The Golden Age of Boxing on Radio and Television: A Blow-by-Blow History from 1921 to 1964

The Golden Age of Boxing on Radio and Television: A Blow-by-Blow History from 1921 to 1964

by Frederick V. Romano


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Radio and television broadcasting were as important to the growth and popularity of boxing as it was to the reshaping of our very culture. In The Golden Age of Boxing on Radio and Television, Frederick V. Romano explores the many roles that each medium played in both the development and the depiction of the sport. Principal among the topics covered are the ever-changing role of technology during the four-decade-plus period, how it impacted the manner in which the sport was presented to its public audience, the exponential growth of those audiences, and the influence radio and television had on the financial aspects of the sport, including the selective use of radio and television and the financial boom that the mediums created.
The Golden Age of Boxing on Radio and Television also assays radio and boxing during World War II, the role of organized crime, and the monopolistic practices during the television era. Romano also presents a detailed account of announcers such as Don Dunphy and Ted Husing who brought the action to the listeners and viewers, the many appearances that boxers including Jack Dempsey, Joe Louis, and Rocky Marciano made on radio and television when they were not in the ring, and the mediums’ portrayal of the sport in an array of programming from drama to comedy. This is a must-have for all serious boxing fans.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781631440748
Publisher: Carrel Books
Publication date: 07/25/2017
Pages: 432
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.60(d)

About the Author

Frederick V. Romano is a boxing historian with over thirty-five years of experience in the sport. He has served as a research consultant for HBO Boxing, produced and hosted a cable television show devoted to boxing, and acted as a certified amateur judge for matches throughout the New York area, including the prestigious Golden Gloves finals held annually in New York City. His first book, The Boxing Filmography, was published in 2004. He resides in Eastchester, New York.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

Introduction ix

Part I Radio

Radio Prologue A. The Newspaper Industry and Boxing; B. The Relationship Between "Fight Films" and Radio 3

Preface 10

Chapter 1 From Fancy to Phenomenon: The Seminal Boxing Broadcasts 13

Chapter 2 Dempsey, Tunney, and the Formation of Radio Networks 30

Chapter 3 The Post-Rickard Era and Madison Square Garden 46

Chapter 4 Louis and the War: A Mike Jacobs Radio Presentation 60

Chapter 5 Inventing an Industry: The Radio Announcers. Part 1 74

Chapter 6 Look Sharp, Feel Sharp: The Radio Announcers, Part 2 86

Chapter 7 The Fighters Take to the Microphone 96

Chapter 8 Don't Touch That Dial: Boxing and the Radio Serial 113

Chapter 9 Tales from Radio Land 124

Epilogue Radio Recordings 131

Part II Television


Chapter 10 The Era of Experimental and Amateur Television 135

Boxing Leads the Way 137

Chapter 11 Boxing and Television Forge a Golden Age 152

Chapter 12 A Second Frontier: Theater and Closed-Circuit Television 171

Chapter 13 Show Me the Money: The Live Gate vs. Television Money Conundrum 199

Chapter 14 The Rise and Fall of a Boxing Monopoly 225

Chapter 15 The Influence of Organized Crime on Televised Boxing 244

Chapter 16 The Orwellian Reality: A. Keep It Clean… Big Brother Is Watching; B. The Lighter Side of Televised Boxing 263

Chapter 17 What'll Ya Have?: The Announcers and Their Broadcasts 285

Chapter 18 Out of the Ring and onto the Small Screen 302

Chapter 19 Stay Tuned: Boxing and the Television Series 320

Epilogue Kinescope and Video Recordings from Boxing's Golden Age of Television: A Perspective 341

Endnotes 349

Index 402

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