Tuesday, February 07, 2012

At 1560 on your dial, Radio Oom Pa Pa


You got your Germans, and you got your Czechs, and you got your Poles. In the Midwest, that means you got your polka.

Somewhere on the radio dial every weekend, there are two beats in a measure, with a quarter note getting a beat. Except when there are three -- Oom, his brother Pa, and his other brother Pa.

Back in 1950, there was even more of it in the air . . . and over the airwaves. This part of the country was plumb polka crazy. Polka bands. Polka dances. Polka records. Polka programs.

Some people were so polka crazy, they'd record it off the air onto 10-inch, 78 rpm transcription discs with something called a Recordio. It's a radio . . . it's a record player . . . it's a disc recorder!

That's exactly what the Campagna family was doing one fine spring Sunday in south Omaha -- 11:15 in the morning, to be exact, June 11, 1950. You see, it was
Polka Time, live and direct from the palatial Strand Theater studios of KSWI, the radio voice of the Daily Nonpareil in beautiful Council Bluffs, Iowa!

Polka Time is brought to you by Modern Appliance Co., at 24th and N streets in south Omaha. Your host . . . Frank Urban. And in the studio, live music by Ed Svoboda and the Red Raven Orchestra.

Vítáme Vás!

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