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee







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The 3M History Of Video Tape…Introduction, Part 1

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A History Of Video Tape…Introduction, Part 1

The presentation of this information will be as much of an experiment for me as 3M’s creation of a commercial line of video tape in only 22 hours.

On Thursday of last week, November 13, I posted the only online copy of the 3M video presentation of their ’20 Years Of Video Tape’ special that ran at the 1976 NAB show. That came from Neil Gjere who has also sent along some extremely rare things you will be seeing here. Among them is a fantastic 18 page report written by Melvin Sater, who as the leader of the 3M project to develop the first commercial line of video tape.

Before I post that, I need to post a few things that will get you familiar with the people and events that lead up to this, and this is the first introductory piece, or what the newsmen among us would call “a backgrounder”.

This is a 3M announcement that Mel Sater is recieving an EMMY for his work in video tape. In the section called “Sader’s Scramble”, you can read about the call from Ampex the day before video tape recording was introduced in 1956. Enjoy and share. -Bobby Ellerbee

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B45qjey77RdwYjhQdnVUTHJZTWc/edit?pli=1

3M Megaphone September 1983.pdf – Google Drive

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Happy Birthday To Mickey Mouse…86 Years Old Today

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Happy Birthday To Mickey Mouse…86 Years Old Today

On November 18, 1928, ‘Steamboat Willie’, starring Mickey Mouse, was released and shown in theaters across the country. It was wildly popular. This was the first cartoon with synchronized sound and was the first cartoon to feature a fully post-produced soundtrack which distinguished it from earlier sound cartoons.

Although animation filmmakers Dave and Max Fleischer’s Inkwell Studios had already produced seven sound cartoons, part of the Song Car-Tunes which started in May 1924, those failed to keep the sound fully synchronized. ‘Steamboat Willie’ was produced using a click track to help with musical cues. The click track was sufficiently useful as a synchronization tool as optical marks were made on the film to indicate precise timings for musical accompaniment.

In 1994 professional animators voted Steamboat Willie 13th in the book The 50 Greatest Cartoons, which listed the greatest cartoons of all time. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

By the way, Walt is the voice of Mickey in this historic cartoon, and although Mickey Mouse had been seen in theaters before this, his official birthday is marked as today in consideration of the success of ‘Steamboat Willie’.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BBgghnQF6E4

The classic Mickey Mouse cartoon
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November 13, 1976…Carol Burnett’s ‘Went With The Wind’ Sketch Debuted

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November 13, 1976…Carol Burnett’s ‘Went With The Wind’ Sketch Debut

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pjUYw2HKB7o
One of the funniest and most memorable moments in American television came to us thirty eight years ago this month. Above is a link to the entire 19 minute clip as it appeared in 1976.

In the clip below, Carol talks about the sketch and the dress. In another interview, I’ve heard her say that only she and Harvey Korman had seen the Bob Mackie dress. She had to let Havey in on the site gag or he would break up to and not be able to do his lines to set her up for the big payoff line, “I saw it in the window and couldn’t resist”. Harvey actually makes for a pretty convincing Rhett Butler doesn’t he? Have a laugh, enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

By the way, Carol’s entrance in the dress is at 13:11.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l0dqnZ2qyj4

Time Life’s The Carol Burnett Show — The Ultimate Collection: Now available! 50 episodes on 22 DVDs http://bit.ly/TLCarol BONUS: Showcase Collector’s Box + …
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Bonded Cellular = Live TV Anywhere, Anytime With No News Van?

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Bonded Cellular = Live TV Anywhere, Anytime With No News Van?

This is just amazing. It may be old hat to a lot of you, but I’m just learning about this and thought I’d pass this along. This video is a demonstration of how the top of the line, LiveU LU 70 backpack mobile unit works.

To explain just what Bonded Cellular is, here is how LiveU describes it at their website. http://www.liveu.tv/

“The LiveU solution bonds up to 14 cellular (3G/4G – LTE/WiMAX) modems over multiple carriers, as well as multiple LAN and even BGAN satellite connections. This creates a reliable, broadband video uplink pipe over multiple narrow-band pipes. Using any camera, the fully-integrated self-powered compact unit provides video resolution ranging from CIF through D1 (SD) and up to 1080i HD. The bonded 3G/4G solution aggregates all data connections simultaneously to achieve high bandwidth and smooth transmission, even as bandwidth and signal levels change across the different connections.”

We learn something new everyday don’t we? Thanks to CNN’s Andy Rose for bringing this to my attention. Enjoy and share! -Bobby Ellerbee

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BfPn8rgeaKQ

LiveU is the live unit that allows you to Go Live Anywhere, Anytime. www.LiveU.com. LiveU is the Live Unit we all have dreamed of, and Ari Epstein of LiveU I…
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