Friday 20 April 2012

A to Z 1950s/60s Nostalgia: R

R Smell:
Rancid butter - In the days when we didn't own a fridge, the butter often had that machine-oil-rancid aroma. 

We thought these transistor radios were so modern!
R Memories:
Radio - In the 1950s the BBC had the monopoly of radio stations. There was no advertising, strict censorship for 'social correctness', announcers were not allowed to speak with a local accent, Queen's English was to be spoken at all times. This was the set up:

  • The Home Service: news and current affairs 
  • The Light Programme: light entertainment [with only a smidgen of pop music] 
  • The Third Programme: classical music
There was something called 'needle time' which meant that the musicians union limited the amount of records that could be played on the radio. They feared that their jobs would be at risk. It wasn't until the 1970s that the present system was introduced, including Radio 1 and wall to wall pop music.

A Dansette record player
Record Player - This was one of the few ways we could listen to our favourite songs. Every week I'd go to the record shop and ask to hear a record or three in the sound booth. Then I'd buy the latest top of the pops, take it home and play it over and over again with the arm up on the record player so that the needle kept returning to the beginning of the record.

I mainly bought singles, one song on each side played at 45 revs per minute. My sister had some Elvis songs that were the old heavy 78s. They whizzed round on the record player while LPs (long players) turned at a sedate 33 revs. If you left a record in the sun it melted. If you sat on it, it broke. If you danced too enthusiastically the needle jumped across the record and once it got scratched it clicked and crackled... but I'd rather have a record than a CD any day.

Cathy McGowan, Queen of the Mods,
presented Ready Steady Go with Keith Fordyce
R Programmes:
On TV:
Brian Rix farces
Roy Rogers... and Trigger the horse of course
Rawhide... yah!
Robin Hood
Rin Tin Tin
Ready Steady Go

On Radio:
The Al Read Show
Ray's a Laugh, with Ted Ray

R Names:
Cliff Richard as he appeared on my bedroom wall, Phwah!!

Michael Redgrave
Robert Redford
Cliff Richard
Johnny Ray
Martha Reeves and the Vandellas
Otis Reading who provides the...

R Music:
Otis Reading singing Try a Little Tenderness

What Rs have I missed?

If you enjoy nostalgia then pop over and visit Anne Mackle's blog at Is Anyone There? Her A to Z Challenge is about memories of the 1960s and 70s.