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TIGER: a Bring 'em Back Alive Story (audio)
A Bring 'em Back Alive Story

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, a children’s record, was Frank Buck’s last recorded performance. He was mortally ill as he read his lines, and was dead when Columbia Records released the album, April 17, 1950. Yet he sounds remarkably well, and the recording itself has the charm of an old-time radio show, complete with music, sound effects, and an actor growling like a tiger.

The tiger is a concatenation of two of Frank Buck’s cats. The first is the tiger from the story "Man Eater," which has been transformed into a cow-killer. No doubt the producers felt that a story about a man eater would upset little children; they were obviously unfamiliar with the gore-filled Grimm’s Fairy Tales. The second cat is the escaped leopard from the story "Loose on Board," which has become an escaped tiger. These two stories from Bring ‘Em Back Alive were combined in Tiger, and much of the original text was retained. Merrill Joels, a radio actor, is the narrator, Captain Harry Curtis.

Frank Buck’s salad days were long past as he sat at the microphone in a Columbia recording studio. His great fame and rock-star-like income of the 1930’s had withered. He was living quietly with his family in his San Angelo, Texas home, 324 South Bishop Street. 

The citizens of San Angelo had not forgotten Frank Buck. Indeed, it seemed as though every time he mailed a letter, the local newspaper was on hand to make a photo and write a story. "I was now Frank Buck, who had achieved fame in the jungles, in motion pictures, in literary circles, and in the show world," he wrote in his autobiography. Yet in his heart he was "still the small town Texas boy," who loved birds and animals "better than anything else on earth."  Nor had his books been forgotten. Classics Illustrated would issue three of them -- Bring ‘Em Back Alive, Fang and Claw, and On Jungle Trails--as comic books in the 1950’s. And the original Bring ‘Em Back Alive remained in print until the mid-1960s.