Archive for October, 2013

FTV 390 Poor People’s Campaign

Posted in Update on October 31st, 2013

In 1968, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, led by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was planning The Poor People’s March on Washington D.C. as part of the War on Poverty. Dr. King was adamant that the Poor People’s March and campaign did not focus just on poor African Americans but included poverty-stricken people without deference to race, creed or color. Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, Asians, Native Americans, and Caucasians, particularly from rural Appalachia were recruited to join the campaign. He planned to lobby congress for an Economic Bill of Rights which would include affordable housing and a guaranteed annual income for the poor of this country.

Dr. King would not live to see the March. But thanks to the efforts of the Reverend Ralph Abernathy, who took over the leadership role of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, and others such as Jesse Jackson, Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta, poor people from around the country began their trip to Washington, DC by any way they could manage. For most of these poor people, this trip was an enormous financial sacrifice, yet a necessary burden – they would hand-deliver their message to Washington. Some of this journey was recorded by Pacifica producer Arthur Alexander along the road from Memphis Tennessee to Washington DC.

Once in Washington DC, activists constructed an encampment on the Washington Mall dubbed Resurrection City. This was used as a base camp for strategy meetings, teach-ins and speeches. On May 13th, 1968, the first sojourners arrived at Resurrection City, and Pacifica producer Ellen Kohn was there to record the events as they unfolded and to interview those who were there. Kohn captured the opening ceremonies, where the new president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (Abernathy – now dubbed ‘Mayor of Resurrection City’) delivered a moving address. But perhaps the most powerful moment of the campaign was when the Reverend Jesse Jackson led the citizens in his call and response anthem I Am Somebody.

Mid-June of 1968 saw the population of Resurrection City peak at 50,000 people; but after heavy rains, dampened spirits, confused agendas and the assassination of Presidential candidate Robert Kennedy, Resurrection City was closed on June 24th, 1968. Although the campaign is viewed as a failure, the experiences of those who took the journey– featured this week on From the Vault – are critical to the dialog of race and poverty in America.

From the Vault is presented as part of the Pacifica Radio Archives Preservation and Access Project, funded in part by an award from the GRAMMY Foundation and the National Historical Publications and Records Commission at the National Archives and Records Administration, and past grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ford Foundation, and the American Archive funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, along with the generous support of Pacifica Radio Listeners. We also thank our partners and collaborators at the Pop-Up Archive, Amara, Other Minds Archives, George Blood Audio, and the California Audio Visual Preservation Project.

PURCHASE a copy of this program or learn more about the historic archival recordings used within this episode. To purchase a CD copy of this program by phone, please call Pacifica Radio Archives at 800.735.0230 x 262.

Play

FTV 389 Che & Allen by Julio Martinez

Posted in Update on October 25th, 2013

This week on From the Vault we present Che & Allen, an original radio drama inspired by sound recordings of two iconic figures found in the Pacifica Radio Archive collection, Argentine Marxist revolutionary Che Guevara and Beat poet Allen Ginsberg. Written by KPFK Arts in Review host and dramatist Julio Martinez, this fictional meeting of the minds takes place in 1965 at Hanratty’s Bar and Hotel in Limerick, Ireland, where Guevara and Ginsberg discuss politics, revolution, sexual preference, art, and poetry over drinks. Martinez, throughout Che & Allen does a masterful job capturing the intelligence, wit, and oratory skills that each man would bring to the debate, as well as their sensibilities in searching for common ground.

From the Vault is presented as part of the Pacifica Radio Archives Preservation and Access Project, funded in part by an award from the GRAMMY Foundation and the National Historical Publications and Records Commission at the National Archives and Records Administration, and past grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ford Foundation, and the American Archive funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, along with the generous support of Pacifica Radio Listeners. We also thank our partners and collaborators at the Pop-Up Archive, Amara, Other Minds Archives, George Blood Audio, and the California Audio Visual Preservation Project.

PURCHASE a copy of this program or learn more about the historic archival recordings used within this episode. To purchase a CD copy of this program by phone, please call Pacifica Radio Archives at 800.735.0230 x 262.

Play

FTV 388 JFK Assassination – 50th Anniversary

Posted in Update on October 18th, 2013

On this edition of From the Vault we feature two recordings to mark the 50th anniversary of one of the most tragic and perplexing incidents in American history, the November 22, 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy. The first recording is a 1968 interview conducted by KPFA legend Elsa Knight Thompson with Josiah Thompson, who had just authored the book Six Seconds in Dallas, a comprehensive investigation which became enormously influential on public perception of the tragedy. The second program, titled The Assassination of JFK: The Garrison Interview, includes an interview with lead investigator Jim Garrison, excerpts from a pre-assassination interview with Lee Harvey Oswald, and analysis by Oliver Stone, John Davis, and Dr. Phillip Melanson on links between Oswald and the United States intelligence agencies.

From the Vault is presented as part of the Pacifica Radio Archives Preservation and Access Project, funded in part by an award from the GRAMMY Foundation and the National Historical Publications and Records Commission at the National Archives and Records Administration, and past grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ford Foundation, and the American Archive funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, along with the generous support of Pacifica Radio Listeners. We also thank our partners and collaborators at the Pop-Up Archive, Amara, Other Minds Archives, George Blood Audio, and the California Audio Visual Preservation Project.

PURCHASE a copy of this program or learn more about the historic archival recordings used within this episode. To purchase a CD copy of this program by phone, please call Pacifica Radio Archives at 800.735.0230 x 262.

Play

FTV 387 An Homage to Albert Einstein

Posted in Update on October 10th, 2013

This week on From the Vault we present a recently digitized fifty year-old KPFK program celebrating the life of physics godfather Albert Einstein. The News & Public Affairs Department at KPFK, led by Jack Daly, produced An Homage to Albert Einstein, which was broadcast March 14, 1962 – on what would have been Einstein’s 83rd birthday. Narrator James Wilcox introduces the program and accompanies us through the musings of Upton Sinclair, Julius Sumner Miller, Jimmy Durante, Herschel Bernardi, and Edward G. Robinson.

From the Vault is presented as part of the Pacifica Radio Archives Preservation and Access Project, funded in part by an award from the GRAMMY Foundation and the National Historical Publications and Records Commission at the National Archives and Records Administration, and past grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ford Foundation, and the American Archive funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, along with the generous support of Pacifica Radio Listeners. We also thank our partners and collaborators at the Pop-Up Archive, Amara, Other Minds Archives, George Blood Audio, and the California Audio Visual Preservation Project.

PURCHASE a copy of this program or learn more about the historic archival recordings used within this episode. To purchase a CD copy of this program by phone, please call Pacifica Radio Archives at 800.735.0230 x 262.

Play

FTV 386 Inquest at Christiana, Part 2 of 2

Posted in Update on October 4th, 2013

This week on From the Vault we present the conclusion of Inquest at Christiana, a radio drama that exemplifies the genre and is a testament to Pacifica Radio’s embrace of radio arts. Written by Jon Katz, this play was adapted from the historical documents of the fugitive slave resistance at Christiana, Pennsylvania, on September 11, 1851 – the so-called “Christiana Riot.” Heard in the cast are Lois Adler, Jay Bonnell, Crystal Field, Brannon Hall, Walter Jones, Frank MacFie, Marvin Peisner, and Ashton Young. Folk songs are performed by John Bassette. The Technical Director is Edgar Walker. Produced and directed by Jon Katz, this production was first broadcast on February 11, 1968 a week prior to Negro History Week (now Black History Month).

John Bassette, who is heard performing folk songs throughout Inquest at Christiana, appears in another Pacifica Radio Archives recording – the storied “Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial in Central Park,” where on April 5th, 1968, Bassette found his way on stage with Pete Seeger and Ossie Davis for an impromptu performance. Selections from this historic audio featuring Bassette are featured in the second half of this episode.

From the Vault is presented as part of the Pacifica Radio Archives Preservation and Access Project, funded in part by an award from the GRAMMY Foundation and the National Historical Publications and Records Commission at the National Archives and Records Administration, and past grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ford Foundation, and the American Archive funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, along with the generous support of Pacifica Radio Listeners. We also thank our partners and collaborators at the Pop-Up Archive, Amara, Other Minds Archives, George Blood Audio, and the California Audio Visual Preservation Project.

PURCHASE a copy of this program or learn more about the historic archival recordings used within this episode. To purchase a CD copy of this program by phone, please call Pacifica Radio Archives at 800.735.0230 x 262.

Play