THE MILKMAN'S MATINEE RETURNS TO THE AIR OCTOBER, 2020!
BIG BAND ERA MUSIC AND TALK TO TAKE YOUR LISTENERS THROUGH THE NIGHT OFFERED IN ONE HOUR GENERIC (NO DATES, TIME OR REFERENCE TO CURRENT EVENTS) SEGMENTS
Jeff Bressler's love of the history, sounds, and traditions of the no longer broadcasting WNEW AM 1130 in New York saw him pick up the torch of past hosts of the iconic MAKE BELIEVE BALLROOM with his popular new version of the program heard on community and public radio stations across the country.
Preserving the BALLROOM as well as his new MILKMAN'S MATINEE, both with histories going back to the 1930s is an important labor of love and dedication to the continuation of these two iconic shows.
The programs are non-commercial and seen as living histories of early broadcasting not to be commercialized or overly tampered with in terms of the format.
The Milkman’s Matinee started out in 1935 running 2:00 AM – 7:00 AM. It was an all-request program on WNEW-AM. Its first host was Stan Shaw.
In a studio perched high above Madison Avenue, Stan Shaw, along with an engineer and an assistant, stood watch over two turntables, a microphone, 10,000 records and two telegraph receiving machines taking 250 request telegrams each morning. Most came from Manhattan.
By 1942 a new man was behind the mike, Art Ford. Art hosted the show till 1954.
After Art, Jack Lazare took over and was a Milkman until 1963.
In 1976 Bob Jones re-launched the show. Bob took over the evening slot replacing Bob Hickok on “The Nightmare Show”. Soon Bob started to transform the time slot: “I brought my own personal copy of “The Milkman’s Matinee” theme and played 50 of the greatest records I could think of starting with “Because of You”.
The next day the secretaries told me that the phones did not stop ringing all night. Who was that guy playing all the wonderful music? Every time I did the show I called it “The Milkman’s Matinee”, pretty soon there was a “Milkman’s Matinee” again. In 1980 Bob left “The Milkman’s Matinee” to host the evening edition of “The Make Believe Ballroom”.
In 1981 Al “Jazzbeau” Collins returned to WNEW to host The Milkman’s Matinee. Upon his return he created a new illusion, Jazzbeau was now broadcasting from his inner sanctum, a place known as the Purple Grotto.
Later in 1981 Marty Wilson was hired as the weekend host of the ”Milkman’s Matinee” and shortly thereafter became the full-time Milkman following in the footsteps of a Jazzbeau and the other great hosts.
Marty introduced a number of features during that time including an audience participation novelty called “It Could Be Verse” where listeners would try to guess what song was playing just by listening to the verse. Marty would be the last host of the Milkman’s Matinee when he left WNEW in 1986.
Now almost 35 years later Jeff Bressler is returning the show to its rightful place on terrestrial radio stations around the country.