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A thread about--test pattern instrumentals.
Self | 5/30/'08 | Zionist Conspirator

Posted on 05/30/2008 10:32:58 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator

Those of you of a certain age will recall a time when TV stations didn't stay on the air constantly but signed off late at night (with the National Anthem) and signed on again early in the morning. And in those days televisions had tuning buttons on them that had to be adjusted by hand so the snowy signals from far away could come in as clearly as possible.

Each morning the station would begin the day with a "test pattern" (usually with an Indian's head somewhere about for whatever reason) so the viewer could tune his set for the day (including getting the color right). Anyway, during these fifteen minutes or so of the test pattern the station would play the most beautiful, delightful music--always instrumental and perhaps what would be called "easy listening."

Ever since getting on the Internet I've been trying to find material on these test pattern instrumentals. Unfortunately, their title and performers were never given so it's very hard to search for them on YouTube or Napster. Just by accident I know a couple of them: Java by Al Hirt and That Happy Feeling by Bert Kaempfert (the holy grail of all test pattern instrumentals, available on YouTube), but there are so many more that I can remember but whose titles or performers I am totally ignorant of.

One in particular I've been thinking of lately is one that was (I believe) featured on an episode of "I Love Lucy" when Ricky sang in in full "native" costume (of course, the test patterns only used the instrumental version). I've tried to find that episode of "I Love Lucy" online just so I could get an idea of the title and look for it.

Is there anyone else out there who has a nostalgia for these long-departed phenomena of those days? Does anyone else know any specific titles or performers?


TOPICS: Chit/Chat; History; Miscellaneous; Music/Entertainment
KEYWORDS: internet; music; nostalgia; vanity
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1 posted on 05/30/2008 10:32:59 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator
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To: wideawake

Maybe you have knowledge on this subject?


2 posted on 05/30/2008 10:34:01 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ve'elleh toledot 'Aharon uMosheh, beyom dibber HaShem 'et-Mosheh beHar Sinai.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator
It's a sign that we, as a society, have arrived is when we become nostalgic for Test Patterns.

:^)


3 posted on 05/30/2008 10:38:28 AM PDT by Cyber Liberty (Who would McQueeg rather have mad at him: You or the liberals?)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

4 posted on 05/30/2008 10:38:53 AM PDT by Delta 21 ( MKC USCG - ret)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

I only vaguely remember those from early childhood as the stations went to different formats quickly afterwards to the color bars.

I used to get up on Saturdays mornings very early because the first thing that came on was the Creature Feature. I would set the TV right, get some cereal and juice and curl up with the dog ready for Boris or Lon or Godzilla.


5 posted on 05/30/2008 10:42:13 AM PDT by doodad
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To: Cyber Liberty
::Stares in an entranced state::

But where is the music? I want my music!

6 posted on 05/30/2008 10:42:18 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ve'elleh toledot 'Aharon uMosheh, beyom dibber HaShem 'et-Mosheh beHar Sinai.)
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To: Cyber Liberty

I’m 66 and I recall staring at the TV and at this exact test pattern for long periods of time, waiting for the Houston TV station to come online with a program from the “network”.


7 posted on 05/30/2008 10:42:26 AM PDT by i_dont_chat (The elephant has fallen and it can't get up.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

Is THAT what the test pattern was for? I never knew till now, thanks.

I always thought they were as the name implied, to “test” that the broadcast equipment was working; I never thought that it was to fine tune the TV.


8 posted on 05/30/2008 10:44:44 AM PDT by FourtySeven (47)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

Pluck your magic twanger, Froggy

http://michelesworld.net/dmm/frog/gremlin/memory.htm


9 posted on 05/30/2008 10:44:44 AM PDT by i_dont_chat (The elephant has fallen and it can't get up.)
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To: All
You people are missing the point! This thread is about the instrumentals, not the patterns themselves!

Here is a YouTube video set to Kaempfert's That Happy Feeling, the greatest test pattern instrumental of them all. Does anyone out there know any of the titles or performers of others?

10 posted on 05/30/2008 10:47:54 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ve'elleh toledot 'Aharon uMosheh, beyom dibber HaShem 'et-Mosheh beHar Sinai.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

Babalu?


11 posted on 05/30/2008 10:48:10 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: Cyber Liberty

I’m not nostalgic for test patterns but I do miss local television.

People bemoan the end of local radio and local newspapers.

But local television came to an end first.


12 posted on 05/30/2008 10:49:04 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: i_dont_chat

Believe it or not, Smilin’ Ed (and even Andy) were before my time.


13 posted on 05/30/2008 10:49:34 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ve'elleh toledot 'Aharon uMosheh, beyom dibber HaShem 'et-Mosheh beHar Sinai.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

Well, excuuuuuuuse me.

(smile)


14 posted on 05/30/2008 10:50:28 AM PDT by i_dont_chat (The elephant has fallen and it can't get up.)
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To: weegee
Babalu?

No. I think it was in the episode where Lucy gave birth to Little Ricky and Ricky came to the hospital in full costume, but I'm not sure.

15 posted on 05/30/2008 10:51:36 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ve'elleh toledot 'Aharon uMosheh, beyom dibber HaShem 'et-Mosheh beHar Sinai.)
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To: doodad

You could calibrate your tv picture tube to a black and white test pattern.

Few people ever color calibrate to the color test patterns.

But I got one of David Lynch’s self-released DVDs and he had several screens of calibration settings so you could get your equipment close to the calibration he intended.

Criterion laserdiscs used to also come with color calibration test patterns at the end of the disc (I think a green contrast/sharpness screen as well as the color bars).


16 posted on 05/30/2008 10:52:09 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

The music could be literally anything. I’m quite sure the music was simply selected by somebody at each local TV station, so there are as many answers to your question as there are TV stations in the US.


17 posted on 05/30/2008 10:52:18 AM PDT by Cyber Liberty (Who would McQueeg rather have mad at him: You or the liberals?)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

I did not know that that was the purpose of the test patterns. Thanks, I learned something.

BTW, I don’t remember an Indian. I just remember one bid circle with lines forming a kind of cross. Also, I never remember hearing music — just an annoying, electronic whine. (I grew up in Maryland, and our TV stations were in Baltimore.)


18 posted on 05/30/2008 10:52:30 AM PDT by Bigg Red
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To: Zionist Conspirator
I believe most of the test pattern music was generated by ballroom bands in the Southern California area who would play smooth jazz/easy-listening hits composed by people like Kaempfert and Mancini.

I would guess that a lot of this music wound up on compilations by now-defunct labels like Pacific Jazz.

There is a UK reissue house called Proper that is taking advantage of the disparities between US and UK intellectual property law to pronounce lots of 50+ year old music as "public domain" and to sell it at a very low price (US$14.99-19.99 for a 4 disc set).

They have, for example, a cheap box set of more than 120 recordings by Artie Shaw's orchestra.

19 posted on 05/30/2008 10:53:23 AM PDT by wideawake (Why is it that those who call themselves Constitutionalists know the least about the Constitution?)
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To: weegee
"I do miss local television."

Slam Bam Theater?

20 posted on 05/30/2008 10:53:23 AM PDT by Deaf Smith (There is room at the table for all of God's creatures, right next to the mashed potatoes.)
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To: i_dont_chat

How many people are nostalgic for watching the tv picture tube turn completely OFF as the picture shrank down to dot before fading out?


21 posted on 05/30/2008 10:53:25 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: weegee
Arg! This thread isn't about local television! It's about the music they played during test patterns!

And for your information, local kiddie shows ruled! Show me a national network with the guts to show a Bosko cartoon!

22 posted on 05/30/2008 10:53:29 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ve'elleh toledot 'Aharon uMosheh, beyom dibber HaShem 'et-Mosheh beHar Sinai.)
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To: wideawake
Thanks, wideawake. I knew I could count on you!

Do you have any idea of what some of the frequently used titles were?

23 posted on 05/30/2008 10:56:20 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Ve'elleh toledot 'Aharon uMosheh, beyom dibber HaShem 'et-Mosheh beHar Sinai.)
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To: Deaf Smith

24 posted on 05/30/2008 10:57:27 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: Bigg Red

I don’t remember hearing music with the test pattern.

Just the annoying static, which we turned down.


25 posted on 05/30/2008 10:57:27 AM PDT by i_dont_chat (The elephant has fallen and it can't get up.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

Sorry ZC. I am with the other guy in regarding it as localized to what the station had. Being in military towns we were as likely to hear Souza marches as anything. When The Star Spangled Banner came on; time for monsters.


26 posted on 05/30/2008 10:58:29 AM PDT by doodad
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To: Zionist Conspirator

It’s all relative though.

It wasn’t national networks airing test patterns. It was the local channels.

And the local tv programs used their own bumper music too.

In Cleveland, for example, they used instrumental songs by Jimmy McGriff. He had a hit with “I’ve Got A Woman”. It was played as movie program bumper music for decades in Cleveland.

And he died this week:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/28/arts/music/28mcgriff.html


27 posted on 05/30/2008 11:03:18 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

test card music

http://www.testcardcircle.org.uk/


28 posted on 05/30/2008 11:03:22 AM PDT by i_dont_chat (The elephant has fallen and it can't get up.)
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To: weegee
That was a cool effect. I learned later that it was due to the sweep circuits for horizontal and vertical deflection turning off more quickly than the electron gun in the picture tube. The sawtooth wave was generated by vacuum tubes and as soon as the “grid” voltage dropped below a critical level the tubes would shut off. The lack of sweep would cause a brief centering of the beam, and that coupled with the persistence of the phosphors would result in the slowly-fading central “dot”.
29 posted on 05/30/2008 11:03:48 AM PDT by chimera
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To: Zionist Conspirator
I know that there were variants of the RCA test pattern already shown in this thread, but for station signoff I recall several different clips used by my local TV stations as a kid.

YouTube has these that I remember:

Flag Evolution

This one has a Pittburgh PA station ID, but the following USAF 'High Flight' segment I remember well.

I remember the USAF 'High Flight' poem with footage of a silver F4 Phantom II with early '60s markings the best. The version of 'High Flight' I linked above shows F16s, which came far later. I was unable to find the F4 'High Flight' footage on YouTube.

30 posted on 05/30/2008 11:07:06 AM PDT by The KG9 Kid
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To: Zionist Conspirator
Korla Pandit had his own show in LA. Maybe his records were also used there...

Les Paul used to also have a tv show.

This was back in the days I think when tv shows would be even as short as 15 minutes.

31 posted on 05/30/2008 11:07:56 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: chimera

I’m glad I never had to explain to my parents what I was observing. I’m just glad that I got to extend my bedtime by like 5-10 seconds waiting for it to disappear.


32 posted on 05/30/2008 11:09:26 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: weegee
This was back in the days I think when tv shows would be even as short as 15 minutes.

Huntley/Brinkley NBC News used to be 15 minutes and then there was 15 minutes of local news, weather and sports.

33 posted on 05/30/2008 11:10:04 AM PDT by N. Theknow (Kennedys: Can't drive, can't fly, can't ski, can't skipper a boat; but they know what's best for us)
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To: i_dont_chat
Hiya kids...Hiya, Hiya, Hiya

I'll be good!
I'll be good!
I'll be good!

And now Midnight the cat.

Nice....Nice....

34 posted on 05/30/2008 11:12:31 AM PDT by N. Theknow (Kennedys: Can't drive, can't fly, can't ski, can't skipper a boat; but they know what's best for us)
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To: Zionist Conspirator
Coolest test pattern?

Channel One Test Pattern by Ed Epstein, � 1967, Pasta Productions, Inc.

35 posted on 05/30/2008 11:14:58 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: weegee
Some Memphians will surely remember this guy:


36 posted on 05/30/2008 11:15:05 AM PDT by NCC-1701 (PUT AN END TO ORGANIZED CRIME. ABOLISH THE I.R.S.)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

Another tv staple was Take 5 by Dave Brubeck.

So was A Taste Of Honey by Herb Alpert At The Tijauna Brass.

And there were a lot of “industrial” records just use for background and bumper music and in house advertising.


37 posted on 05/30/2008 11:16:31 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: weegee
OMG!!! I remember The Ghoul. I grew up outside of Akron and used to beg my mother to let me stay up late to watch that show.

He helped begin my life long love affair with B grade sci-fi movies.

Thanks for digging that up weegee.

L

38 posted on 05/30/2008 11:17:33 AM PDT by Lurker (Islam is an insane death cult. Any other aspects are PR, to get them within throat-cutting range.)
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To: The KG9 Kid

Yes we ended the day at Ft.Bragg with the poem. F4 as well.


39 posted on 05/30/2008 11:17:52 AM PDT by doodad
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To: Zionist Conspirator
Another hit:


40 posted on 05/30/2008 11:18:17 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: Lurker

He’s STILL active too.

His mentor, Ghoulardi, was Ernie Anderson, the voice of ABC television (”This IS A-B-C...”). Ernie died about a decade ago, if I recall.


41 posted on 05/30/2008 11:19:25 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: chimera
I learned later that it was due to the sweep circuits for horizontal and vertical deflection turning off more quickly than the electron gun in the picture tube. The sawtooth wave was generated by vacuum tubes and as soon as the “grid” voltage dropped below a critical level the tubes would shut off. The lack of sweep would cause a brief centering of the beam, and that coupled with the persistence of the phosphors would result in the slowly-fading central “dot”.


That's the most abstract and unusual description of political failure I've ever read.............oh you're talking about old TV sets.......nevermind....
42 posted on 05/30/2008 11:25:01 AM PDT by macamadamia
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To: weegee
His mentor, Ghoulardi,

I remember Ghoulardi, too. My mother could never understand how I could watch those movies. But when we spent the night at friends houses, it was Ghoulardi who was tuned in and several neighborhood kids were gathered around the black and white set waiting for him to scare the crap out of us.

As I said before, those guys instilled in me a life long love of bad B grade Sci Fi that I've now passed along to Lurker Jr.

I hadn't heard Ghoulardi had passed. May he rest in peace.

"PARMA!!!!"

L

43 posted on 05/30/2008 11:26:41 AM PDT by Lurker (Islam is an insane death cult. Any other aspects are PR, to get them within throat-cutting range.)
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To: The KG9 Kid

44 posted on 05/30/2008 11:27:10 AM PDT by JZelle
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To: weegee

I had forgotten about Ghoulardi. Funniest man on TV. Ever.


45 posted on 05/30/2008 11:27:20 AM PDT by TexanToTheCore (If it ain't Rugby or Bullriding, it's for girls.........................................)
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To: Lurker

TTTC removes cowboy hat:

“Parma!”


46 posted on 05/30/2008 11:28:52 AM PDT by TexanToTheCore (If it ain't Rugby or Bullriding, it's for girls.........................................)
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To: Zionist Conspirator

47 posted on 05/30/2008 11:30:57 AM PDT by JZelle
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To: Zionist Conspirator

What’s TV?


48 posted on 05/30/2008 11:32:04 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/_______________________Profile updated Monday, April 28, 2008)
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To: TexanToTheCore
Ernie went to California when a former comedy partner of his started to make it big on McHale's Navy:

Tim Conway lost his comedy partner this week.

Ernie got a boost from Carol Burnett who used to talk to the audience on camera at the opening of her show and point out "Ernie Anderson" to people.

49 posted on 05/30/2008 11:36:03 AM PDT by weegee (VOTE MCCAIN: Susan Saradon says she will move to Italy or Canada if he's elected)
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To: JZelle

That’s the one I remember. Our local CBS affiliate played that one, and there was a narration of the poem, IIRC.


50 posted on 05/30/2008 11:37:08 AM PDT by knittnmom (...surrounded by reality!)
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