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  The Accidental Archive – Our Early Work  
 
     
  The Road Ranger – 1980

Alan Little was a Vietnam Vet who returned from the war to become the self appointed "champion of the stranded traveler" a man in a mask and a jumpsuit who patrolled a hot, windy stretch of highway helping beleaguered motorists with his vast array of vehicle saving devices.

His was the first story we produced and had broadcast on National Public Radio some twenty years ago.

         
         
    The Legend of Ernest Morgan:
The World's Champion One-handed Pool Player

"It just got in your blood like a man on dope, or drinking whiskey, you  you gotta have it. I'd die if I didn't get to play every day a little bit. The football shot, I'll show you that in a minute..." Ernie Morgan traveled the pool halls of America shooting exhibition pool nightly, telling his life story.  The Kitchen Sisters produced this portrait of a pool shark for All Things Considered two decades ago.  NPR was hesitant to air because it didn’t have a narrator. We had to beg them to give it a chance.  They did, and it became our signature style.
   
         
         
  Tupperware

Somewhere in the world a Tupperware party happens every 10 minutes. The Kitchen Sisters explore the world of plastic bowls, home parties and Tupperware conventions. This piece is the second mix we ever did.  All hell broke loose in the studio.  Those were analog days.  We had two cassettes, two reel to reels, and a rickety board in the studio.   We mixed the whole piece in one take.  We didn’t know you could splice out your mistakes and do a  “pick up”. It took us maybe 50 attempts to get the sound we were looking for, but once we heard that cascade of voices we created by mistake on Take 47, we were sold on a new style of layering. 

Link: To hear >Tupperware on Hearing Voices
To read more >The Kitchen Sisters on Transom.org talk Tupperware

         
         
    War and Separation  - 1982

A portrait of life of the home front during WWII told through oral histories, radio broadcasts, music, soap operas and home recorded letters on 78's sent between soldiers and their wives and girlfriends. Produced for All Things Considered. This piece is really the inspiration for the whole Lost & Found Sound collaboration we created with Jay Allison some 20 years later.
 

     
 
         
    Route 66: The Mother Road - 1984

In 1984 the last stretch of Route 66 was officially closed. The road lay between history and a comeback. Only aged landmarks with names like “66 Motel” or “66 Diner” and a handful of tourist traps remained.  The road was reduced to a few stretches of fading frontage road and a series of re-numbered Interstates leading from Chicago to LA.

Program 1: The Main Street of America.  "I remember taking our a ruler a and a roadmap and seeing how many inches it was from Chicago - more than 2000 miles all the way.'" Songwriter Bobby Troup tells the story of his 1946 hit, "Get Your Kicks on Route 66." Gladys Cutberth, known as "Mrs. 66," and other members of the old "66 Association" talk about the early years of the road.  Mickey Mantle, who grew up along the highway recounts "If it hadn't been for U.S. 66 I wouldn't have been a Yankee." The beginnings of the highway and the making of a legend. Program 2:The Hard Road: 66 and The Great Depression.  
Program 3: Travel Route 66 - See the Wonders of the World.  
Program 4: Route 66 -The Television Show.  
Program 5:The Ghost Road


 
         
         
 




  Faces, Mirrors, Masks: Twentieth-Century Latin American Fiction

NPR Radio Series (Documentary and Drama)
Guillermo Cabrera Infante: Memories of an Invented City

A sound portrait of the exiled Cuban writer. Interviews with Cabrera Infante along with cinematographer, Nestor Almendros, painter Jesse Fernandez, activist Saul Landau, and others are included. Actors Lazaro Perez, and Ilka Tanya Payan are heard in dramatizations from his novel, Three Trapped Tigers The author's musical and cinematic influences and how these put him at odds with the leaders of the Cuban revolution, who were more interested in social realism.

Jorge Amado: The Ballad of Bahia, Brazilian author Jorge Amado, Gabriella, Clove and Cinammon Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands, Tent of Miracles, and more is chronicled and dramatized in this half hour documentary that includes interviews with Amado, his wife, Brazilian composer and singer Dorival Caymmi and singer and activist Harry Belafonte.


 
         
         
    Tucker: The Man and the Car of Tomorrow  - 1988

The mid-1940s found Americans gearing up for a consumer economy, and most of all they wanted a new car with new design. When Preston Tucker unveiled the car that bore his name -- a sleek, voluptuous sedan that featured innovations such as safety glass, seat belts, disc brakes and a third headlight, success seemed imminent. Americans flocked to showrooms to order the Car of Tomorrow, Today. But only 51 Tuckers were manufactured before the Tucker Corporation went bankrupt. The legacy of the visionary inventor is told by the chief auto stylist of the original Tucker Corporation; the president of the Tucker Club of America; Tucker's children; and Francis Ford Coppola, whose film grew out of his own childhood memories of the car his father ordered, but which never arrived. Produced by Davia Nelson for Helen Thorington's New American Radio Series.

 
         
         
    Carmen Miranda:  The Life and Fate of the Brazilian Bombshell

Interviews and reminiscenes by Carmen Miranda's sister Aurora, her husband, David Sebastian, her bandleader Aloysio d' Olivera, her friend, composer and driver Sinval Silva, and actor Cesar Romero. archival audio of Mario do Carmo Miranda da Cunha (Carmen Miranda),vintage Brazilian music, and a  1940's Hollywood musicals create this portrait of Brazil's Ambassador of Samba. Produced by Davia Nelson for Soundprint. Funded by The National Endowment for the Arts.


 
         
         
    The Nights of Edith Piaf - 1994

She rose every day at dusk and sang, rehearsed, performed, ate and drank and sang until dawn. Then she slept all day and began to create and unravel again as the sun went down. Nearly every song Edith Piaf sang, and she recorded over 400 of them, was a moment taken from her life in Paris. Piaf would tell her composers a story, or describe a feeling or show them a gesture. And they would put music and lyrics to her pain and passion, giving her back her own musical autobiography. Charles Aznavour, Francis Lai, Georges Moustaki, Henri Contet -- some of France's greatest musicians and composers recall their nights with the "The Little Sparrow". Produced by The Kitchen Sisters for Soundprint.


 
         
         
      Waiting for Joe DiMaggio

A newspaper headline “Sicilian village waits in vein for Jolt’n Joe” lures The Kitchen Sisters to Italy and this eccentric saga from Joe DiMaggio’s hometown.

Some of the other stories produced by The Kitchen Sisters include Tupperware, Home Recordings, The Making of Francis Ford Coppola's Dracula & Gardens of Stone, The Musical Saw Festival, The Bing Crosby Clambake, William Everson, The Armory Show, Imogene Cunningham, Comedy Writers, The Japanese Teahouse, El Dia de los Muertos, and Three Radio Stories from Alaska: HubChowder, Kodiak Boxing, The Mail Plane.

 
     
     
From Lost & Found Sound 
  • The Rise and Fall and Rise and Fall and Rise of Thomas Alva Edison - Parts I & II npr.org
  • Tony Schwartz: 30,000 Recordings Later npr
  • Cigar Stories: El Lector, He Who Reads  
  • Tennessee Williams: The Pennyland Recordings
  • 21st Century Cylinders
  • A Man with a Horn
  • We Record Anything-Anywhere-Anytime: Sam Phillips & the Early Years of the Memphis Recording Service
  • Electronic Memories: RA Coleman's Memphis
  • WHER: 1000 Beautiful Watts - Part 1
  • WHER: 1000 Beautiful Watts - Part II
  • Walkin Talkin Bill Hawkins: Searching for my Father's Voice
  • House of Night: The Lost Creation Songs of the Mojave People
  • French Manicure: Tales from Vietnamese Nail Shops in America
  • A Man Tapes His Town: The Unrelenting Oral Histories of Eddie McCoy
  • Persuading the Dead: The Persuasions Sing the Grateful Dead
  • Pan American Blues: Radio Stories from Nashville
  • The Sonic Memorial Project for Public Spaces
  • Stories of Love & Marriage atop the World Trade Towers
  • Walking High Steel
  • The Building Stewardesses at the World Trade Center 1968-‘71
  • A September Story
  • Liberace and the Trinidad Tripoli Steelband
  • Home Movie Day
  • Green Street Mortuary Band
  • From the Archives, Sophia Coppola at Age 5

    Lost and Found Sounds – Past Stories >

 
   
 
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