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Brett Halliday Collection

Brett Halliday's greatest contribution to the detective fiction genre was the creation of "that reckless, red-headed Irishman", Michael Shayne.

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53 old time radio show recordings
(total playtime 24 hours, 58 min)
available in the following formats:

1 MP3 CD
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27 Audio CDs


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Play a sample episode from May 21, 1945:

"The Murder Trial of Jack Holmes"



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About this Old Time Radio Show

Text on OTRCAT.com ©2001-2017 OTRCAT INC All Rights Reserved. Reproduction is prohibited.

 Brett Halliday: Tickets for Death Bret Halliday Book: What Really Happened

Part of a mystery writer’s craft is the ability to wrap up all of the reader’s questions by the end of the story. A little bit of mystery about the writer himself may or may not be a good thing, but hopefully it can help to sell stories.

Brett Halliday

Brett Halliday’s greatest contribution to the detective fiction genre was the creation of “that reckless, red-headed Irishman”, Michael Shayne. If there is a formula for creating a hard-boiled fictional detective, Halliday followed it to the letter when he created Shayne. In fact, more than one has called Michael Shayne the "generic private eye." He solves the problems he runs across with a pretty equal measure of brains and brawn (although in later stories he tends to use his fists more than the gray matter). He was quick to notice a pretty girl and they noticed him as well, but his heart belonged to his pretty wife (who was eventually killed off in the series to help sell more novels). He could be moody and distant, and according to his creator he downed a bottle of Martell Cognac each day.

Halliday claimed that his fictional detective on a real life character. When Halliday was working as a merchant seaman his ship stopped in Tampico to take on a load of crude oil. A group of seamen wandered into a waterside bar where one of the patrons was a red headed American sitting alone, sipping his cognac. When a fight broke out, the burly red head jumped into the fray and carried Halliday out of the bar and away from the fracas. Years later, Halliday says he ran into the same character in a dive in New Orleans. When he sat down and reintroduced himself, a pair of large, unsavory characters came into the bar, and our hero disappeared into the French Quarter night, never to be seen again.

Shane would appear in 77 novels, 300 short stories, and several movies as well as on the radio. Not bad for someone who never really existed, but then again, his creator was a fictional character himself.

Maybe not completely fictional, but Brett Halliday was in fact one of the non de plumes used by Davis Dresser. Halliday was not the only alias that Dresser wrote under, nor was he the only writer to use write as Brett Halliday. Several other writers created stories for the Michael Shayne franchise, and most writing under the creator’s name.

Davis Dresser better known as Brett HallidayDavis Dresser’s background is worthy of a character in an adventure novel. He was born in Chicago but grew up in West Texas. Sometimes working as a cowboy, an accident as a boy cost him an eye, and he wore an eye patch for the rest of his life. At 14, he ran away to join the US Calvary at Ft. Bliss and worked for the US Border Patrol. He also worked as a deckhand on a freighter, a muleskinner, an oilfield worker and several other jobs before settling back in Texas where he took a degree as a civil engineer and working as a surveyor before taking up the writing trade.

The various Michael Shayne radio series gave Brett Halliday credit for creating the character, but he was never credited with writing any of the scripts. Halliday did take over hosting duties of Murder by Experts from fellow mystery writer John Dickson Carr. The show’s concept was unique. Each week the host would select a favored mystery writer (an ‘expert’ in murder) who would then select a favorite story by another author which would be dramatized. As a device for selling mystery stories, this seems like marketing genius; three different authors were getting a plug every week.

The fact that Brett Halliday was a nom de plume used by several writers has led to speculation that the voice heard on Murder by Experts was an actor hired to play Halliday and not Davis Dresser. However, during this period Dresser was actively writing for the Michael Shayne franchise, if not for the radio characterization.                                                                     

Text on OTRCAT.com ©2001-2017 OTRCAT INC All Rights Reserved. Reproduction is prohibited.

These classic recordings are available in the following formats:
  • MP3 CDs are delivered by mail. These archival quality MP3 CDs are playable in your computer and many MP3 player devices.



    53 recordings on 1 MP3 CD for just $4.50
    total playtime 24 hours, 58 min
    Add MP3 Collection to Cart

    Click here to see disc contents


      53 shows - total playtime 24 hours 58 minutes
      1. Michael Shayne 450409 026 Haunted House.mp3
      2. Michael Shayne 450416 027 Date At Cliff House.mp3
      3. Michael Shayne 450423 028 Body In Trunk.mp3
      4. Michael Shayne 450430 029 Pirates In San Francisco Bay.mp3
      5. Michael Shayne 450507 030 Big Voice Means Big Body.mp3
      6. Michael Shayne 450514 031 Date With Wedding.mp3
      7. Michael Shayne 450521 032 Murder Trial Of Jack Holmes.mp3
      8. Michael Shayne 450528 033 Recreate Murder.mp3
      9. Michael Shayne 450604 034 Judge Stanton Murdered.mp3
      10. Michael Shayne 450611 035 Mary Noble Suspects Uncle Briggs.mp3
      11. Michael Shayne 450618 036 Investment In An Invention.mp3
      12. Michael Shayne 450625 037 Body By Piano.mp3
      13. Michael Shayne 450702 038 Malcolm Boyd Case.mp3
      14. Michael Shayne 450709 039 Gossip Writer.mp3
      15. Michael Shayne 450716 040 Tire Oriental Lines.mp3
      16. Michael Shayne 450723 041 Strange Business Call.mp3
      17. Michael Shayne 450730 042 Museum Thefts.mp3
      18. Michael Shayne 450806 043 Missing Body.mp3
      19. Michael Shayne 450820 045 Red Lead Mystery.mp3
      20. Michael Shayne 450827 046 Behind Footlights.mp3
      21. Michael Shayne 450903 047 Signed, Rem.mp3
      22. Michael Shayne 450924 050 Shadow William P Pringle.mp3
      23. Michael Shayne 461105 005 Return To Huxley.mp3
      24. Michael Shayne 461112 002 Poisoned Fan.mp3
      25. Michael Shayne 480722 005 Hunted Bride.mp3
      26. Michael Shayne 480729 006 Blood Stained Pearls.mp3
      27. Michael Shayne 480806 007 Phantom Gun.mp3
      28. Michael Shayne 480820 009 Greyeyed Blonde.mp3
      29. Michael Shayne 480904 010 Generous Killer.mp3
      30. Michael Shayne 480911 011 Model Murder.mp3
      31. Michael Shayne 480918 012 Pursuit Of Death.mp3
      32. Michael Shayne 480925 013 Crooked Wheel.mp3
      33. Michael Shayne 481002 014 Wandering Fingerprints.mp3
      34. Michael Shayne 481009 015 Purloined Corpse.mp3
      35. Michael Shayne 481016 016 Lefthanded Fan.mp3
      36. Michael Shayne 481023 017 Deadly Dough.mp3
      37. Michael Shayne 481030 018 Popular Corpse.mp3
      38. Michael Shayne 481106 019 Bayou Monster.mp3
      39. Michael Shayne 481113 020 Problem In Murder.mp3
      40. Michael Shayne 481120 021 High Priced Twins.mp3
      41. Michael Shayne 481127 022 Carnival Killer.mp3
      42. Michael Shayne 481204 023 Constant Companion.mp3
      43. Michael Shayne 481211 024 Borrowed Heirloom.mp3
      44. Michael Shayne 481218 025 Eager Victim.mp3
      45. Michael Shayne 481230 028 Phantom Neighbor.mp3
      46. Michael Shayne 490101 027 Mailorder Murders.mp3
      47. Michael Shayne 490827 000 Hate That Killed.mp3
      48. Michael Shayne 491102 007 Model Murder.mp3
      49. Michael Shayne 530403 000 Queen Of Narcotics.mp3
      50. Michael Shayne Case Of Corresponding Corpse.mp3
      51. Murder By Experts 500417 045 Two Can Die As Cheaply As One.mp3
      52. Murder By Experts 500424 46 Conspiracy.mp3
      53. Suspense 480909 306 Big Shot.mp3
  • MP3 downloads are available instantly after purchase!



    53 recordings on 1 MP3 Collection Download for just $4.50
    total playtime 24 hours, 58 min
    Add MP3 Collection to Cart

    Click here to see disc contents


      53 shows - total playtime 24 hours 58 minutes
      1. Michael Shayne 450409 026 Haunted House.mp3
      2. Michael Shayne 450416 027 Date At Cliff House.mp3
      3. Michael Shayne 450423 028 Body In Trunk.mp3
      4. Michael Shayne 450430 029 Pirates In San Francisco Bay.mp3
      5. Michael Shayne 450507 030 Big Voice Means Big Body.mp3
      6. Michael Shayne 450514 031 Date With Wedding.mp3
      7. Michael Shayne 450521 032 Murder Trial Of Jack Holmes.mp3
      8. Michael Shayne 450528 033 Recreate Murder.mp3
      9. Michael Shayne 450604 034 Judge Stanton Murdered.mp3
      10. Michael Shayne 450611 035 Mary Noble Suspects Uncle Briggs.mp3
      11. Michael Shayne 450618 036 Investment In An Invention.mp3
      12. Michael Shayne 450625 037 Body By Piano.mp3
      13. Michael Shayne 450702 038 Malcolm Boyd Case.mp3
      14. Michael Shayne 450709 039 Gossip Writer.mp3
      15. Michael Shayne 450716 040 Tire Oriental Lines.mp3
      16. Michael Shayne 450723 041 Strange Business Call.mp3
      17. Michael Shayne 450730 042 Museum Thefts.mp3
      18. Michael Shayne 450806 043 Missing Body.mp3
      19. Michael Shayne 450820 045 Red Lead Mystery.mp3
      20. Michael Shayne 450827 046 Behind Footlights.mp3
      21. Michael Shayne 450903 047 Signed, Rem.mp3
      22. Michael Shayne 450924 050 Shadow William P Pringle.mp3
      23. Michael Shayne 461105 005 Return To Huxley.mp3
      24. Michael Shayne 461112 002 Poisoned Fan.mp3
      25. Michael Shayne 480722 005 Hunted Bride.mp3
      26. Michael Shayne 480729 006 Blood Stained Pearls.mp3
      27. Michael Shayne 480806 007 Phantom Gun.mp3
      28. Michael Shayne 480820 009 Greyeyed Blonde.mp3
      29. Michael Shayne 480904 010 Generous Killer.mp3
      30. Michael Shayne 480911 011 Model Murder.mp3
      31. Michael Shayne 480918 012 Pursuit Of Death.mp3
      32. Michael Shayne 480925 013 Crooked Wheel.mp3
      33. Michael Shayne 481002 014 Wandering Fingerprints.mp3
      34. Michael Shayne 481009 015 Purloined Corpse.mp3
      35. Michael Shayne 481016 016 Lefthanded Fan.mp3
      36. Michael Shayne 481023 017 Deadly Dough.mp3
      37. Michael Shayne 481030 018 Popular Corpse.mp3
      38. Michael Shayne 481106 019 Bayou Monster.mp3
      39. Michael Shayne 481113 020 Problem In Murder.mp3
      40. Michael Shayne 481120 021 High Priced Twins.mp3
      41. Michael Shayne 481127 022 Carnival Killer.mp3
      42. Michael Shayne 481204 023 Constant Companion.mp3
      43. Michael Shayne 481211 024 Borrowed Heirloom.mp3
      44. Michael Shayne 481218 025 Eager Victim.mp3
      45. Michael Shayne 481230 028 Phantom Neighbor.mp3
      46. Michael Shayne 490101 027 Mailorder Murders.mp3
      47. Michael Shayne 490827 000 Hate That Killed.mp3
      48. Michael Shayne 491102 007 Model Murder.mp3
      49. Michael Shayne 530403 000 Queen Of Narcotics.mp3
      50. Michael Shayne Case Of Corresponding Corpse.mp3
      51. Murder By Experts 500417 045 Two Can Die As Cheaply As One.mp3
      52. Murder By Experts 500424 46 Conspiracy.mp3
      53. Suspense 480909 306 Big Shot.mp3
  • Standard Audio CDs are delivered by mail on archival quality media with up to 60 minutes on each CD and play in all CD players



    53 recordings on 27 Audio CDs
    total playtime 24 hours, 58 min

    Brett Halliday Disc A001

    1. Michael Shayne Case Of Corresponding Corpse
    2. Michael Shayne 450409 026 Haunted House

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    Brett Halliday Disc A002

    1. Michael Shayne 450416 027 Date At Cliff House
    2. Michael Shayne 450423 028 Body In Trunk

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    Brett Halliday Disc A003

    1. Michael Shayne 450430 029 Pirates In San Francisco Bay
    2. Michael Shayne 450507 030 Big Voice Means Big Body

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    Brett Halliday Disc A004

    1. Michael Shayne 450514 031 Date With Wedding
    2. Michael Shayne 450521 032 Murder Trial Of Jack Holmes

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    Brett Halliday Disc A005

    1. Michael Shayne 450528 033 Recreate Murder
    2. Michael Shayne 450604 034 Judge Stanton Murdered

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    Brett Halliday Disc A006

    1. Michael Shayne 450611 035 Mary Noble Suspects Uncle Briggs
    2. Michael Shayne 450618 036 Investment In An Invention

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    Brett Halliday Disc A007

    1. Michael Shayne 450625 037 Body By Piano
    2. Michael Shayne 450702 038 Malcolm Boyd Case

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    Brett Halliday Disc A008

    1. Michael Shayne 450709 039 Gossip Writer
    2. Michael Shayne 450716 040 Tire Oriental Lines

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    Brett Halliday Disc A009

    1. Michael Shayne 450723 041 Strange Business Call
    2. Michael Shayne 450730 042 Museum Thefts

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    Brett Halliday Disc A010

    1. Michael Shayne 450806 043 Missing Body
    2. Michael Shayne 450820 045 Red Lead Mystery

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    Brett Halliday Disc A011

    1. Michael Shayne 450827 046 Behind Footlights
    2. Michael Shayne 450903 047 Signed, Rem

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    Brett Halliday Disc A012

    1. Michael Shayne 450924 050 Shadow William P Pringle
    2. Michael Shayne 461105 005 Return To Huxley

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    Brett Halliday Disc A013

    1. Michael Shayne 461112 002 Poisoned Fan
    2. Michael Shayne 480722 005 Hunted Bride

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    Brett Halliday Disc A014

    1. Michael Shayne 480729 006 Blood Stained Pearls
    2. Michael Shayne 480806 007 Phantom Gun

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    Brett Halliday Disc A015

    1. Michael Shayne 480820 009 Greyeyed Blonde
    2. Michael Shayne 480904 010 Generous Killer

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    Brett Halliday Disc A016

    1. Suspense 480909 306 Big Shot
    2. Michael Shayne 480911 011 Model Murder

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    Brett Halliday Disc A017

    1. Michael Shayne 480918 012 Pursuit Of Death
    2. Michael Shayne 480925 013 Crooked Wheel

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    Brett Halliday Disc A018

    1. Michael Shayne 481002 014 Wandering Fingerprints
    2. Michael Shayne 481009 015 Purloined Corpse

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    Brett Halliday Disc A019

    1. Michael Shayne 481016 016 Lefthanded Fan
    2. Michael Shayne 481023 017 Deadly Dough

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    Brett Halliday Disc A020

    1. Michael Shayne 481030 018 Popular Corpse
    2. Michael Shayne 481106 019 Bayou Monster

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    Brett Halliday Disc A021

    1. Michael Shayne 481113 020 Problem In Murder
    2. Michael Shayne 481120 021 High Priced Twins

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    Brett Halliday Disc A022

    1. Michael Shayne 481127 022 Carnival Killer
    2. Michael Shayne 481204 023 Constant Companion

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    Brett Halliday Disc A023

    1. Michael Shayne 481211 024 Borrowed Heirloom
    2. Michael Shayne 481218 025 Eager Victim

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    Brett Halliday Disc A024

    1. Michael Shayne 481230 028 Phantom Neighbor
    2. Michael Shayne 490101 027 Mailorder Murders

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Brett Halliday Disc A025

    1. Michael Shayne 490827 000 Hate That Killed
    2. Michael Shayne 491102 007 Model Murder

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Brett Halliday Disc A026

    1. Murder By Experts 500417 045 Two Can Die As Cheaply As One
    2. Murder By Experts 500424 46 Conspiracy

    Add Audio CD to Cart - $5.00
    Brett Halliday Disc A027

    1. Michael Shayne 530403 000 Queen Of Narcotics

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