“The Barbra Streisand Special” (1979 ABC Entertainment Radio Network Interview)

“Barbra Streisand Special” Credits

Ad for 1979 Streisand radio special

ABC Entertainment radio features produced an hour-long radio program, The Barbra Streisand Special, which aired on 400 stations across the country the week of June 17, 1979, to coincide with the release of Streisand's eleventh motion picture, The Main Event.

Streisand's songs were intercut with the interview. Barbra's friends and co-workers were also interviewed.

Newspaper article about radio special

The 2-LP set, as sent to radio stations, included a program operations sheet with listings of songs, and time and cue instructions.

The following article was written about the special:

ABC has taken great care to produce a first rate portrait of superstar Streisand here. And their efforts hae paid off. The 51-minute show (nine minutes out for commercials) was cleared by more than 450 stations including WOR-AM New York, WCLR-FM Chicago, WPEN-AM Philadelphia, WBZ-AM Boston, WMAL-AM Washington, KDKA-AM Pittsburgh and WSB-AM Atlanta.

The show is a musical biography as it traces Streisand's musical career from “Happy Days Are Here Again” to her latest disco offering from the movie of the same name, The Main Event.

Each of the 12 songs included is introduced by Streisand and some of the people who have been associated wit her such as agents or composers. To get the highest quality for the selections ABC went to CBS Records and used master tapes to put the show together.

The program opens with Streisand speaking on how she “pounded the pavements to try to become an actress for two days” and so many “terrible things happened” that she “gave it up and became a singer.”

She then tells of the “small world”of her childhood in Brooklyn and her dreams of “becoming a star.”

One of the most thoughtful moments of commentary of the program is where Streisand is talking about her recording of “People.” She recalls that she told lyricist Bob Merrill that he had the lyrics “all wrong.”

She explains, “No, Bob, it's people who don't need people are the luckiest people in the world.”

The show is hosted by Hy Agens, who is a free-lance announcer generally working in commercials. He pulls the comments from Streisand and others who are interviewed together to keep the program slowing. Chris Kershaw of Kershaw West put the incidental music together.

Listent to an edited 14:26 minute excerpt of the special:

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Thanks for help on this page: Mark Iskowitz & Barbra Memories Blog

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