First transmitted to our troops in 1942, the word soon spread that Command Performance, USA! was a great show. When someone suggested that well-known stars be requested to perform, Glenn Wheaton, creator of the idea, said, Request, hell! Command them to appear! And so, the show featureed such greats as Dinah Shore, Bob Hope, and Bing Crosby. This work provides information on all the first-run shows and, as a bonus, includes a similar listing for Mail Call and GI Journal, shows that followed the leader's style, but did not attain its popularity. For radio historians, communications students, and radio/WWII buffs.
A wealth of talent was crammed into each 30-minute show. Troops were asked to write to Los Angeles, where the show originated, with the names of the stars they wanted to hear. The requests grew to include sounds, such as traffic noises from a soldier's hometown square. The show was produced by the Radio Section of the Bureau of Public Relations under the War Department. The first program was heard on the evening of March 1, 1942. The last live show (415 performances later) was heard on December 20, 1949. This work documents these first-run performances.
About the Author
HARRY MACKENZIE is retired after 45 years as a British Telecom engineer./e His interest in dance-band music began in the 1930s, and in the 1940s, he became an ardent record collector. He is the co-compiler of Basic Musical Library: P Series, 1-1001 (with the late Larry F. Kiner, Greenwood Press, 1900) and One Night Stand Series, 1-1000 (with Lothar Polomski, Greenwood Press, 1991). Mackenzie resides in Glasgow, Scotland.
Table of Contents
Command Performance Index
Mail Call Index