Rod McKuen radio scripts
Scope and Contents
The collection consists of fifteen radio scripts written principally by McKuen for his shows on KROW Oakland AM radio: eight from "Rhonda Vou with Rod" and seven from "Rendezvous with Rod." These typescripts may represent McKuen's earliest surviving work, dated November 18, 1950 to January 10, 1953.
The eight scripts of "Rhonda Vou with Rod" total approximately 110 pages and are dated Nov. 18, Dec. 2, Dec. 9, and Dec. 16, 1950, and Jan. 13 (mislabeled 1950), Jan. 27, and Feb. 3, 1951. A single poem is introduced in each of the last three dated scripts: "The Night before Bellevue" (Jan. 13), "She Was Only an Upholsterer’s Daughter, but She Certainly Knew Her Stuff" (Jan. 27) and "Who Put the Soup in Louie’s Bass Fiddle?" (Feb. 3). The eighth, undated short script of "Rhonda Vou with Rod" is attributed to Ed Mortimer, who played Santa in the Dec. 2nd script. The seven scripts of "Rendezvous with Rod" total approximately 150 pages and are dated Dec. 6, Dec. 13, Dec. 18, Dec. 26, and Dec. 27, 1952, and Jan. 3 and Jan. 10, 1953.
Most of the typescripts are carbon copies. In the first set, two typescripts are marked as Bruce Sedley's copies.
- Creation: 1950 November 18-1953 January 10
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is housed off-site and requires 48-hours' notice for retrieval. Contact Special Collections for more information.
Conditions Governing Use
Single copies may be made for research purposes. Researchers are responsible for determining any copyright questions. It is not necessary to seek our permission as the owner of the physical work to publish or otherwise use public domain materials that we have made available for use, unless Johns Hopkins University holds the copyright.
Biographical / Historical
Rod McKuen (1933-2015) was an American poet and singer-songwriter. At age seventeen, he started a weekly show on Oakland’s KROW 960 AM radio. It continued for two and a half years, until McKuen was drafted into the US Army and sent to Korea.
The first show, "Rhonda Vou with Rod," combined comedy and music and featured McKuen alongside other radio personalities, including Bruce Sedley. A single poem is introduced in each of the last three dated scripts. The second show featured McKuen alone, performing extended poetic monologues and playing pop hits. Themes include love, loneliness, and occasionally sex. Although he eschewed labels, McKuen was an advocate for gay rights and is celebrated for his gay and gender-neutral love songs and poems.
Source: Alfonso, Barry. A Voice of the Warm: The Life of Rod McKuen. Lanham, MD: Backbeat Books, 2019.
15 Items (Fifteen scripts)
Language of Materials
Rod McKuen (1933-2015) was an American poet and singer-songwriter. The collection consists of fifteen radio scripts written principally by McKuen for his shows on KROW Oakland AM radio: eight from "Rhonda Vou with Rod" and seven from "Rendezvous with Rod." These typescripts may represent McKuen's earliest surviving work, dated November 18, 1950 to January 10, 1953.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Purchased from Downtown Brown Books in July 2021.
Processed by Brooke Shilling in April 2022.
- Guide to the Rod McKuen radio scripts
- Brooke Shilling
- 2022 April
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
Part of the Special Collections Repository
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