Side Tracks

Outside of the ridiculousness of Great Northern Audio Jerry Stearns and Brian Price have worked independently in practically every capacity of audio theater—from writing and digital editing to producing, directing and SFX to sound design and engineering for a pile of professional and amateur radio theater groups and artists. We’re proud of this work and encourage you to check out more about some our favorite audio theater friends and colleagues.

Also listed below are some works from the
Archives of the Great Northern Audio Theatre. Sought-after works from our past that are only available here.
  • Sound Affects: A Radio Playground

    Sound Affects: A Radio Playground
    Audio theater, comedy and the audio arts.

    Jerry has been hosting the
    Sound Affects broadcast on Community Radio KFAI since 1994. It's a showcase of modern audio theater from all over the world. I will play Old Time Radio on occasion for historical reference, but mostly I'm offering the new material that is being made today, or at least since network radio drama ceased.

    Schedule of coming attractions.

    9:30 - 10:30 PM CST
    90.3 Minneapolis/St. Paul
    Streaming on
    Archives kept 2 weeks after broadcast
  • Shockwave

    Shockwave poster by Ken Fletcher
    For 13 years, Jerry and Dave Romm and Brian Westley hosted Shockwave on community radio station KFAI-FM in Minneapolis/ St. Paul. During that time, from 1979 through 1993, they produced a large catalog of very silly original science fiction and fantasy works with help from a large and active Fannish community, including especially Kara Dalkey. Here are a few pieces from the Shockwave shows performed at Minicon, a Twin Cities regional science fiction convention, or done in the studio. Shockwave went on between 1994 and 2007, under Dave Romm and Brian Westley.

    (RIGHT: Poster by Ken Fletcher. ) –>

    • The Pirate Sketch - was part of a longer work titled, "Generic Movies", in which the characters and story went on, but the genre of the movie changed periodically. This is, naturally, the Pirate Movie portion. (3:39 minutes)
    • The Dead Tribble Sketch - a crossover between two universes - Star Trek and Monty Python's Flying Circus. (3:31 minutes)
    • The Landing At Davis Corners, IA - a scene from Warp of the Worlds, a parody by Jerry and Kate Worley. (5:21 minutes)
    • Cable Video at the Spaceport - a typical Shockwave show with the boys marveling at the technology in the St. Paul Spaceport. Jerry, Dave Romm, Brian Westley. (27 minutes)
    • Goblin Tax - a play by Allen Varney about gamers whose role playing becomes all too real. (28 minutes)
    • The Food Wars Saga, by Kara Dalkey. Yes, she wrote all three movies entirely in Food Puns. And we recorded each one in an entirely different manner. Food Wars 1: A New Cook (20 m). Food Wars 2: The Empire Bakes Off (45 m). Food Wars 3: The Repast of the Jello. (Live. 30 m)
    • Night of the Cooters, a Howard Waldrop short story, adapted with permission of the author for the 1992 Shockwave Minicon show. It's a War of the Worlds as it might have happened in Texas. (Live. 29 m)
    • Vince Washburn, the New Age Detective. The first script, "Penalty For Early Death," won the MRTW script contest in 1988. We performed it in 1987 at a Shockwave Minicon show. The second episode, "If You've Got the Time," was part of the first show we ever did with David Ossman, called Coming Soon To A Galaxy Near You, at Minicon 31. Both brought to us by Astral Travel. (VW 1 is 22 minutes. VW 2 is 25 minutes.)
    • Shockwave at the GigaMall. A fairly typical show with some script and plenty of improvisation (with the music removed) by Jerry, Dave Romm, Kara Dalkey, Brian Westley and Doug Friauf. We travel to the St. Paul Spaceport’s new immeasurably huge GigaMall (“A thousand times bigger than the MegaMall and Twice the Fun.”). (16 minutes.)
    • In Memory of Dave Romm. Baron Dave passed away in September of 2017. This is a Sound Affects (10/1/2017) show we did in tribute to the boundless creativity of Dave. Especially take note of The Possible Dream, one of Dave’s best playing-with-language pieces. (One hour.)

    • Spindizzy. A collection of silly sci-fi sketches originally published on one of those floppy records you used to find in magazines. (19 minutes, 24 MB). Includes Preconceptions: News of the Future and Captain Audio and the Space Cassettes. Full of science fiction references. The title is from James Blish’s Cities In Flight novels. Cover art by Kara Dalkey.
  • Star of Vengeance

    Star of Vengeance
    This is a ten-part serial written by Andre Guirard, and produced by Jerry for the Shockwave radio show. We include here in MP3 format all ten episodes for you.

    CAST: Starring Charlie Meitzner and Sarah Eschweiler, with Dave Romm. Also in the cast were Brian Anderson as the narrator, Jerry Modjeski, Greg Moore, Kara Dalkey, Jerry Stearns, Joan Philips, JinTai Li and Jennifer Syverson. Original music by David Zimmerman and Leo Lenander.

• Fearless Comedy Productions

Big Fun Radio Tuntime!
Big Fun Radio Funtime!

A periodic production by Tim Wick, one of our regular players in the Mark Time Radio Shows. We are pleased to be able to contribute to Fearless Comedy Productions on occasion. Here are some of the pieces we wrote.

Lighter Than Heavy

The Zombie Sketch

The Sword in the Couch

A Day in the Library

A Very Druid Christmas

Practicing Safe Karaoke

Is It Right For Me?

In The Shop

• The Iowa Radio Project

The Iowa Radio Project
Back in the early 1990's we worked for Dan Coffey's Iowa Radio Project. When Dan wasn't being Dr. Science, he produced and taught radio at the University of Iowa in Iowa City. We don't know where Dan got the goofy postcards he used to market the series, but they were certainly appropriate.

as a sort of staff writer, wrote 15 Iowans Abroad episodes. Here are the first three, and his favorites. "The idea was to do a 30-minute TV sitcom in 5 minutes. We got it down to 4 minutes. It was loads of fun and Dan got to use all his goofy accents."

Here is another piece from each of us done for the IRP: Brian's,
Bringing Back Your Dirt sketch, and Jerry's golf horror short, The 13th Hole.

  • The Grist Mill

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    The Grist Mill is a horror audio production house out of Lowell, MA, headed up by Scott Hickey. One of their best releases is God of the Razor, a terrific horror story by Joe R. Lansdale. He's a familiar character in Lansdale stories. Script adaptation by Jerry Stearns, direction and post production by Brian Price, with music by Mike Wheaton.

    After it was reviewed by Fred Greenhalgh on Radio Drama Revival podcast in 2008, this comment appeared on the RDR site:

    Chris Dueker says
    May 24, 2008

    Since writing this excellent review Fred has podcast “God of the Razor” as part of a Halloween show on this website. It’s every bit as good as he says – frankly, it’s the most compelling, best produced piece of audio drama I’ve heard in at least the past three years. So if you haven’t already, download it!


    Brian directed Mort Castle's
    If You Take My Hand, My Son.

    Another to look for is
    Slasher, adapted and directed by Brian from a story by F. Paul Wilson.

    Thanks to producer
    Scott Hickey for letting us post these.

  • Scripts and Services

    Several of our scripts have been produced by other groups. See more on the Scripts and Services page.

    And we offer audio theater services of various kinds. See our
    About Us page for details on what we have in the way of experience.

    In Print

    Here are some works we have published in print somewhere.
    Brian’s short story: The Secrets of Blackberry Pie.
  • The Dakota Reader

    Brian Price produced The Dakota Reader, a series of performances through the South Dakota Institute of Art in Brookings. They included a variety of presentations, including local poets and musicians, audio theater, and presentations on aspects of audio arts. We may have a few CDs of these still around: Jerry Stearns' treatise, "The Best Aliens Are the Ones Only You Can See: A History of Science Fiction on Radio, 1930 to 2001", and Rev. Dwight Frizzell's "From Ark to Microchip: A History of Audio Art, 10,000 BC - 2010."

  • Audio Theater Conferences

    Twin Cities Radio Theater Workshop 1997

    TC Radio Theater Workshop

    In 1997 Jerry and Brian organized the Twin Cities Radio Theatre Workshop, meant to be a live presentation of audio theater written by local writers and performed by local actors. It was open to the public in the Rarig Center Theater on the University of Minnesota campus, and broadcast live on KFAI-FM and KUOM-AM at the University. The first half, Tirebiter's Follies, was an original variety hour written and directed by David Ossman, of the Firesign Theatre. The second hour, the part that was broadcast, consisted of five short pieces. Here are the original works from that broadcast.

    Independent Producers' Conference

    In October of 2004 Jerry, Brian and Kris Markman assembled the Twin Cities Independent Audio Theater Producers' Conference in Minneapolis, hoping to help producers talk to each other and exchange ideas and create a community of audio theater makers. Thirty people attended from around the country.

    The Keynote speech at the
    Conference, was by Judith Walcutt and David Ossman, of Otherworld Media. A history of audio theater in America over the last 30 years of the 20th Century, through the exploits of one independent audio theater production team. Great Northern Audio hosted the conference.

  • Reviews

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    Brian writes reviews for Audiofile magazine of audio theater and audiobooks. Some of them he records for their reviews podcast. Hear his review of Frank Herbert's "Dune," and one of Jack Finney's "Invasion of the Body Snatchers." He also wrote a column called The Echo of One Hand Clapping for AudiobooksDJ, a now defunct website about aspects of new audiobooks. The column was some notes on audio publishing and production.

    Read some of Jerry's
    reviews of science fiction audio theater on this website.
  • Others we have worked with

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    • Transylvania Television. Silly puppet TV sketches, featuring Gordon Smuder's writing and voice.
    • Crazy Dog Audio Theater, Dublin, Ireland. Roger Gregg, director.