The KRAB Archive
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It was 1963. There was no smart-cellphone, FaceBook, Foursquare, Twitter, or Borg. There were writers of science fiction, many of whom postulated a future of technological wonders, but had serious doubts about how those wonders would benefit society and "civilization". Ray Bradbury nailed it with this one.
Rory Funke was an engineer/announcer at KRAB in the mid-to-late-1960's. Found first in the December 1963 guide. He recorded readings, interviews, music programs, and the occasional montage. He also played rock and roll when KRAB didn't, and got in trouble for it. And later, in Aug 1967, he substituted for Tom Robbins on Notes From The Underground.
Later yet it appears Rory got into library management: In 1977, as Head of the Microforms and Recordings Department at the University of Oregon Library, he took over a project of microfilming Oregon newspapers. Rory retired from the U of O in 1997, and passed away in 2007.
Recording courtesy of the Jack Straw Foundation, JSF inv L0232
8:00 The Miller's Tale, from Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, read in Middle English by Robert Payne of the University of Washington.
8:40 Lester Trimble: Four Fragments from the Canterbury Tales, performed by Adele Addison, soprano; Robert Conant, harpsichord, Charles Russo, clarinet, and Martin Orenstein, flute.
This is a typical example of KRAB program scheduling that often presented material that complemented each other. It is also an example of a program in a language that might be intelligible to only a few in the listening audience.
To our distress, though the tape label gives the program length as 40 minutes, our digitized copy is only 34 minutes. The Introduction, and a short bit of The Tale itself, it seems, has been misplaced, as the program begins at line 98 with
"And he himself as sweete as is the roote
Of licoris or any setewale."
For any concerned about missing the juicy parts, attached is the text of lines 1 through 102.
Former English Professor Robert Oscar Payne taught at the UW from 1962 to 1972. Payne was a graduate of the Univ of Oregon and Johns Hopkins. He left the UW to take a position at the City Univ of New York. He was the author of "The Key of Remembrance, a Study of Chaucer's Poetics" (1963). He died Feb 9, 1994.
Recording courtesy Jack Straw Foundation, JSF L0236
December 2005: The Silent Towns. A reading by Rory Funke from Ray Bradbury's 'Martian Chronicles' (KRAB Archives).
When this was scheduled in the Oct 1964 program guide it was already identified as a "KRAB Archives" tape, so it must have been produced and first aired sometime before that date. Unfortunately our collection of guides is incomplete, with lots missing from 1963 through 1964.
Recording courtesy of the Jack Straw Foundation, JSF inv L0231
The image above comes from a clipping saved by the person that recorded this program off the air. It is excerpted from the 1964 marathon program guide. We do not know the exact date of the broadcast, or the original broadcast date, because the sources of such documentation, guides from 1963 and 1964, are missing. But this clipping tells us it that on this occasion it was broadcast sometime between Nov 16 and 22, 1964.
Seven years later it was broadcast during the Oct 1971 marathon, and described as follows: "LAST LETTERS FROM STALINGRAD - Robert and Etsu Garfias read letters from German soldiers trapped in Stalingrad during the Second World War. The letters were read by the German officers to ascertain troop morale. Because of the nature of the letters, the High Command ordered them impounded. Further information is given at the start of the program. This is, undoubtedly, one of the most moving programs KRAB has ever presented."
The letters were published in the Autumn 1961 issue of The Hudson Review, and the program begins with Robert Garfias reading the introduction, the first part of which is missing from the tape, but follows here:
"Last Letters From Stalingrad, translated by Franz Schneider and Charles Gullans. The letters and fragments of letters that follow were originally published in Germany in 1954 by the C. Bertelsmann Verlag (now Sigbert Mohn Verlag), Guetersloh, under the title Letzte Briefe aus Stalingrad. The following note appeared as a postscript to the German edition:
"A full account of the fate of these letters would make a fantastic tale of overorganization - of a military and party bureaucracy gone mad with censorship, snooping and analytical and documentary zeal. From the day they were flown out of the Stalingrad trap, the letters passed through serried ranks of bureaus. They were to be used to 'ascertain the morale of the troops'; an order was issued from Hitler's headquarters that they were to be impounded. The order went to the Army High Command and from there to the central censorship bureau of the army postal system."
Note: There appears to be some concern today that these letters were forgeries and not authentic, but there is little that I can find in the way of evidence one way or the other. Nor is there anything indicating that the translators had any idea of questions of authenticity.
Recording courtesy of Linda and Leonard Good, LG0003
"THE DIARY OF A MADMAN." The Gogol work read at the Berkeley Reader's Theatre by Mark S. Klyn.
A radio adaptation of Diary of a Madman, produced by Erik Bauersfeld as part of the Black Mass series is also in the KRAB Archive. It can be found on the Radio Theatre page.
Recording courtesy of the Jack Straw Foundation, JSF inv L0241 and L0242
RESISTENTIALISM describes a phenomenon of unprecedented importance in 20th Century man's search for meaning and identity in an age of anxiety and.....
Paul Jennings' report from Paris on the important new philosophical movement, and its awesome consequences for Art As We Know It. Rendered by Jack Nessel. Originally published in the Spectator, April 1948, and produced at KPFA, March 3, 1961.
KRAB regularly acquired programs from KPFA and eventually from Pacifica through the Pacifica Tape Exchange. This one was a favorite that was always pulled out and replayed during marathons in the early years.
Many other Pacifica programs broadcast by KRAB in Seattle can be found on John Whiting's web site, which, incidentally, was a source of inspiration for this site. There you will find highlights from the fantasy and horror drama series produced by Erik Bauersfeld, Black Mass; the surreal comic dramas attributed to Compendium Cliché Productions; Lenny Bruce; Henry Jacobs; Dale Minor's documentation of 1963 Birmingham, Freedom Now!; and much more if you just wander the site.
Recording collection of C Reinsch
The KPFK folio of Jun 13, 1966 described it like this: This writer who has been known to literati the world over for 40 years, first came to prominent attention with the publication last year of "Henry Miller's Letters to Anais Nin." Now Harcourt-Brace in cooperation with Alan Swallow has published the first in a series of volumes derived from the several thousand pages of her Diary. On this hour she gives dramatic readings from the first volume to be published in May, talks freely about Miller, Durrell, Artaud, and other literati she knew intimately and gives her unique views on the art of writing. Francis Roberts is producer-moderator of the hour.
The KPFA folio added this for their Oct 4, 1966 rebroadcast: KPFK produced this program featuring Miss Nin and Shakespearian actor Rupert Pole.
Recording courtesy of the Internet Archive and the Pacifica Radio Archives, who wish you to know that "The preservation of these tapes was funded in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and by listeners of Pacifica Radio in 2010. Preservation services provided by George Blood Audio and Video."
NOTES FROM THE UNDERGROUND: We finally get around to registering the fact that Rory Funke is replacing T. Robbins for the month of August. Hi Rory! [guide 120, Aug 27, 1967]
Dazzling Tom Robbins returns from Humptulips, Nabraska, to continue his weekly show. [guide 122, Sep 17, 1967]
Tom Robbins has taken a couple of weeks off. The music is typical of the summer of love. Of interest is Rory's choice in reading: The Jul and Aug editions of the Evergreen Review have excerpted from a soon to be released autobiography of San Francisco Hells Angel Freewheelin' Frank Reynolds co-written by Michael McClure. In 1965 Hunter Thompson published an article and, later, a book about the culture of the Angels; in 1967 the era of outlaw biker gang films was just starting with Corman's Wild Angels, contributing to the strange enthrallment of bourgeois celebrities with the Angels; and it wasn't until Altamont in Dec 1969 that people's perceptions cleared.
We only have audio of the last half of Rory's reading, but we have posted (right) a copy of the Evergreen article so the first part can be read, though not recommended for those with queasy stomachs. The missing audio spans the title page (64) to the end of the second paragraph on page 66. Rory's reading starts off with "Meanwhile the second day grew into the hot sun".
Also heard on this clip is Rory reading a short article from the Aug 16, 1967 Helix, attached to the Evergreen PDF above. Earlier in the year the Helix had run a couple of stories about the effects of banana peels.
Recording courtesy Linda and Leonard Good, LG0001
Robert Sund was a poet living in La Conner before it became a tourist destination. He played the autoharp, drank beer, and was the KRAB poet laureate for years. One marathon I requested he recite Yeats’ Pilgrim. He demurred and offered up Roethke’s Saginaw Song instead. Wish I had a recording of that. He died in 2001.
A poem by Robert Sund from “Bunch Grass”:
At quitting time
a combine clatters unseen behind a hill,
then emerges over the crest,
flowering orange against the sky.
The driver shuts off his engine.
Sweat and dust burn
in his swollen, red-rimmed eyes.
When he climbs off the seat and jumps down,
the field sways beneath him.
He is buried by silence,
lost in it.
Coming down the hill
to where he parked his car in the morning,
he is slowly becoming someone else,
entering another country.
Where he walks,
puffs of dust behind him
in the slanted sunlight.
Recording courtesy Bob West
Although Lorenzo “retired” from his managerial role, he continued to volunteer at KRAB. He would read from a book or article, and play whatever music seemed to fit. This recording starts with the reading in progress of Claude Brown's "Manchild in the Promised Land". After a musical interlude, Lorenzo then reads from Ed Donahoe's column "Tilting the Windmill" in the Nov 29, 1968 Washington Teamster.
If I can get the money together, Gene Johnston did a six hour interview of Ed Donahoe in 1972, and it needs to be digitized.
Recording courtesy Bob West
Nov 18, 1964 - James of the Brow tests the waters by presenting a sampling of Walter Carruthers Stellar's and Robert Julian Yates's 1066 And All That tome of that same name. With appropriate music.
1. Use, correctly, the preterite conjugate of time in a letter to your grandmother
May 6, 1965 - James the Furrowed begins a serialized weekly rendering of the aforementioned volume, which persists until May 5, 1965, when History comes to a .
2. Describe, culinarily, the benefits of rendering
Dec 16, 1967 - Sir James Brow the Repetitive is pulled off the shelf for an abbreviated return engagement.
3. And why would this be?
Feb 8, 15, and 21 of 1974 - To thunderous acclaim Parts I, II, and III of the James Brow Story are served hash-wise upon the besmitten public. Listeners are requested to submit their test papers to Professor Piffleton at KRAB.
4. Given opportunity, who would thou smite? What opportunity would suffice?
Jun 23 and 24, 1980 - Parts I and II are served up a final time. Alas, Part III is lost.
5. And now all is lost. Where?
And yet another recording of a portion of the Stellar and Yates history has been found. Here is Gregory "the Frond" Palmer attempting to fill a vacant half hour with twenty minutes of a book he found laying, still sticky with beer, in the doughnut shop studio. We calculate that the date of this broadcast was May 1, 1969, a Thursday when Sunday was normally scheduled, unless you were listening tomorrow morning, in which case this will be heard Friday. The 45 minute Sunday show to which Greg refers appears to be scheduled for Sunday May 4, 1969, although it doesn't say "Sunday" in the program guide. Oh, just listen for yourself.
Recording courtesy Will Estill
Readings from the anarchist tradition by Jon Gallant, beginning with "Anarchism" by George Woodcock (Meridian Books, 1962), to be followed in future programs by Proudhon, Kropotkin, and others, generally considered to be classical anarchist writers leading up to those of more recent vintage, like Colin Ward and Paul Goodman. A bi-weekly, continuing series.
It seems these days anarchists are most known by their fashion choices. But here, in this seventeen part series (less one), Professor Jonathan Gallant, scientist, philosopher, historian, satirist, and comic wit, reads from the literature of anarchism, and shares the foundations and blasphemies of anti-government.
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Feb 6, 1971 episode 1 (missing)
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Mar 6, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Mar 20, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Apr 3, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Apr 17, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB May 1, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB May 15, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB May 29, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Jun 12, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Jun 26, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Jul 10, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Jul 24, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Aug 7, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Aug 21, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Sep 4, 1971
Anarchy Is Order: Government Is Civil War - KRAB Sep 18, 1971
Recordings courtesy Jack Straw Foundation, PA0832
In July of 1973 the Senate committee investigating Watergate learned of a White House tape recording system. A week later the Senate and Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox issued a subpoena for the tapes. Nixon refused to comply and instead offered compromises and partial compliance. Almost a year later, on April 29, 1974 the White House released 1,300 pages in 26 volumes purported to be transcripts of the tapes. They had been severely redacted supposedly to remove material either pertaining to national security or unrelated to the Watergate investigation. They also had numerous omissions where conversations are identified as "unintelligible".
A very different National Public Radio (yes, NPR) moved quickly to organize a national broadcast made up of people at affiliate stations around the country reading the transcripts. The NPR hosts anchoring the broadcast included Bob Zelnick and Robert Conley. It seems to have been produced by Barney Quinn. Does anyone know any more about the broadcast?
The clipping above was in the Friday May 4, 1974 Seattle Times. In a follow up story published on Wed May 8, KRAB Station Manager Hal Lee is quoted "We kept no logs, but calls seemed to run two to one in favor of the coverage. That might have changed if we hadn't been able to present our most popular Saturday program of bluegrass music at 9 p. m.".
One listener sent in a $2 check with "Let's hear it for Watergate" scrawled across the bottom.
Now, of course, you can go to a number of web sites and hear the actual tapes, minus 18.5 minutes, but in 1974 KRAB's news department, Jeff Michka, thought he was in heaven.
Note: Pacifica also produced a series of readings of the transcripts, which the PRA catalogs under this title: Impeachment Alert Special Edition: Conversations With the President
Recording from the collection of Dennis Flannigan, DF1006 cassette
To judge by the program guides, it seems Peggy read from the Grimm Fairy Tales from July to Dec 1976.
Recording courtesy Jack Straw Foundation, L0244
Recording courtesy Jack Straw Foundation, L0246
As more children are conceived in the Fall months than during any other season, volunteer Libby Sinclair thought that November would be a good time to begin airing highlights from the Childbirth Education Association's International Conference, which was held in Seattle last June. The programs are scattered throughout this guide, and more will be broadcast in coming months. Some of them are available in printed transcripts, and others on cassette. For more information write the station.
The note above is from the Nov 1976 program guide. Libby Sinclair produced a variety of programs in the mid-1970's with subjects ranging from children's shows ("Sunnyside up"), to labor unions, to the labor of childbirth. In the 1980's she was on the Board of Directors, and was part of a team that kept the station running when the money had dribbled away. Also during the mid-70's, on her program "Jawbreaker" Peggy DeLeers read from Foxfire, Grimm, Kipling, Hans Christian Anderson, Yeats, CS Lewis, and who knows what other mysteries of fairyland. Occasionally she was joined, or replaced, by her daughters and their friends, the Krabettes. Recent information about Peggy (now Peggy Engel) can be found here: Touchstone Gallery, Yachats, OR
Recording courtesy Jack Straw Foundation, L0272
A regularly scheduled morning (10:00am) reading program was added to the programs in January of 1976 with Jonathan Holden reading H.E. Bates' Uncle Silas Stories. "Stanbery" was scheduled in the guide starting Mar 14, 1977. Though the dates on these two cassettes are at odds with the published schedule for Apr 1977, we will have to accept them. So, on Apr 18 Paul Stanbery read the first part of Edmond Hamilton's "The Inn Outside the World" (Weird Tales Jul 1945). On the 19th he finished "The Inn", followed by "Dodger Fan" by Will Stanton, and started reading "Turjan of Miir", by Jack Vance from "Tales of the Dying Earth".
The recording of Apr 18 ends with a station ID, and Stacey introducing KRABjazz, "Stacey's Mood". Apr 19 starts with music from South America wrapping up Stu Witmer's "Early Music", and ends abruptly with the end of the cassette.
Recordings courtesy Karen Berge, KB0104 and KB0105
Here's Peggy DeLeers reading from The Horse and His Boy, Book 5 of the Chronicles of Narnia, by C S Lewis. This episode is from near the end of chapter 7, "Aravis in Tashbaan" and beginning of chapter 8. The complete Narnia readings were heard on KRAB Apr to Aug 1977.
Recording courtesy Jack Straw Foundation, L0314
The Morning Reading sometime between Mar 1977 and Jan 1982. The exact date of broadcast or recording, is unknown. Krasnowsky and Mayfield are reading from Novas Cartas Portuguesas (published 1972) by Maria Teresa Horta, Maria Isabel Barreno, and Maria Velho da Costa. For the curious, more about it can be found here: THE THREE MARIAS: Whatever Happened to Portugal's Pussy Riot?
Recording courtesy Jack Straw Foundation, L0218-1
Frank Krasnowsky did a bi-weekly commentary for years, on Fridays alternating with Frederick B Exner. As the Commentary program faded from regularity, Frank began a series of readings from the political and social literature of "the left". Sometimes called "Left Press Review", "The Literate Left", or "Readings from Marxist and anarchist sources".
In a less serious vein, during the June 1976 Marathon, invoking the spirit of Fiorello H La Guardia, Krasnowsky read from the Sunday comics.
Recording courtesy of the Jack Straw Foundation, JSF inv L0218
John Bennet was scheduled for the evening readings of Jul 5 to 9, 1982. We often find ourselves prefacing these comments with "so far we have found", which is to say we know there was more, and there is always a chance that we will find more, but for now we have what we have, and are thankful for it. We are pretty certain that this is a portion of John Bennett's reading of Jul 5th, because Tiny and Bob West re-used the tape the next day. It is all there on the tape box.
Recording courtesy Estate of Bob West, BW1014
If you possess any souvenirs (program guides, tapes, or photos) or have a story about your experience with KRAB you are willing to share, please email firstname.lastname@example.org