by Steven Johnson
I am 46 years old and an avid fan of old time radio shows, especially radio comedies. My love for them started many years ago when I used to listen to satellite radio and enjoyed listening to their channel which broadcasts old time radio shows. I even bought a few collections on cassettes many years ago. Fast forward some odd years. I no longer have satellite radio and don't listen to my cassettes anymore but have a several complete series (of existing episodes) of several comedies.
I own Our Miss Brooks, The Life of Riley, Archie Andrews, Blondie, Burns and Allen, The Aldrich Family, My Favorite Husband, and my newest acquisition Fibber McGee and Molly. I also have additional shows that are not complete series but complement the series I have such as the three versions of Backseat Driver from Suspense which stars Jim and Marion Jordan of Fibber McGee and Molly fame, the Lux Radio Theater version of The Life of Riley movie, radio versions of several movies and assorted shows starring Jim and Marion Jordan , assorted shows and interviews with Jim Jordan after Marion's death, interview with Bob Hastings who played Archie Andrews, the I Love Lucy radio audition, the Truth or Consequences episode with William Bendix as his Life of Riley character, The Jack Benny Show guest hosted by George Burns and Gracie Allen, and several others. I also have audio from several skits from The Carol Burnett Show as well.
I used to listen to my collection which at that time consisted of Our Miss Brooks, Archie Andrews, and My Favorite Husband on my phone as one jumbled playlist mixed with the Carol Burnett skits. Then I got Burns and Allen which consists of a large number of episodes. A huge chunk of what would play would be Burns and Allen which was too much since I preferred my other shows. So then I started listening to a different show every day so I could enjoy each show in a more enjoyable way. Eventually I added days devoted to all my shows mixed up but not mixing in all the Burns and Allen on those days.
Which brings me to present day. I listen to all my shows on a set bi-weekly schedule. Why? I really enjoy listening to my shows that way and really enjoy being in control of what I call "my own personal old time radio show network" or "my own personal Me-TV" referring to the classic tv network Me-TV.
My current schedule:
|Sunday||Every other Sunday is Order Up! featuring The Life of Riley in order from start to finish.
The other Sundays is My Favorite Husband all randomly shuffled.
Radio Jewelguy featuring all my shows (The Life of Riley, The Aldrich Family, Blondie, Archie Andrews, My Favorite Husband, and Our Miss Brooks plus 100 randomly selected Burns and Allen and 250 randomly selected Fibber McGee and Molly [both half hour and 15-minute episodes]) all randomly shuffled.
Every other Wednesday is Fibber McGee and Molly half hour episodes all randomly shuffled.
|Thursday||Our Miss Brooks all randomly shuffled.|
|Friday||Every other Friday is The Life of Riley all randomly shuffled.
The other Fridays is The Aldrich Family all randomly shuffled.
Every other Saturday is Saturday Morning Burns & Allen and Radiotoons All-Day featuring every Burns and Allen, Archie Andrews, and Blondie all randomly shuffled.
On all days except the days I play The Life of Riley and Fibber McGee and Molly in order, the Carol Burnett skits are randomly shuffled in with the shows. I am unable to randomly shuffle them in the playlists where I play Riley and Fibber in order. I create a new schedule every "season" (around the same times tv channels change their schedules).
I never know what playing ahead of time except I do know what the next episode will be but I don't look further into my playlists.
As strange as this may sound, listening to my shows this way actually provide me with major benefits. The biggest benefits: helping to reduce my everyday stress and keeping me from getting depressed. My current health situation along with stressful situations at home give me constant stress and depression.
Another benefit: no matter how busy I am, I always can listen to my shows while doing what needs to be done. The only exception: I can't listen to my shows at work. I am a grocery store cashier. Doing yard work is a lot more easier and fun while listening to your favorite shows.
I make it a point to listen to my shows each and every day. Yet I make sure it doesn't take over my life. I just let it compliment and enrich my life.
Are you looking for a drug-free way to reduce stress and depression? Do you enjoy old time radio shows? Do you have a creative side where you like to organize things like activity schedules? Then this may be something you may want to try. Don't let anyone tell you that it's stupid to listen to your shows that way. Do it exactly the way you want in a way that relaxes and destresses you and helps keep depression away. Just make sure you use shows that you personally like.
P.S. Special thanks to OTRCAT for allowing me this awesome opportunity to share my love of old-time radio shows to the world and sharing the unique way I have of listening to them!