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‘A Christmas Carol’ – Memories Of Our 1972 Radio Broadcast

Greg McShea/Matt Herkimer

You know about Ebenezer Scrooge of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol”, but did you know that yours truly and my then radio colleagues produced a local radio version of that story? The year was 1972, and I was the morning show host on WTLB Radio in Utica, and Matt Herkimer was the midday announcer (just opposite of our shifts on Big Frog 104 today).

Those were the days way before computers and digital recording, so everything was recorded on reel-to-reel tape. I recall that we all got together one Sunday night in the WTLB recording studio; each of us playing a part or parts in the show. The sound effects and music were put in as we rolled, and with outtakes and editing, it took about three hours to complete the 30 minute program.

Those two young guys above are yours truly, Greg McShea and Matt Herkimer, and we haven’t changed a bit. These vintage photos were taken by my friend, Guy Danella.

The cast consisted of the radio announcers and office staff at the radio station at the time:

Narrator: Brian Whittemore, former WTLB news director

Jacob Marley/Solicitor in Scrooge’s Shop/Peter Cratchit: Matt Herkimer

Bob Cratchit/Fezziwig: Joe Tierno, former WTLB news director, announcer, public affairs director and talk show host

Scrooge’s nephew Fred: Barry Ahrendt, WTLB news announcer

Ghost Of Christmas Past & President: Paul Dunn, WTLB general manager and co-owner

Little Fan (Scrooge’s sister)/Mrs. Cratchit: Eveyln Potempa, secretary and receptionist

Ebenezer Scrooge: Greg McShea

The program was broadcast on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1972 on WTLB Radio. And, because I never throw anything away, I saved the recording of the show, and you can listen to it here in three segments.

Segment 1

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Segment 2

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Segment 3

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Read: Christmas On Main Street Presented By Adirondack Scenic Railroad Nov. 23, 2013 At Union Station

 

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