Categories
Debut Episode Musical Old Time Radio Voice of Firestone

The Voice of Firestone brings Classical Music to the Airwaves, 1928

Sponsored by the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company, the Firestone Hour debuted December 3, 1928 on the NBC radio-broadcasting network. The program featured classical and operatic music in an old time radio shows format, in which selections were performed by the Firestone orchestra. The long running weekly radio show was broadcast at 8:30 p.m. on Monday nights for 28 years.

On November 29, 1943, the show became known as, The Voice of Firestone, which coincided with its television premier on a New York television station. The “voice” of the new televised format focused more on documentary and commentary than its radio broadcast version. Firestone supported and promoted several national organizations on its show. In 1944, the NBC television network began televising the program to a nationwide audience. This series aired until 1947.

The Voice of Firestone continued to evolve and by 1949, the NBC network once again picked up the show. This time, the televised program aired simultaneously with its radio broadcast. Unfortunately, the televised series was less successful than its radio counterpart was. Mixed reviews and low ratings resulted in NBC wanting to remove the show from its prime time line-up; however, Firestone executives refused and the show was acquired by the ABC network in 1954. Radio broadcasting continued until 1956, while the televised show aired until its cancellation by ABC in 1959. Many viewers protested against the cancellation, citing that television lacked high quality programs. The program was revived in 1962, but it was cancelled within a year.

This is one of the few remaining recordings of the musical series from 1953:

[audio:Voice-Of_Firestone-53-11-30-25th-Anniv-Program.mp3]
Categories
Musical Old Time Radio

First Commercial Broadcast “Voice of Firestone” aired on 3-22-1928

Firestone Rubber PlantToday in radio history, the first commercial broadcast The Voice of Firestone was aired. Sponsored by the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company on the NBC network. ABC aired the show on the same day and time starting 1954 after a dispute over the time slot when NBC wanted to change the time. The television and radio show were simulcast and when NBC wouldn’t back down Firestone took the show to ABC until it went off the air in 1955. Show had one of the longest runs in the history of radio being on the air for twenty-seven years.

This is one of the few remaining recordings of the musical series from 1953:

[audio:Voice-Of_Firestone-53-11-30-25th-Anniv-Program.mp3]

In this NBC network/NBC-TV net simulcast the program celebrating the completion of the program’s twenty-fifth year on the air. The first selection is, “Strike Up The Band” by George Gershwin. The first half hour was heard on radio and television, the second half hour was heard on television only.