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The Fred Waring Show (radio program)

The Fred Waring Show is an American old-time radio musical variety program. It was broadcast in a variety of time slots from February 8, 1933, until October 4, 1957, and was heard at different times on ABC, CBS, NBC, and the Blue Network.[1] The program was sometimes called Chesterfield Time or Pleasure Time.[2]

The Fred Waring Show
Other namesChesterfield Time
Pleasure Time
GenreMusical variety
Country of originUnited States
Blue Network
TV adaptationsThe Fred Waring Show
AnnouncerPaul Douglas
Produced byTom Bennett
Original releaseFebruary 8, 1933 (1933-02-08) – October 4, 1957 (1957-10-04)
Sponsored byAmerican Meat Company
Bromo Quinine
Chesterfield cigarettes
Ford Motor Company
General Electric
Johnson's Wax
Old Gold cigarettes

Musician Fred Waring starred in the shows, which featured his orchestra and chorus.[2] An article in the trade publication Broadcasting described Waring's programs on radio (and later on television) as featuring "friendly banter with his crew, plus renditions of old-time favorite songs and ballads by the chorus and vocalists."[3]

The program's producers through the years included Tom Bennett.[4] Announcers included Paul Douglas[5] and Bill Bivens.[6]

Waring's programs were usually broadcast from the Shawnee Inn in Shawnee on Delaware, Pennsylvania, a facility that he acquired and renamed, transforming the venue into the center of his musical activities.[7]



Waring's broadcasts were heard on the schedule shown in the table below.

Beginning Date Ending Date Network Day Sponsor
February 8, 1933 January 31, 1934 CBS Wednesday Old Gold cigarettes
February 4, 1934 December 29, 1936 CBS various days Ford Motor Company
January 17, 1936 December 25, 1936 Blue Friday Ford Motor Company
October 8, 1938 March 4, 1939 NBC Saturday Bromo Quinine
June 19, 1939 June 9, 1944 NBC weekdays Chesterfield cigarettes
September 7, 1944 May 31, 1945 Blue Thursday --------
June 4, 1945 July 8, 1949 NBC weekdays (daytime) American Meat Company,

Florida Citrus Growers

June 18, 1946 September 24, 1946 NBC Tuesday Johnson's Wax
June 24, 1947 September 30, 1947 NBC Tuesday Johnson's Wax
June 7, 1948 September 29, 1948 NBC Mondays and Wednesdays (daytime) Johnson's Wax
October 6,1947 September 29, 1949 NBC Mondays (1947-1948)

Thursdays (1948-1949)

General Electric
July 16, 1949 July 22, 1950 NBC Saturday Minnesota Canning Company
October 1, 1956 March 15, 1957 ABC weekdays (daytime) --------
April 9, 1957 October 4, 1957 ABC weekdays --------

Source: On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio[1]

Transcriptions for FordEdit

In 1935, Ford Motor Company used transcriptions from Waring's CBS broadcasts to promote the new 1935 Ford V8 automobile. The World Broadcasting System produced three 15-minute transcriptions for distribution to 300 radio stations vial local Ford dealers.[8]

Those transcriptions were key in establishing a musical artist's legal rights with regard to recordings of performances. In 1939, A United States District court in North Carolina granted Waring an injunction against using a transcription without his authoriazation. Waring had sued Richard Austin Dunlea, who owned radio station WMFD in Wilmington, North Carolina, after the station broadcast an excerpt from a transcription despite the station's not being designated for use of the transcription. Judge Isaac M. Meekins' ruling said, in part: "Complainant has a property right in his performance. Complainant by mental labor creates something which is the subject of sale ... It is his work, his property ..."[9]

The ruling in North Carolina followed a similar decision in Pennsylvania, in which a state court said that radio station WDAS had to have Waring's permission to broadcast recordings that he had made.[9]


  1. ^ a b Dunning, John (1998). On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio (Revised ed.). New York, NY: Oxford University Press. pp. 269–271. ISBN 978-0-19-507678-3.
  2. ^ a b Reinehr, Robert C.; Swartz, Jon D. (2010). The A to Z of Old Time Radio. Scarecrow Press. pp. 103–104. ISBN 9781461672074.
  3. ^ "Fred Waring Show" (PDF). Broadcasting. July 29, 1957. p. 20. Retrieved 28 November 2017.
  4. ^ Chase, Gilbert (1946). Music in Radio Broadcasting (PDF). New York: McGraw-Hill Book Company. p. vii. Retrieved 28 November 2017.
  5. ^ Rhoads, B. Eric (1996). A Pictorial History of Radio's First 75 Years (PDF). West Palm Beach, Florida: Streamline Publishing, Inc. p. 219. ISBN 1- 886745 -06 -4. Retrieved 28 November 2017.
  6. ^ "Behind the Mike" (PDF). Broadcasting. October 18, 1943. p. 40. Retrieved 28 November 2017.
  7. ^ Danilov, Victor J. (2013). Famous Americans: A Directory of Museums, Historic Sites, and Memorials. Scarecrow Press. p. 170. ISBN 9780810891869. Retrieved 11 November 2017.
  8. ^ "300 Get Ford Discs" (PDF). Broadcasting. January 15, 1935. p. 35. Retrieved 28 November 2017.
  9. ^ a b "Court Recognizes Recorder's Rights" (PDF). Broadcasting. March 1, 1939. p. 49. Retrieved 23 December 2017.

External linksEdit