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I Can Hear It Now - The Sixties

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Album Review

A double CD of soundbites from speeches, press conferences, broadcasts and the like from the '60s, narrated by famed newscaster Walter Cronkite (who wrote and edited the album with Fred Friendly). Note that the history documented on I Can Hear It Now/The Sixties is very much that of the '60s in the United States. There's some coverage of world events such as the 1967 Israel-Egypt Six-Day War and the 1968 Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, but the overwhelming bulk of it has excerpts from statements and speeches by U.S. politicians. Cronkite and Friendly also made a conscious decision to almost totally exclude coverage of the arts and some other forms of non-political culture, as they make clear in their liner notes. The model for I Can Hear It Now/The Sixties was actually a previous album by celebrated journalist Edward R. Murrow, who compiled an album called I Can Hear It Now devoted to events of 1933-1945; Cronkite and Friendly had the advantage of many more source tapes, in much better fidelity, from which to choose. It sounds a bit staid and staged decades later, but this does include plenty of famous soundbites of the '60s: the Kennedy assassination, the Bay of Pigs, Martin Luther King and the civil rights movement, escalation of the war in Vietnam, the 1968 presidential election, the 1969 moon landing, Nixon's "you won't have Nixon to kick around anymore" speech, Woodstock, student demonstrations, and more. If you want this sort of thing, for the archives or actual listening, it's a good deal, containing about 75 minutes per disc. The fidelity is not always state-of-the-art, particularly in the early part of the '60s, but it's never difficult to comprehend.


Born: 04 November 1916 in St. Joseph, MO

Genre: Spoken Word

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Cronkite was for many years one of the most visible and popular network television newscasters. In 1971, he narrated an extensive aural collage of famous soundbites from '60s speeches, broadcasts and events assembled for the album I Can Hear It Now/The...
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I Can Hear It Now - The Sixties, Walter Cronkite
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