The Chase and Sanborn Shows

by James Ollinger

One day out of idle curiosity, I was looking up the old-time radio (OTR) ratings leaders. I had always heard that Jack Benny and Bob Hope dominated the ratings, but instead I was surprised to find something called the Chase & Sanborn Hour, or some variation of that title, was the #1 show several times, never falling below #7 over an eleven-year period. So I looked up Chase & Sanborn, and the more I learned about it the more interesting I found it to be. Unfortunately, information on it is sparse and scattered. This is an attempt to gather what I can find about one of the great, forgotten radio shows of the golden era.

Chase & Sanborn and Standard Brands

Chase & Sanborn began selling coffee in the 1862, but for our purposes, the story starts in 1929 when it was acquired by the Royal Baking Power Company and merged with Fleischmann (makers of Fleishcmann's Yeast) and others to form a company called Standard Brands. This new company used the J. Walter Thompson (JWT) agency to advertise heavily on radio for the next two decades.

Radio was still very young at that point, but maturing quickly. Broadcasting—the practice of one-way transmissions for reception by a wide audience— only really began in the U.S. in late 1921. Just five years later, the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) was formed, linking various radio stations together to form a network. NBC settled on two major networks which they called the Red and the Blue. The Red Network was anchored by WEAF in New York, and generally carried the bigger, popular, sponsored shows; the Blue Network was anchored by WJZ[ 1 ] also in New York, and tended to carry lesser-rated, unsponsored, and prestige broadcasts. The Blue Network would later be sold and become the basis of the American Broadcasting Company (ABC).

Standard Brands sponsored a number of shows over the next two decades. The two most successful, undoubtedly, were the Fleischmann's Yeast Hour (later the Royal Gelatine Hour[ 2 ]), which starred Rudy Vallée, and the Chase & Sanborn Hour. While Fleischmann's and Royal each sponsored a number of shows at various time periods, Chase & Sanborn stuck with the Sunday at 8pm time throughout its run. Sunday was, as it is now on television, the highest rated evening for listenership. When the Chase & Sanborn show was running high, it paid huge dividends for the company.[ 3 ]

The Chase & Sanborn Choral Orchestra (October 1929-1931)

In 1929, most evening entertainment shows were musical; the big ones were orchestral music, sometimes classical, sometimes pop, occasionally jazz. Smaller ones featured quartets or small groups. Examples include the Atwater Kent Concert, the Enna Jettick Melodies, and the Sonatron Program (featuring Art Kahn and his Sonatrons). A few shows, like Pepsodent's Amos & Andy, were comedies, but the vast majority heavily depended on music.

Chase & Sanborn's first show fit in nicely. In a 30 minute spot they featured Phil Ohman and Victor Arden (a two-piano duo), Welcome Lewis, a contralto crooner, Mary McCoy, soprano, and a male quartet. Gustave Haenschen led the orchestra with arrangements by Frank Blank. Neel Enslen performed the announcing chores. A display ad in "What's On the Air" magazine (May 1930) shows photos of Phil Dewey, Jack Parker, Frank Luther, Gus Haenschen, Frank Luther, and one of the two [ 4 ] female soloists, Gitla Erstinn. Mary McCoy rated a cover photo and a blurb in the January 1930 issue of "Radio Index." The January 1931 issue of "What's On the Air" included a small, boxed profile of Mary Hopple.

An hour-long Major Bowes and his Capitol Family show provided the lead-in, which began at 7:30pm Eastern, sponsorship unknown. The Capitol Family show was musical variety, originating from his Capitol Theater in New York City. Bowes would show up later again with another show, Major Bowes and the Original Amateur Hour.

Chevalier and Cantor: The Chase & Sanborn Hour (1931-1934)

It's difficult to say when the Choral Orchestra changed to The Chase & Sanborn Hour. The first mention I can find is the March 1931 edition of "What's On the Air," starting now at 8pm and running an hour. The listing called it the "Chase & Sanborn Orchestra," but later mentions in articles and interviews refer to the show as the "Chase & Sanborn Hour." Radio magazines with program listings were often lax or inconsistent in naming the shows.

The same issue of "What's on the Air," however, has another mention in the "ABC Presents" column: "Maurice Chevalier, famed comedian of the French stage and motion-picture star, will continue to be featured on the Chase and Sanborn programs for twenty-six weeks." There's no mention of when he started exactly, but it is very likely that Chevalier started in February or March. According to the biography "Banjo Eyes: Eddie Cantor and the Birth of Modern Stardom," Chevalier performed in the last four 1/2-hour broadcasts and the next seventeen full-hour shows.

David Rubinoff was a Russian-born violinist and orchestra leader, and would become very associated with the Chase and Sanborn show for the next several years. A feature article on Rubinoff from the February 1936 edition of Radio Mirror quoted him: "I began the Chase and Sanborn Hour [in 1931]. It was. . . all music—an orchestra, and solos by vocalists and me. After awhile they began giving me guest stars to make the show more elaborate, but mostly it was music."

Chevalier left the show in the Fall. Most sources simply say that he went back to Paris. Radio Guide (March 31, 1932, p.13) suggested that his tenure was a failure:

It will be recalled that he refused to broadcast more than three songs in any one period on the air, although his sponsors 'extended his period on the air from a half to a full hour.

It developed that .Maurice had only about a half dozen songs in his repertoire, rather a scanty collection for a radio performer who is expected to do almost that many new ones each week. His contract was a fortunate one for him. It provided for a cancellation in the event he found it necessary to return to France. He suddenly discovered he had forgotten to lock his kitchen door in gay "Paree," right in the middle of his radio contract, took the first boat home—and wasn't missed.

With Chevalier out, Eddie Cantor came in, his first show being July 13, 1931. Things would never be the same.

Eddie Cantor was already a theatrical and singing star by the time he joined the show. He'd come up in the glory years of the Ziegfeld Follies, and followed with hits of his own on tours and the Broadway musical, Whoopie. But the stock market crash hit him very hard, as did the backing of one of Ziegfeld's musical productions which flopped. Talking pictures were just starting up but Cantor's Hollywood career was chequered and tepid. A weekly radio gig on a high-profile show was the next big thing to Broadway—except that it also gained him a national audience.

Jimmy Wallington was the announcer, and the three of them—Cantor, Wallington and Rubinoff—would become a celebrity team of sorts, something like the Johnny Carson / Ed McMahon / Doc Severenson combination on the Tonight Show later on. Wallington became Cantor's straight man, who fed Cantor setup lines for gags. Cantor disparaged Rubinoff's violin prowess, among many other things, but Rubinoff never answered back. In a cover story from Radio Guide (May 13, 1932 p.2) called That Guy Cantor, Rubinoff claimed that he couldn't hear Cantor while he was talking into the microphone. More likely, Rubinoff did not want to be radio character, just a respected musician.[ 5 ]

It's difficult to describe or judge the Cantor show directly because very little of it survives except in fragments. Most of Cantor's radio record and modern criticism comes from his later shows with more plentiful recordings. So much of what we know about Cantor's C&S Hour comes from articles in the magazines of the day, which were typically publicity pieces heavily fed and influenced by JWT, or by stories about Cantor in general that are probably applicable to any of his major radio programs, regardless of time.

We know that Cantor was a singer and a comedian, so he could (and would) tell jokes and banter with his guests, as well as performing popular songs himself. He was immensely popular—the C&S Hour was the #2 show in the nation in its first year with Cantor—only bested by the "Amos 'n Andy" juggernaut. The next two seasons he beat everyone, including Amos 'n Andy, Ed Wynn, and Rudy Vallée.

But he was also polarizing. His detractors thought that some of his personal appeals on behalf of charities or causes had a layer of schmalz they did not care for. Cantor was known (probably not at the time) to edit scripts after rehearsals, taking away laugh-lines from guests or supporting actors and giving them to himself instead, without regard to whether the laugh fit the situation or not. He could be kind to some, and rude and arrogant to others. He played to the audience in the house rather than the radio audience—ignoring the fact that sight gags did not carry over the airwaves.

On one show, Cantor made a joke at the expense of Dave Rubinoff: "Rubinoff always closes his eyes when plays his violin because she's so tender-hearted he can't bear watching people suffer." (Radio Mirror, Feb 1936). The joke got a laugh so Cantor started zinging Rubinoff more often. The audience was split on whether they liked it or not. Rubinoff put up with it, but there are hints in the Mirror article, and elsewhere, that he did not appreciate it. Rubinoff did not want to get into a scripted feud with the show's host, even assuming that Cantor would have allowed it. The result was a one-sided series of jabs that looked witty to some and like bullying to others.

Regardless, the C&S Show was #1 and everyone was riding high. One issue of Radio Mirror (tbd) found out that Rubinoff's salary was $5,000 a week, up from $50 a week just a few years before. And Rubinoff was a second banana.

Cantor still had a career outside the radio, and he took generous vacations to make personal appearance tours and migrate to Hollywood to make a film over the spring and summer. Guest hosts George Jessel, Harry Richman, Jimmy Durante, among others, filled in.

The C&S show was one of the first, if not the first, radio show to incorporate the sound of a live audience. Ed Wynn is often credited with being the first to have a live audience in the studio, but the audience and performers were still separated by soundproof glass so that the audience couldn't be heard on micrphone. The prevailing wisdom at the time was that the home audience would be put off by hearing it. Cantor thought laughter was contagious, and that the home audience would more likely laugh if they heard the studio audience laughing.

It appears that Cantor was signed on a seasonal basis. Each Fall, typically in October or November he would perform until the Spring, when he would depart with much fanfare to Hollywood to film a movie and make personal appearances. His replacements, most famously George Jessel, Harry Richman, and Jimmy Durante, were either heralded or reviled by both fans and critics depending on how they felt about Cantor. In the Summer speculation began on whether Cantor would return, and whom his replacement might be.

The Cantor era lasted only three seasons. His last show as November 25, 1934, but would return with a new show and a new sponsor, first Pebeco tooth paste, and later Texaco, which had dropped Ed Wynn. Not only did he leave the C&S show—he left the network. Cantor would broadcast on Sunday nights at 8pm (later 7pm)—on CBS. [ 6 ]

Interim: The Opera Guild, Major Bowes and the Original Amateur Hour, Good Will Court, and Do You Want to Be an Actor (1935-1937)

Chase & Sanborn scrapped the comedy-variety format and tried something different—The Opera Guild, a one-hour show featuring selections from opera and hosted by Deems Taylor. After years of "low comedy" with Eddie Cantor, it may have been an overreaction to offer something more high-brow; but it was the sort of show better suited to NBC's Blue Network, and not at the Sunday at 8pm showcase time period. This lasted 13 weeks, when Major Bowes stepped in with his amateurs.

Major Edward Bowes had been on the radio since the 1920s, broadcasting out of his Capitol Theater with his musical show, Major Bowes and His Capitol Family. By 1935, the Capitol Family was now running at 11:30am on Sundays, and Bowes had a new prime-time show. Bowes "auditioned" amateurs on this show (though the real auditions occurred off the air). Winners would be signed onto Major Bowes vaudeville tours; losers were gonged—a gimmick that would later be used by Chuck Barris on the infamous "The Gong Show" in the 1970s. The Amateur Hour was a big hit, knocking Eddie Cantor out of first place on Sunday nights and putting C&S back in the #1 overall spot. And then deja vu: in the fall of 1936, Major Bowes changed sponsors and networks, leaving both Chase & Sanborn and NBC for Chrysler Motors and CBS.

Radio Mirror (October 1936) reported that "Chase & Sanborn were framing a variety bill to fill the 8 o'clock spot vacated by Major Bowes." That may have been the long term plan, but in the meantime they went with Good Will Court.

The dream of A.L. Alexander, Good Will Court found real-life people (not actors) who needed legal advice or counselling in terms that were plain and simple to understand. The people were typically too poor, and often too poorly educated, to get it any other way. In a feature article from the December 1936 issue of Radio Mirror, a typical show offered a woman seeking help from an extortionist or blackmailer (the article doesn't quote enough of her to clarify), a young man who wants a divorce in a state where the divorce laws are strict and difficult, and a young woman who claimed to be in a sham marriage and wanted to put her child up for adoption.

Though Good Will Court originated in a small boy's mind and started on a small scale on sustaining [unsponsored] programs, it is now hailed by radio critics and welfare societies as the most important development in radio for the past sixteen years.

The show lasted 13 weeks before the New York Supreme Court put an end to it. According to Broadcasting Magazine, Jan 1, 1937: Good Will Court was discontinued December 18 . . . when the First and Second Departments of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court adopted an ammendment to its rules regulating the conduct of lawyers, prohibiting them from giving advice or opinions through any publicity medium on specific legal problems posed by inquirers."

Do You Want To Be an Actor, a local Los Angeles show with Haven MacQuarrie, replaced it. According to Radio Guide, March 27, 1937, this was a variation of the Major Bowes show. Amateurs would audition on the air, and the winner would get a studio screen test. Whether that actually lead to a career as a film actor was beyond the scope of the program.

Someone at JWT, perhaps prompted by the sponsor, decided that 1937 needed to be a turning point. Chase & Sanborn coffee was being beaten by rival Maxwell House, and one way to fight it was through their radio show. It is possible that if Do You Want to Be an Actor had been a sensation, that they would have stuck with it. More likely they saw it as a stop-gap while they put together version two of the big variety show.

Amechi, Fields, Bergen & McCarthy: The Chase & Sanborn Hour - second edition (1937 - 1939)

The Makers of Chase & Sanborn Coffee, a superb blend of the world's choice coffees, and very reasonable in price, present . . . Dorothy Lamour, W. C. Fields, Edgar Bergen & Charlie McCarthy, Werner Janssen, and Don Ameche! This is The Chase & Sanborn Hour!

—typical early show introduction

The March 1937 edition of Radio Mirror reported speculation that Do You Want to Be an Actor would be a summer replacement series, and the new fall show would feature film star Dick Powell. It was a reasonable idea, since Powell was still in his song-and-dance-man period before he made the change to film-noir tough guy. But it didn't happen. In May, Radio Mirror reported that the new show would star Nelson Eddy and premier in the fall. Eddy was a singing star, most famous for his movies with Jeanette MacDonald; on the radio had been the star of Vick's Open House, which ran on CBS during the same 8pm Sunday Night time slot. There was no comment about why he was leaving Open House.

But instead of Eddy, JWT signed Don Ameche to be the host of the new show. Ameche was a rising movie star at 20th Century Fox, and also one of the house players on an NBC show called The First Nighter. That show was a 30 minute anthology drama perfomed by the same principle cast every week, namely Don Ameche and June Meredith. Ameche quit the show pleading burnout and not having a vacation in six years.

Signing Ameche signalled a big change for the new program. Cantor's show had originated from New York. This would be the first C&S Hour to originate from Hollywood. That would change the nature of the show and the guests they would likely book: New York was a theater town; Hollywood was film.

With the host role filled, JWT began assembling a company of talent around him. Ventriloquist Edgar Bergen and his dummy Charlie McCarthy had been a huge hit as guests on Rudy Vallée's Royal Gelatine Hour. Dorothy Lamour was an up-and-coming young band singer and radio veteran when she became a regular here, at age 21. Lamour was also a contract player at Paramount; she was dark and willowy and Hollywood's idea of passing for polynesian/indonesian, and she looked good in a sarong, so she was quickly typecast as an island girl in every film that called for one. One of those movies, The Road to Singapore, would make her the 3rd partner in the highly successful Road Picture series with Bing Crosby and Bob Hope. Werner Janssen lead the orchestra, because every almost every radio show had an orchestra. Janssen was an odd choice for The Red Network, since his credentials are solidly classical and more fitted to somethng on NBC Blue. He would leave the show in July and be replaced by Robert Armbruster.

Radio Mirror continued to report that Eddy was going to join the show. He'd originally wanted the host job, but with Ameche in he'd have to settle for being the male soloist. With Dorothy Lamour in, he'd have to split musical chores with her. Eddy joined the show as a regular on August 8th..

JWT shocked everyone again, though, by bringing in W.C. Fields, apparently out of nowhere. Fields was in the midst of a lot of turmoil in his life. A string of largely successful movies had run him down; an accumulation of mental stress, aggravated back injuries, chronic lung problems, too much booze, a poor diet, and medical maltreatment put him into an oxygen tent in a hospital in Riverside, Calfornia, and set his friends, family and the Press on a death watch. Fields pulled through and recovered in a sanitarium in Pasadena. He came out feeling far better and ready for some work. 1936 was largely a lost year for him. JWT signed Fields to be the featured comedian, the veteran heavyweight among a cast of performers who were still early in their careers.

The show was divided into four 15 minute "acts," separted at the half by a station break, and at the quarters by a 1 minute in-studio commercial for C&S coffee, read by an announcer (not the host).

A typical early show ran something like this (subject to considerable variation):

Act I: A comedy bit between Amechi and Bergen & McCarthy; a song or medley by the orchestra, and a song by Dorothy Lamour.

Act II: Introduction of this week's primary guest, usually an actor or actress. Ameche and the actor would typically perform some kind of playlet or scenes from the guest's movies, either a crowd favorite or an upcoming release. Playlets could be either comedic or dramatic, depending on the guest.

Act III: The guest returns in a comedy bit with Bergen & McCarthy. Then Fields, who would begin by talking to Ameche, and then the guest would be brought in, and sometimes (but not always), Bergen & McCarthy.

Act IV: The musical guest, Hoagy Carmichael or Richard Rodgers & Lorenz Hart, for example, would sing or perform with the orchestra, sometimes with Dorothy. That carried through to the end of the program.

The show was a smash right out of the gate. It did not hurt that it premiered in the summer when most of the competition was summer replacement shows; but the legendary W.C. Fields vs. Charlie McCarthy feud started almost immediately. (insert dialog here TBD)

Fields only appeared at a regular on the first seventeen shows. Feeling fit again, Paramount assigned him to work on The Big Broadcast of 1938" As Fields heavily wrote or rewrote much of his material for both radio and films, he found it too exhausting to work in both media simultaenously. According to the biography TBD, he didn't work well with the show's writers, either. Fields would return as a guest star in future episodes.

The TBD 1938 issue of Radio Mirror offered a timeline of how the show was put together. The writers would work during the week preparing the initial script; Bergen working with the writers for his and McCarthy's spots. Don Ameche would get his copy on Friday and look over the playet he would be doing with the guest. Saturday was a rehearsal day, and the show would be timed and the script adjusted. Sunday afternoon had another rehearsal, with final adjustments; and then the broadcast in the evening. There's no mention of dual broadcasts; due to the time difference between the coasts, it was common practice for the top shows to broadcast once for the East Coast and again for the West. As the C&S Hour originated from NBC Studios on Melrose in Los Angeles (Studio A in particular), they would have had to broadcast at 5 PM Pacific for the 8 PM Eastern time broadcast, and again at 8 PM for the West Coast. Recording shows for later broadcast would not happen until Bing Crosby introduced it after World War II.

The regular cast lineup changed over time as the producers kept tinkering with the show. As mentioned earlier, initial band-leader Werner Janssen was replaced by Robert Armbruster; Nelson Eddy became the regular male vocalist, W. C. Fields dropped out in August due to overwork and prior commitments to his film career; he would be replaced by deadpan comedians Clarence and Claude: the Stroud Twins. The Canovas (Judy, Annie, and Zeke) brought their hillbilly-humor act in as a temporary replacement while the Strouds made a personal appearance tour.

For the next eleven years, the Chase & Sanborn Show, in both long and short formats, had an incredible ratings run. It was the #1 show for the first three seasons, and tied for first with Fibber McGee in 1942. Its worst ranking was seventh, in 1944-45, and that was the only year it dropped below #4. It was beaten by the legendary Jack Benny only once, in 1940-41. [ 7 ]

Crossley CAB Ratings:
1937-38 C&S #1, Jack Benny #2, Burns & Allen #3
1938-39 C&S #1, Benny #2, Bing Crosby #4
1939-40 C&S #1, Benny #2, Fibber McGee & Molly #3
1940-41 Benny #1, C&S #2, Bob Hope #3, Fibber McGee #4
1941-42 C&S #1, Fibber McGee #2, Hope #4, Benny #5
1942-43 Hope #1, Red Skelton #2, Fibber McGee #3, C&S #4, Benny #5
1943-44 Fibber McGee #1, Hope #2, Skelton #3, C&S #4, Benny #5
1944-45 Hope #1, Fibber McGee #2, Bing Crosby #3, C&S #7 (tied with Benny)
1945-46 Fibber McGee #1, Hope #2, Lux Radio Theater #3, C&S #4
1946-47 Fibber McGee and Hope #1 (tie), C&S #4, Benny #4, Skelton #5
1947-48 Fred Allen #1, Fibber McGee #2, C&S #4, Benny #4

Bergen & McCarthy: The Chase & Sanborn Show (1940 - 1948)

Beginning in January 1940, the Chase & Sanborn Hour was cut back to 30 minutes (the evening soap-opera One Man's Family, also sponsored by C&S's corporate parent Standard Brands, took over the 8:30PM slot) and the big variety show format scaled back accordingly. Host Don Ameche, lead singers Dorothy Lamour and Nelson Eddy, the Stroud Twins and the Canovas all left the show. Movie and Radio Guide (January 5, 1940) reported that the issue was the enormous expense for Standard Brands's big shows was $4M annually. That's a lot of coffee, tea, yeast and gelatine. It may not have helped that Jack Benny's extremely successful Jello show, which was Royal's direct competitor, was a half-hour show as well.

Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy, however, were now the headliners and the foundation for the new show. Robert Armbruster also remained, leading a smaller orchestra, and singer Donald Dickson, who had replaced Nelson Eddy during one of this scheduled absences from the Hour, got a full-time gig.

Based on the ratings, it was a shrewd move. Bergen and McCarthy continued to ride high in the ratings through the rest of the decade.

End of Radio Sponsorship (1948)

In the late 1940s, Standard Brands began pulling out of network radio advertising; the official reason why has yet to be determined. At the time C&S still had two top shows, Bergen & McCarthy and Fred Allen[ 8 ] . They had also pulled out of a pioneering 1946 television show, Hour Glass.

Why pull out? Possibly the same problem that plagued the C&S Hour in 1939—the high cost of production. Game shows like Stop the Music found a vogue in the years after World War II; not being star-driven, they were much cheaper to produce.

It's also possible that they may have felt their advertising dollars weren't effective. Billboard magazine (March 8, 1947) ran an interesting article on ratings vs. actual commercial impact:

. . . a large audience, as projected by the Hooper ratings, does not necessarily mean that a large portion of that audience knows who's paying the bill, or what product is being sold. It's true that the first 10 nighttime shows, from the impact viewpoint, are also Hooper toppers, but the exceptions are illuminating.

For example, Fred Allen ([Tenderleaf Tea]), with a strong Hooper of 25.8 and seventh in the latest (February 15) report, rates a poor 23rd in the impact department. His impact rating is 7.9, much less than programs with far lower ratings and much smaller audiences. Virtually the same holds true of George Burns and Gracie Allen (General Foods—Maxwell House Coffee), with a Hooper of 19 and an impact figure of 8.8.

Billboard magazine (July 23, 1949) later reported that Chase & Sanborn was switching advertising agencies from JWT to Compton's. This was after ending their major radio sponsorships, may have been the next logical step. It suggests that Standard Brands was dissatisfied with JWT in some form or another, and decided to fundamentally change their advertising strategy.

Regardless of the reason, it ended a twenty-year era that coincides with the golden age of radio, and Chase & Sanborn's sponsorhip was a large contributor to it.


1 - NBC Red's WEAF is currently WFAN-AM. NBC Blue's WJZ is now WABC. [return to article]

2 - It was spelled Gelatine at the time. Modern spelling drops the final e. [return to article]

3 - The Sunday night at 8 show always featured the coffee product. At times Chase & Sanborn sponsored a show on behalf of its tea. There was the "Chase & Sanborn Tea Hour" starring Fanny Brice, a 30 minute show that aired in 1933 on Wednesday nights at 8 on NBC Red; that was later dropped in favor of the serial One Man's Family. Another was originally called the Chase & Sanborn Tea program, later, the Tenderleaf Tea Show: these were early evening, 15 minute shows hosted by, at times, Georgie Price, Bert Lahr and Jimmy Durante, among others. The tea show is sometimes confused with the coffee show, but they were separate and distinct. (Tenderleaf Tea also sponsored the serial One Man's Family" and The Fred Allen Show, but did not incorporate its name into the title of those programs). [return to article]

4 - It appears that there were two female soloists on the show, but I've come up with three names. It's not clear whether one left and was replaced, or there was some kind of rotation. [return to article]

5 - If Rubinoff really hated Cantor, he likely would not have followed him onto Cantor's new Pebeco Toothpaste show. [return to article]

6 - There is no official reason why Chase & Sanborn let him get away, but Radio Digest (May 12, 1934) reported Cantor's fee was $10,000 per show—just for Cantor. Arthur J. Kellar, in Radioland magazine (June 1935), reported that his replacement, The Opera Guild cost $6,500 to produce the entire show. The Guild's replacement, Major Bowes's Original Amateur Hour cost even less, at $3,500 a week. [return to article]

7 - Benny had the 7PM time-slot, from which the Chase & Sanborn Hour benefitted greatly. [return to article]

8 - Chase & Sanborn sponsored Bergen & McCarthy, Tenderleaf Tea sponsored Fred Allen. Both shows landed on their feet. Coca-Cola took Bergen and Ford Motor Company got Allen. [return to article]


Billboard magazine -
The Edgar Bergan and Charlie McCarthy Show: An Episode Guide and Brief History -
Radio Digest -
Radio Guide magazine -
Radio Index (aka RadEx) magazine (1925 - 1942) -
Radio Mirror magazine -
Radio Stars magazine -
Radioland magazine -
Tower Radio magazine -
What's On the Air magazine -