HUD Secretary-designate Moon Landrieu - with an eye to stir things up in Washington.

HUD Secretary-designate Maurice “Moon” Landrieu – with an eye to stir things up in Washington.

The World Tonight – July 27, 1979 – CBS Radio – Gordon Skene Sound Collection

News for this day in 1979 had much to do with the Carter Cabinet shakeup, and the ongoing replacements heading to Washington. Latest and last in his choices for appointments were former New Orleans Mayor Maurice “Moon” Landrieu, slated to be Secretary of HUD and Neil Goldschmidt, mayor of Portland Oregon, slated to be Secretary of Transportation. Both were considered progressive choices, and some on Capitol Hill hailed the appointments as the best in 20 years. President Carter left for Camp David for a few days to savor the accolades.

Meanwhile, it was learned there was a surprising increase in Gasoline stocks, making things rosy for August travelers. Energy Secretary Schlesinger said the situation was improving, saying August gasoline supplies would be up to 96% of levels a year earlier and that home heating oil supplies would be sufficient for the coming Winter. He went on to say this latest turn did not mean Congress should abandon President Carter’s Energy proposals; a short-term windfall was not a solution for the long-term.

The infamous Shetleymobile was in the news – Inventor Michael Shetley, who combined a Mercury Capri, powered by a turbo-charged 4-cylinder diesel engine, claimed a whopping 120 miles to the gallon of gas as the result. The EPA did tests and no, the 120 miles a gallon was off a bit – measuring instead some 34 miles per gallon in the city and 52 miles per gallon on the highway – it was a long way from claims, but it was at least a step in the right direction. Shetley was slated to be on hand for a press conference, but left town the day before after getting a sneak-peek at the test results. Back to the drawing board.

And G. William Miller was back on Capitol Hill, continuing hearings on his confirmation as Secretary of the Treasury. Miller wanted to assure the Finance Committee that he would not permit the U.S. Dollar to sink any lower on world money markets. Acknowledging a “mild recession” was underway, Miller insisted that inflation was the real enemy and said it was not the time for increased federal spending or a general across-the-board tax cut. He also was grilled regarding allegations of millions of dollars in questionable payments in connection with overseas sales by the company Miller formerly headed; Textron Corporation. Miller reiterated that he did not know about or condone such practices. The issue was no expected to prevent Miller from getting easy approval for the Treasury job sometime in the following week.

And that’s how it went – this July 27, 1979 as reported on The World Tonight from CBS News.

That Petrol Emotion - Indie with some Charisma thrown in.

That Petrol Emotion – Indie with some Charisma thrown in.

That Petrol Emotion – Live At Reading University – October 1990 – BBC Radio 1

An oldie-but-a-goodie tonight. Set by That Petrol Emotion, recorded at Reading University in October of 1990 by the venerable BBC Radio.

That Petrol Emotion were originally from Northern Ireland, with the exception of their lead singer, Steve Mack who was an American living in London when the band relocated and recruited his services.

A mixture of a wide range of influences, That Petrol Emotion were one of the more distinctive Indie bands at the time, as well as one of the more political. They quickly established a vigorous following as well as universal acclaim from the Press, even prompting Rolling Stone to dub them a “cross between The Clash and Creedence”, the New York Times called them “A youthful Rolling Stones crossed with a revved up Television”. It helped stimulate sales and popularity – and they were riding high on that wave until things began to get a little shaky. First, a change in management at their label, Polydor prompted the band to sign with Virgin. Founding member, Guitarist John O’Neill quit and fortunes slowly changed.

By 1994 the band called it quits, at least for 12 years – before reuniting and, from the looks of it, calling it quits again.

As a reminder of That Petrol Emotion during their heady and vital days, here is a sample of the band from 1990.

If you aren’t familiar with them – time to check them out, starting with this concert. If you are familiar with them, you may have missed this one over the years.

Either way, crank it up and get ready for the week.


Henry Barraud - with us till the ripe age of 97.

Henry Barraud – with us till the ripe age of 97.

CBC Transcription Service – Henry Barraud – Sonatine for Violin and Piano – Garami, vln – Reiner, piano – Gordon Skene Sound Collection.

Over to the CBC this week for a performance of the Sonatine for Violin and Piano by the French composer Henry Barraud, composed in 1941 and broadcast via the CBC Radio Transcription Service circa 1953.

Barraud was born in 1900 in Bordeaux and spent most of his life in France and, along with fellow composers Jean Rivier and Pierre-Octave Ferroud formed the Triton Society for the furthering of French Contemporary Music throughout the world.

After the liberation of France in 1944, Barraud became Director of Music for Paris Radio and later, in 1948 when it became the ORTF. Barraud held that position until his retirement in 1965. Barraud passed away on December 28, 1997.

A large output of work, much of which has been commercially recorded over the years, and reissued, Barraud is hardly unknown, but his orchestral work has been played and recorded more frequently than his chamber music.

This radio session features Hungarian-born/Canadian emigrated violinist Arthur Garami and likewise Hungarian-born/Canadian-emigrated pianist Charles Reiner – both of whom settled in Montreal and became actively involved in the Canadian Music establishment.


Dexter Gordon - Copenhagen was his home.

Dexter GordonCopenhagen was his home.

Dexter Gordon Quartet – Live At Megleass Højskole – August 5, 1967 – Radio Denmark

Dexter Gordon in concert this week – along with Kenny Drew, Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen and Albert “Tootie” Heath, playing a gig at Meglass Højskole to an audience of enthralled College Jazz students. It was recorded by Radio Denmark on August 5, 1967 – and has since shown up on various reissues – as well as on DVD.

Gordon relocated to Copenhagen in the 60s, as many American Jazz musicians, particularly African-Americans chose to during this time. Aside from the obvious reasons, Jazz was very much accepted and appreciated in Europe – in fact, throughout the rest of the World – it was just not as huge in the U.S. at the time, as it was everywhere else.

So a Dexter Gordon appearance was not all that unusual around Copenhagen during the 1960s and 1970s. He played a lot. So this particular performance, which was recorded for Danish Radio and TV was stored away and not thought about all that much until its recent discovery. It is now part of the Dexter Gordon’s legacy and a must-hear performance for students and fans.

Relax and jump into this one – well worth the hour spent. Seriously.

The mind fairly reels, what he'd be thinking now.

The mind fairly reels, what he’d be thinking now.

NBC Radio – New World – Discussing George Bernard Shaw – July 29, 1956 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection

George Bernard Shaw – Irish Playwright, critic, activist, economist, essayist, novelist, was born on this day, July 26, 1856 in Dublin. He was co-founder of the London School of Economics, was the only person to have won a Nobel Prize and an Academy Award, is probably best known as the author of Pygmalion which became the premise for the musical My Fair Lady and was a social critic as well as vegetarian and Socialist. He died in November of 1950, leaving behind a rich legacy that has been studied, preserved and discussed ever since.

1956 was his Centenary – and media outlets were celebrating his birth all during the week of July 26. NBC Radio, as part of its New World series via the weekend service Monitor, hosted a discussion of Shaw by one of his friends and associates, Political Scientist Herman Finer.

Finer had known and worked with Shaw since 1923 and provides interesting insights into the Man and his legacy, not only as a figure notable in so many areas of the arts and politics, but also as a person. Shaw’s activism stressed equality during a time when class-consciousness was at an all-time high – he called for Britain to be one of the first western countries to recognize the Soviet Union and was a vigorous rebel against Victorian respectability at the time and that was just a small part of who he was.

These insights into the life and work of George Bernard Shaw probably mean nothing if you aren’t familiar with Shaw or his writing.

So – have a look around – click on any one of a number of websites devoted to his work and get an idea of who the man was, who often went by the initials GBS.

If you are familiar – this will give you added insights as to who Shaw was on a personal level. And it may prompt you to grab any of his books, plays or criticisms as a reminder of who we had, roaming the earth early in the last century.

In any case, here is an interview with Herman Finer on the life of George Bernard Shaw, as it was first broadcast during the centennial week in 1956 over NBC Radio.


Pixies - overlooked and underrated at the time - but time has a habit of changing things.

Pixies – overlooked and underrated at the time – but time has a habit of changing things.

Pixies – In Concert at Melkweg, Amsterdam – April 14, 1988 – VPRO/3VOOR12 – Netherlands

Vintage Pixies this weekend. Although their success was modest in the U.S. – leading many critics to call them severely overlooked and underrated, their popularity in Europe has always bordered on the phenomenal. Today, after an acrimonious break-up in 1993 and an eventual patch-up and reforming in 2004, their legacy and influence has picked up greatly over time to the point of sold-out concerts and festivals all over the world, especially recently.

This weekend though, it’s the first incarnation of Pixies – two years old and riding high on the popularity in Europe with the release of their second album, Surfer Rosa. They get a wild reception from the Dutch from this performance, recorded by Netherlands radio network VPRO on April 14, 1988.

In case you missed them the first time around – or wanted a reminder, here is that show, which you are advised to crank up loudly in order to fully enjoy.

Jus’ suggesting . . . .


July 1966 -  . . . and it was only going to get more intense.

July 1966 – . . . and it was only going to get more intense.

ABC Radio – Voices In The Headlines – Week Ending July 24, 1966 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection

The phrase “Long, Hot Summer” was destined to become a yearly occurrence by 1966. Since 1964, when Harlem in New York erupted, Summer came to mean a time of frustration, anger and insufferable heat; along with gunfire, teargas and the smell of burning buildings.

And 1966 proved to be no different. While the country was still digesting the after-effects of Watts only a year earlier, the cities of Cleveland Ohio and New York City were turned into battle zones. But by the week ending on July 24th, the violence was dying down, until the next time. And nobody knew when that next time would be.

Meanwhile, in Washington – the situation in Vietnam was now fostering grave doubts by a growing number of Senators and Congressmen on Capitol Hill. As criticisms of our Southeast Asia policy were growing, calls for China to finally be admitted to the United Nations were being heard. It was felt that, if China were part of the UN, our policy in Southeast Asia may be different. Among those disagreeing with the move for admitting Red China to the UN was none other than Secretary of State Dean Rusk, who thought admitting Red China would mean abandoning Formosa – and we had a commitment to Formosa.

And while all the talk back and forth about Southeast Asia policy was going on, the war in Vietnam continued. A major ground offensive was taking place near the border of North and South Vietnam. Operation Hastings, which involved some 8,000 U.S. Marines, battled North Vietnamese regulars, claiming some 600 North Vietnamese .

Secretary of State Dean Rusk talked about de-escalation in Vietnam and the threat North Vietnam was planning on trying captured U.S. flyers as war criminals. The hint of war-crimes trials sent a wave of shock throughout Capitol Hill, and many expressed outrage including former President Eisenhower. It was one more complicated element in a rapidly complicated and out-of-control war.

And that’s just a little of what went on this week – the week ending on Friday July 24th – as presented by ABC Radio’s Voices In The Headlines – 49 years ago.