Music Broadcasting 1940s.doc (222 kB)

Music Broadcasting in Australia in the 1940s.doc

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posted on 29.09.2018 by Lynne Carmichael
This paper reports on research undertaken through the Scholars and Artists in Residence program of the National Film and Sound Archive in February 2009.

It outlines the nature of broadcast music in Australia during the 1940s and is based on the collection of the NFSA, in particular a number of oral history interviews with people who worked in the industry during the 1940s (and sometimes earlier).

By the 1940s recording technology existed to permit pre-recording of programs but, for a number of reasons, 'live to air' music was the preferred option until the advent of tape recording after World War Two. Nevertheless, recorded music does provide us with some evidence of particular genres of music that were popular - including Country music (often then called Hillbilly music) and Hawaiian music.

The paper also looks at ways in which recorded music from commercial sources was acquired and used on air. In general, music programming was very wide ranging rather than specialised - from classical music to country music and jazz (where this was permitted on the station). Programming was the role of the record libraries during this time.