Broadway Is My Beat, a radio crime drama, ran on CBS from February 27, 1949 to August 1, 1954.
The opening theme of “I’ll Take Manhattan” introduced Detective Danny Clover, a hardened New York City cop who worked homicide “from Times Square to Columbus Circle—the gaudiest, the most violent, the lonesomest mile in the world.”
Danny Clover narrated the tales of the Great White Way to the accompaniment of music by Wilbur Hatch and Alexander Courage, and the recreation of Manhattan’s aural tapestry required the talents of three sound effects technicians (David Light, Ralph Cummings, Ross Murray). Bill Anders was the show’s announcer, as was Joe Walters.
The supporting cast included regulars Charles Calvert (as Sgt. Gino Tartaglia) and Jack Kruschen (as Sgt. Muggavan), with episodic roles filled by television, radio, and film stars such as Eve McVeagh, and such radio actors as Irene Tedrow, Barney Phillips, Virginia Gregg, Anthony Barrett, Herb Butterfield, Lamont Johnson, Herb Ellis, Hy Averback, Edgar Barrier, Betty Lou Gerson, Cathy Lewis, Harry Bartell, Sheldon Leonard, Martha Wentworth, Lawrence Dobkin, Howard McNear, and Mary Jane Croft.
Time was elastic, an easy trick in the theater of the mind. Stories close, more often than not on a pensive, melancholy note, quickly after the climax of the program. Rarely was the case reviewed; more likely Clover would philosophize, as in the show’s opening, with a bit of prose that ran from purple to stunningly poignant, ending in a reprise of the show’s setup, e.g.:
Broadway is sleeping now… the furious avenues of the night are still… only the sleepwalkers are there… the seekers, the sodden… it’s Broadway. The gaudiest. The most violent. The lonesomest mile in the world. Broadway… my beat!
With Anthony Ross portraying Times Square Detective Danny Clover, the show originated from New York City through May 29, 1949. Beginning on July 7, 1949, it orginated from Hollywood. Ross ended his time with the program on June 23, 1950; Larry Thor began playing Clover on July 3, 1950.
The series featured music by Robert Stringer, and scripts by Peter Lyon. John Dietz directed for producer Lester Gottlieb (eventually succeeding him as producer). Bern Bennett was the original announcer.
When the series was broadcast from Hollywood, producer Elliott Lewis directed a new cast in scripts by Morton S. Fine and David Friedkin.
A review in the trade publication Variety called the program “another whodunit with an incidental Gotham background that should appeal to the mystery fans.” The review also mentioned “smoothly meshing production gears, solid performances by an ace cast and some first-rate musical scoring by Robert Stringer.”
Country of origin United States
Starring Anthony Ross
Announcer Bern Bennett
Written by Morton S. Fine
Directed by Elliott Lewis
Produced by Elliott Lewis
Original release February 27, 1949 –
August 1, 1954
Opening theme I’ll Take Manhattan