Voice of the Homeland
Date: July 10, 2015 12:40PM
Perusing the obits in the Chicago Tribune this morning, I was saddened to hear of the passing of Alfred Richter, who hosted German language radio programs in the Chicago area for 60 years. I am mainly familiar with him though his program "Voice of the Homeland" which aired on WKTA 1330 AM from 1000 to 1200 for years. It was an unusual program in as much as it featured a wide variety of music and did not stick just to folk music, blasmusik, and schlager. He broadcast his last program last January, and I had been holding off writing him a thank you letter for all of his years of service, as my spoken German is pretty good, but my written German is a little shaky and writing a letter is a major undertaking.
I remember listening to a German language program named the "Deutschlandsender" which was broadcast during the dinner hour when I was a kid, but got much more interested in the local German broadcasts in the late 1980's. I remember back when you could listen to German programming all day Saturday and most of Sunday. Now, it's down to four hours on Saturday and just two on Sunday. While the internet now enables us to listen to local radio stations worldwide, I was surprised that the programming on most of these stations is not that different from what we hear at home. One internet only station I would like to share is memoryradio2.de, which plays a lot of the tonfilmschlager and operetta music from the 1920's-1950's.
Really sorry to see these local efforts go away tho. Alfred Richter came across as such a kindly man, it was a real pleasure to listen to him.