BW – EP74: Jay M. Kholos of The Zero Hour & John C. Abbott of The Who Is Johnny Dollar Matter

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In Breaking Walls episode 74, we celebrate the WallBreakers’ 6th birthday with an anniversary extravaganza!

First, we’ll chat with the creator of the 1970s radio drama The Zero Hour, Mr. Jay M. Kholos.

Then, a portion of a recent conversation with the author of The Who Is Johnny Dollar Matter, Mr. John C. Abbott.

If you’ve been listening to this podcast, you know that for the past year I’ve been producing mini-documentaries on moments in American radio history. Episode 72 was on Yours Truly Johnny Dollar and the death of American dramatic radio on the Major Networks, and episode was on 73 on the attempted 1970s-1980s major network dramatic revival. If you haven’t heard episodes 72 or 73, I’d recommend going back and listening to them for story continuity.

And it’s along those lines that I’m proud to say the next episode of Breaking Walls, on February 15th, 2018 will be our 75th episode.

On this upcoming episode, Breaking Walls will take on a new long-term story arc: A chronological history of the American Radio Drama.

For anyone who doesn’t know what Radio Drama was… At one time, radio wasn’t just for talk and music. Prior to television people tuned into the radio to hear their favorite shows. In fact, many of the most popular shows on television in the 1950s were extensions of their radio versions.

This first episode of the documentary, episode 75 of Breaking Walls, will start at the beginning of radio in the late 19th century and work through the end of the first decade of the 20th century. Why those two points in time? Well… you’ll have to tune in to find out!

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Jay M. Kholos’ Hightlights:
• How Jay got his start in the advertising industry
• Why he’s got such an entrepreneurial spirit
• Where the idea to relaunch radio drama came from
• How nostalgia has influenced Jay’s creative endeavors
• Why you can’t make creative decisions by committee
• Where the inspiration for Orchard Street productions came from
• How Jay tabbed The Twilight Zone’s Rod Serling as the host of The Zero Hour
• A funny Rod Serling story involving an airplane
• Production highlights from Elliot Lewis and Patty Duke
• How AFTRA influenced Jay’s decision to make a distribution deal with The Mutual Broadcasting System
• Why Mutual’s Zero Hour was so disappointing
• Jay and Elliot Lewis’ Mutual Respect
• What’s next for Jay
As Jay mentioned, the Mizner Park Cultural Center in Boca Raton, Florida will be the site for his Orchard Street Production of Golda’s Balcony from May 2nd through the 13th of 2018. You can find out more information at

Editor’s Correction:
There are Old-Time Radio Conventions on the West Coast that feature actors who worked during in the Golden days of radio.

SPERDVAC will have an old-time radio convention starting on Thursday 11-1-18 and runs all day Friday 11-2-18 and Saturday 11-3-18. This year will be at the Crowne Plaza Hotel at 3131 Bristol Street, Costa Mesa, CA 92626.

The other big old time radio convention is produce by REPS go to

Collector, writer, and Old-Time Radio enthusiast Martin Grams runs a nostalgia convention in MD with old time radio panels and radio drama re-creations.

John C. Abbott’s Highlights:
• Growing up a baby boomer at the beginning of Television
• Thoughts on Bob Bailey as a Tragic Figure
• Why a show like Yours Truly Johnny Dollar was able to survive as long as it did
• John’s thoughts on Jack Johnstone
• Differences between radio drama preservation in New York and Hollywood
• Why John is revising his book, The Who Is Johnny Dollar Matter
• When the revised edition will hit book stores

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