Published in September 2015, Bob Crane: The Definitive Biography contains the first-hand testimonies, memories, and recollections from 200 prominent individuals from Bob Crane's life. Family, friends as far back as grade school, and coworkers in radio, television (including many from Hogan's Heroes), theatre, and film have helped tell his complete story. In addition, the hard cover edition contains more than 200 rare family and professional photographs, some never before published or seen by the public until now. Discover the truth! If you think you know Bob Crane before reading this book, you don't know him at all. Author profits will be donated to various charities in Bob's memory.
Official Statement about the Re-Investigation of Bob Crane's Murder (11/23/16)
"We—my coauthors and I, members of Bob Crane's family, his friends, and his colleagues—are always hopeful that one day, the true identity of Bob's murderer will be known and justice can be served. However, this recent investigation did not reveal any groundbreaking information or provide a resolution, and the subsequent media coverage did nothing more than bring unnecessary heartache to many who knew, loved, and cared about Bob. We do not discuss or endorse any speculative theories as to who may have committed the crime. We encourage those who want to know more about Bob Crane to discover his complete and true life story in Bob Crane: The Definitive Biography. All author profits are being donated to various charities in Bob's memory."
—Carol Ford, author, Bob Crane: The Definitive Biography

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Commercial Break! Columbia Records - March 1957

It isn't unusual for a DJ or radio personality to read a commercial from a sponsor, whether live or recorded. For Bob Crane, however, commercials were just another avenue to include gimmicks, sound effects, or voices. In the clip presented here (scroll to bottom of post), Crane promotes a new offer from Columbia Records, only to have his sidekick, "Charlie," objecting to the type of music Columbia is trying to sell. 

Why would a company even bother buying air time when it knew the product or service was fair game for a hearty roasting?

The beauty of Crane's style of humor is that it got people to listen. How many times do you change the radio station when a commercial comes on? Or in broader terms, fast forward through your DVR to skip the commercials? Probably quite frequently. These days, perhaps the only time we choose to watch commercials is during the SuperBowl. Why? Because they are clever, different, and often funny.

On Bob Crane's radio show, listeners stayed put to hear the commercials on a regular basis. They wanted to hear the advertisements because they never knew what Crane might do next. He made people laugh, and for that, advertisers rarely backed out, but instead, paid top dollar to be on Crane's show. It doesn't matter what time or place or medium. If you can get people to want to watch or listen to commercials, that's genius. And that is the word so many of Bob Crane's radio colleagues have used to describe him.

Columbia Records Buy of Broadway Commercial
The Bob Crane Show / KNX-CBS Radio
March 27, 1957

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For more about Bob Crane: The Definitive Biography, which was published on September 17, 2015, visit