What do I play for Halloween?
You mean there’s something audio drama related the day after World Audio Drama Day?
Of course, Halloween has always been a favorite holiday for audio drama fans.
So, say you and the goblins at your place want to stream old time radio all of Halloween, or listen to it over the radio, even? Check first to see if any of your local stations appear on
OTR’s Old Time Radio Over the Airways. Support your regional radio stations if you can. Many will be hosting Orson Welles’ “War of the Worlds,” either as a rebroadcast, or doing their own version.
Reliable streaming sites include
Yesterday USA – You’ll want to support this Texas-based station. It’s one of the oldest in the nation (almost thirty years old) and has a “red” and “blue” stream, just like NBC.
The 1920s Radio Network – which also plays wonderful music from the 1920s through the 1950s. Grid 2 plays OTR all the time; Grid 1 plays Jack Benny and other comedy on Sunday and Saturdays.
The Old Time Radio Fan – Dave started his stream to make up for the loss of Southern California perennial, the KNX Drama Hour.
Oxford Classic Radio – our friends on Twitter, who make their playlist easy to use.
Brando Classic Old Time Radio – since 2001, our friends on Twitter offer many ways of enjoying OTR.
Please consider a donation to help support these free streams, which run 24-7.
Also check out TuneIn.com and similar sites like Streema. If a stream doesn’t work, check its website to see if its casting stream has changed: sometimes the directory sites don’t keep up.
And of course, if you have a satellite radio system and subscribe, you can tune in Greg Bell on RadioClassics.
Terror to Go – Podcasts and Embeds
But let’s say you can’t stream – and instead want to load your podcatcher (digital toy, virtual collection… or your old phone) with specific episodes. Want some new and old terrors to check out?
Here are nine good bets to start with:
11th Hour Audio – Every year, 11th Hour has at least eight new horror audio dramas, made freely available to listeners. Bookmark 11th Hour and download several shows from audio drama teams around the globe. But certainly consider starting with these two shows from 2018:
Aural Stage Studios is a big reason why 11th Hour has consistently produced so much great, spine-tingling horror every Audio Drama Day. In 2017, Five Levels of Fear, a new collaboration between Aural Stage Studios’ Matthew and Monique Boudreau, and Sable Jak, one of the main writers for Jim French Productions’ long-syndicated Imagination Theatre, was released. Start with the first episode below:
The Black Tapes is a slow burn, a paranormal mystery that begins when Alex Reagan meets paranormal investigator Dr. Richard Strand. If Halloween’s the day that you like to begin a new thriller series, start with a few episodes of this recent podcast hit.
Campfire Radio Theater – John Ballentine’s work is seriously scary. If you’re an old school horror fan, you’ll love it. Ballentine, first inspired by Nightfall, is also crystal clear about which episodes are not appropriate for a younger audience. His newest work for October 2019 is below:
Chatterbox Audio Theater has formally closed, but its episodes are still available. They did excellent work for children and performed in the Memphis schools, but their three part terror “Surfacing” is definitely not for children. (And not for quite a few adults.)
The entire series is available on the Chatterbox website, as well as previous year’s Halloween shows, which are also scary treats.
Nightfall, as explained here, is one of the most frightening and influential Silver Age audio dramas. Produced by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, but distributed over National Public Radio in the United States, it influenced many Generation-X aged podcasters of the present.
“Welcome to Homerville” is the sad but also terrifying story of a long haul trucker… or is it really a much older story?
Nightfall: Welcome to Homerville
“The All-Nighter” is an unusually chilling episode. One dark winter night, I had the chance to visit the Mr. Stadium laundromat, reportedly the “best in Michigan” – with Kevin Costner giving it free advertising in one of his films. You’d think that this mega laundromat would be glamorous, or at least kooky fun. Nope. It was creepy, even with bright lights and seven other people doing their laundry after midnight. This episode kept running through my head… its wonderful, one of a kind 80s synth beats… and its ending.
Nightfall: The All-Nighter
Quiet Please – “Don’t Tell Me About Halloween”, yes, but “The Thing on the Fourble Board” is so scary, and has such a wonderful reputation for creeping out listeners, it was even adapted for live theatre in recent years, playing to packed houses in Los Angeles. However, “Northern Lights” is probably my favorite spooky tale, in a series that has many ghostly, mysterious pieces, as well as “Dark Grey Magic”. Visit the Quiet Please website to download this literate, subtle show and all of its existing episodes, or stream the following.
Quiet Please: Don't Tell Me About Halloween
Quiet Please: Northern Lights
Quiet Please: Dark Grey Magic
Quiet Please: The Thing on the Fourble Board
We’re Alive – There’s never been a bad time to start listening to the massively popular zombie serial by Wayland Productions. However, there are definitely bad times to be a character in a Wayland Productions serial!
Consider also visiting Wireless Theatre Company’s online site; as one of the premiere audio drama production groups in Britain, and well, anywhere, their superb horror stories are available for a little more than a pound.