Mutual Broadcasting System
The Mutual Broadcasting System was an American commercial radio network in operation from 1934 to 1999. Mutual was best known as the original network home of The Lone Ranger and The Adventures of Superman. For many years, it was a national broadcaster for Major League Baseball, the National Football League, and Notre Dame football. The network was organized on September 29, 1934, with the members contracting for telephone-line transmission facilities.
About Mutual Broadcasting System in brief
The Mutual Broadcasting System was an American commercial radio network in operation from 1934 to 1999. Mutual was best known as the original network home of The Lone Ranger and The Adventures of Superman and as the long-time radio residence of The Shadow. For many years, it was a national broadcaster for Major League Baseball, the National Football League, and Notre Dame football. From the mid-1930s and until the retirement of the network in 1999, Mutual ran a highly respected news service accompanied by a variety of popular commentary shows. In the early 1970s, acting in much the same style as rival ABC had two years earlier, Mutual launched four subsidiary radio networks: Mutual Black Network, Mutual Cadena Hispánica, Mutual Southwest Network, and Mutual Progressive Network. The network was organized on September 29, 1934, with the members contracting for telephone-line transmission facilities and agreeing to collectively enter into contracts with advertisers for their networked shows. The majority of the early programming, from WOR and WGN, consisted of musical features and inexpensive dramatic serials. The final direct corporate parent, Westwood One, which purchased Mutual in 1985, was the seventh in a string of new owners that followed General Tire. Mutual changed ownership several times in succeeding years, even leaving aside larger-scale acquisitions and mergers, its final direct parent was Westwood 1, which bought Mutual in 1999. For the first 18 years of its existence, Mutual was owned and operated as a cooperative, setting the network apart from its corporate owned competitors.
Once General Tire sold Mutual in 1957, Mutual’s ownership was largely disconnected from the stations it served, leading to a more conventional, top-down model of program production and distribution. It is often claimed that Mutual was primarily a vehicle for the serial What What What? It is also claimed that the network was primarily as a vehicle. for the Western baseball game between the Cincinnati Reds and the Philadelphia Phillies. On May 24, 1935, the network aired its inaugural live event—the first game between Cincinnati and Philadelphia. In May 1934, it had begun broadcasting at a massive 500,000 watts, ten times the clear-channel standard. On December 30, 1936, when it debuted in the West, the Mutual Broadcasting system had affiliates from coast to coast. WOR had The Witch’s Tale, a horror anthology series whose narrator invited listeners to \”douse all lights. Now draw up to the fire an’ gaze into the embers … gaaaaze into ’em deep!…. soon be across the jungle land of Africa.’ WGN contributed the popular series Lum and Abner, which had already debuted in 1933 and was already popular in demand in Detroit. It was billed itself as \”The Nation’s Station,\” billing itself as “The Nation’s Station,” but it was actually called WLW–Cincinnati in May 1934. WLLW-Cincinnati was the first radio station to broadcast live baseball.