[Former announcer Phil Shone talks about working at 1ZB].

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Tono kōrero mai

Unedited oral history interview with Phil Shone, 1ZB breakfast announcer of 1940s and 1950s, about his time with the station. Public reaction and his various stunts and special programmes.

Recorded for 1ZB 50th anniversary on the 23rd of October 1986.

Side 1: Maureen Sinton interviews Phil Shone for 1ZB's anniversary.
Came to Auckland in 1939 from 2ZB Wellington, had been at 2ZJ in Gisborne prior to that, since he left school.
Several Australian broadcasters were working for the New Zealand Broadcasting Service at the time, training New Zealanders. Uncle Scrim was pleasant, a broadcaster who lived and breathed broadcasting; recalls the outbreak of war and the wartime restrictions on broadcasting: no reference to anything Germanic; 1ZB's new Durham St building always had two staff on "firewatch" on the roof; recalls reactions to the modern building; tourists used to visit.
He was drafted in 1942 -1945 in the Army and Air Force; heard American stations in Guadalcanal and got ideas to use when he returned to broadcasting in New Zealand; gives examples of pranks he pulled on air: made radar contact with the moon; April Fool's jokes.
Played an Orson Welles-style prank in 1949: broadcast "warnings" from police that a swarm of wasps was approaching Auckland; recommended listeners put brown paper smeared with jam outside, block up keyholes in doors; told people to lie down flat and keep still, tie up their trouser legs etc. 1ZB received thousands of phone calls and letters and he had to go on air later and apologise.

Side 2. His boss told him to apologise; was not trusted with a microphone when the Queen visited in 1953, as a result of the wasp prank.
Wanted to take broadcasting outside with a car, but technicians were against it; so instead built a small studio on the roof of Trans-Tasman hotel where you could hear the noise of Auckland; broadcast breakfast session from there.
Commercials: recalls early advertisers and sponsors; was asked to go to work in Australia but was given the breakfast session and "Talking Shop" at 1ZB so stayed in New Zealand; explains how he came to leave 1ZB

Favourite item:

Request information

Year 1986

Reference number 115

Media type AUDIO

Collection Sound Collection

Genre Interviews (Sound recordings)
Sound recordings

Credits Shone, Phil, Interviewee
Sinton, Maureen, Interviewer

Duration 00:53:54

Date 23 Oct 1986