When I tell people that I work with Springbok Radio material at the SABC Radio Archives, I, in most cases (if age allows) see the curtains of remembrance open, and memories starting to roll in their eyes... “I remember how we used to rush home from school to listen to the afternoon stories”, “I remember Taxi... and do you have Squad Cars...?”, “There used to be this quiz program... oh, and the Sari Award served as a jump start for a lot of artists...” and “Springbok Top 20, with, who again, oh yes, David Gresham...” are some of the dialogue playing in these memories. And yes, I remember, in fact, it is so fresh in my memory as if it happened yesterday, because, well, it did! Yesterday I listened to 13 programs of High Adventure, last week I listened to General Motors on Safari, and next week, let’s see, The Pip Freedman Show might happen all over again.
That is my job and my passion, to retrieve and catalog as many Springbok Radio Programs possible, in order to make it available to you, the loyal Springbok Radio listener.
It all started with Frans Erasmus, from the Springbok Radio Preservation Society, whose passion for Springbok Radio never ceised. He collected a lot of programs throughout his life, and is still working at it to get material from all collectors out there. Yes, a lot of the programs still exist. People recorded it, producers kept it, and now, through Frans, it is coming back to the SABC. Factors like re-use of tapes and the non-existence of an official Archive in those years contributed to the fact that the SABC Radio Archives didn’t have a lot of the Springbok Radio material. Copyright and broadcast rights of most of the material belong to the SABC though, which means exploitation by any means must go through the SABC.
My mission is to make Springbok Radio material available to the public. I believe it belongs in the ears of those who remember, and of those who love good radio. Therefor, with Frans’ help, I am retrieving as much material possible, as well as the copyright details thereof, so that you can buy and listen to the material again.
At the moment the focus is on “obvious” programs, of which the copyright clearly belongs to the SABC. What I do is to catalog the material, and publishing the catalog to the SABC Media Libraries page. Listener’s can then order material from our Radio Program Sales Department. After this I will work on less obvious programs in order to clear the copyright and also make that available.
In the meantime programs can be listened to on the Springbok Radio Preservation Society’s stream. I have a dream to make programs digitally available someday soon. There are a lot of permissions needed for this, therefor it is a lengthy process, but I will keep at it till whenever!
So, folks, keep listening, and “if I don’t see you through the week, I’ll see you through the window.”
The cast of "Taxi", Patricia Sanders, George Korelin & Tony Jay
Senior Archivist: Eng & Afr requests / Springbok Radio
Tel: +27 11 714 2772