Monday, February 22, 2021

Bob Crane Biographers Carol Ford, Linda Groundwater Interviewed on 'The Claw's Corner'

It is always an honor to share Bob Crane's life story. There is always a lot to tell. Bob's life was full, and rich, and detailed, and sometimes, complicated. Like every human being, he had his joys and sorrows, his triumphs and set-backs, and his highs and lows. To tell his story properly and in the right context takes time. Occasionally, if the host agrees, we provide a thorough interview that can last several hours. 

My very first presentation about Bob Crane was in 2015 at the MidAtlantic Nostalgia Convention, and it was supposed to be one hour. I went on for about an hour and a half, and talking at the speed of light at the end! While my audience didn't seem to mind, the hotel staff who wanted to flip the room for the next event weren't too thrilled. 

On January 30 and 31, 2021, Linda Groundwater and I were interviewed about Bob Crane by Richard Cyr, host of The Claw's Corner. We always go into these interviews thinking, "Will we have more than an hour?" Because there's so much to say! Well, Linda and I provided Rich with four solid hours of our time. We loved it—because we love talking about Bob Crane.

In our book, Bob Crane: The Definitive Biography, we provide rich details of Bob as told to us, in most cases exclusively, by more than two hundred prominent individuals from his life. Our book and all of our work attempt to remove judgment and stigma, allowing for perspective, understanding, and ultimately, clarity about Bob Crane, the human being. He was more than a murder victim. He should not be a target of ridicule. We don't paint him out as a saint, and we don't demonize him. We provide truth. And because we care so much about Bob and his family, friends, and colleagues, we talk about him properly—every chance we get.

Below is our two-part episode of The Claw's Corner. I hope you enjoy it! (And be sure to watch for the cameo by Cinnamon, Linda's energetic, happy-go-lucky puppy dog!) 

The Claw's Corner With Guests Carol Ford and Linda Groundwater Part 1

The Claw's Corner With Guests Carol Ford and Linda Groundwater Part 2

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Bob Crane — U.S. Armed Forces Radio Network (1968) [New Find!]

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. I love it when I find new airchecks of Bob Crane's Radio Show. It's like a treasure hunt for me. They are so rare, and when they do surface, I'm giddy with excitement—like a kid at Christmas. I don't know what Bob will say, but I know I will be entertained. I might even learn something new.

My latest find was Part 2 of a show Bob recorded for the U.S. Armed Forces Radio and Television Network (AFRTN). Between 1967-1969, Bob recorded numerous shows for the AFRTN, during which he played songs, did some drumming, jibber-jabbered with his own pre-recorded voice impersonations, and interviewed guests or spliced in his pre-aired celebrity interviews from his time at KNX-CBS Radio. Many of these AFRTN recordings exist; however, they are incredibly difficult to find. 

Bob donated a lot of his time and broadcasting talents for many different charities, something for which he is given little to no credit. In October 1967, the following was published in the Valley News publication (Van Nuys, California) about his charity work:

Hogan’s Heroes own Colonel Hogan, Bob Crane, is one man who answers the call of civic groups, charities, and worthy organizations, no matter where they might be. Up to one-third of his free time is spent assisting and appearing in behalf of such groups. For instance, during his recent “HH” hiatus, he volunteered more than thirteen hours worth of Armed Forces Radio material. He brought laughs to the ex-POW convention in New Mexico. Pending is a grand marshal stint at the Richmond Tobacco Festival and full participation in the current Cystic Fibrosis Drive. And there’s more, much more. This “Hogan” is a real hero.

Think about that. One-third of his free time was donated to charity, which included United Cerebral Palsy, American Heart Association, the Arthritis Foundation, Funds for Dinah (a fund-raiser for an eleven-year-old Ohio girl with kidney disease who needed dialysis, but whose family could not afford the lengthy car trips to the dialysis clinic from their rural home), Operation Entertainment, entertaining U.S. veterans and former prisoners of war, public service announcements, and the list goes on.

In this recording, Bob includes his pre-recorded interviews with Otto Preminger, Bill Dana, Steve Allen, and Jayne Meadows, all of which originally aired on KNX in the early 1960s. 

I hope you enjoy our latest find! And don't worry—I'm always on the look out for more!