The Rialto Report is 100 episodes old today.
When I first had the idea of doing a golden age adult film podcast, I realized it was a pretty specialized and niche subject area. But I thought that the real history of this time had never properly emerged, and I wanted to provide a place where it could be told by the pioneers, in an unfiltered way. Good or bad.
I read somewhere that the average number of podcasts that people put out is 7. I figured I was good for 4, and if I really tried, maybe I could kick it up to 6. Good enough, I thought. Let’s do it.
At that stage, I didn’t know what I wanted to do, but I sure as heck knew what I didn’t want to do.
Firstly – I didn’t want it to be commercial: so that meant no ads, no promotions, no banners. I hate ’em. I’m sure you do too. Everything should be free in life.
Secondly – I only wanted this podcast to feature people who were actually there, in the trenches of the business, taking the risks, suffering the consequences or enjoying the spoils – their voices have been neglected over the years, and I wanted to hear from them. That meant no bloggers, academics, or cultural commentators. The world has too many opinions right now. I just want real stories.
And finally – I wanted no me. Nothing about me, or indeed nothing about any other host of this show. This isn’t about the presenter, it’s about the subject. Most of the time, I just want to get out of the way.
Except for this episode. On this 100th podcast, I want to look back at some of the favorite moments from the last 99. And tell you stories behind how we got anyone to agree to an interview in the first place. Sometimes, I can’t believe we did. In fact, I have no real idea who listens to this. But you’re listening. And I’m happy to have you here.
We’re 100 episodes old today. We made it past 7. So come on let’s celebrate. This is for you and me.
This episode is 141 minutes long.
The music playlist for this episode can be found on Spotify.
This episode, featuring highlights from the last 99 podcasts, includes:
|Rhonda Jo Petty: Happiness is the Truth (podcast 68)
Rhonda’s candid and moving interview covers her difficult upbringing, her entry into the adult business in 1970s California, and how she’s found peace on a ranch in Arizona.
Originally aired April 16, 2017
|George Payne: Wild Man of Porn (podcast 2)
George appeared in many New York adult films – both straight and gay – and straddled the film and video era too. And he could really act; his performances seethe with a nervous, unpredictable energy.
Originally aired March 10, 2013
|Paul Thomas: The 10 Provocations of PT (podcasts 88 & 89)
Why did Philip Toubus – brought up in financial privilege and with recognized performing talent – enter the porn industry? Our interview tries to get at answers – and hold PT’s healthy ego in check.
Originally aired February 17, 2019
|Uschi Digard: SuperSoul (podcast 19)
Uschi Digard was an indestructible, formidable pin up beauty who was emblematic of the sexual revolution in California. From the late 1960s through to the early 1980s, she was in hundreds of magazine spreads, had many issues dedicated to her, and appeared in countless softcore films.
Originally aired August 25, 2013
|Jeanne Silver: Real Wild Child (podcast 8)
For a time in the 1980s, Jeanne was a regular in New York adult films and a featured dancer at the Melody Burlesk Theater – but her life started on the other side of the country in Arizona where she was born and grew up with the stigma of having part of her foot and leg amputated at an early age.
Originally aired April 28, 2013
|George McDonald: The First Adult Film Star (podcast 54)
George McDonald was an adult film star at a time when there were no adult film stars. He started in the era of short, silent 8mm films and saw first hand the progression to full-length pornographic features within a couple of years.
Originally aired September 6, 2015
|R. Bolla: Adult Film’s Method Actor (podcast 12)
Robert Kerman, star of Debbie Does Dallas and scores of porn films in the 1970s and 1980s, talks about his life as a struggling actor in New York, driving a cab to make ends meet, his move into adult film work, and how he nearly broke into the mainstream.
Originally aired June 2, 2013
|Helga Sven: Her Mystery. And Her Fan. (podcast 21)
Helga’s story includes tales of mid-1980s video porn, the Vegas mob, Stalin’s Red Army, John Holmes, child abduction, Frank Sinatra, arson, attempted murder, and Candy Samples.
Originally aired September 22, 2013
|Jeff Stryker: Porn’s Enigmatic Star (podcast 26)
Tales of Jeff’s upbringing, his start as a male stripper, delivering balloon-o-grams, meeting John Travis, Matt Sterling and Chuck Holmes and entering the adult film business, the success of films like Powertool and Jamie Loves Jeff, his notorious shower scene in Stryker Force and his escape from the public eye.
Originally aired December 1, 2013
|Jennifer Welles: The Lady Vanishes (podcast 3)
Jennifer Welles breaks a 35 year silence to speak publicly about her life and career in adult films.
Originally aired March 17, 2013
|Marty Hodas: King of the Peeps (podcast 38)
Marty introduced peep show machines into Times Square – creating the basis for the adult film industry, and changing the face of New York in the process.
Originally aired June 29, 2014
|Marlene Willoughby: New York’s Archetypal Porn Star (podcast 42)
Marlene Willoughby was the archetypal 1970s New York adult film actress – which was strange as she is a Polish / Italian Catholic from Detroit. She acted in controversial off-off Broadway plays, had a successful modeling career, and in 1975 entered the adult film industry.
Originally aired October 12, 2014
|Radley Metzger – 1971 (podcast 73)
We go back to 1971 to hear from pioneering filmmaker Radley when he was in the middle of making movies, and culture and times were so different.
Originally aired September 24, 2017
|Henri Pachard: When He Was Ron Sullivan (podcast 66)
But back in the 1960s, Henri Pachard was just Ron Sullivan, and he was a young filmmaker in New York City trying to learn about filmmaking any way he could. He was part of a small group of pioneering and revolutionary filmmakers that helped create the modern day adult film industry.
Originally aired November 20, 2016
|‘More, More, More’: The Search for Andrea True, and the Creation of a Disco Sensation (podcast 69)
In the 1970s, Andrea True was a rarity. She was a porn star that many people had heard of – even if they knew nothing about porn. She belonged to a select group of adult film actors whose names were widely known for a short time: Linda Lovelace, Marilyn Chambers, John Holmes, and yes, Andrea True.
Originally aired May 21, 2017
|Christy Canyon: A Twelve O’Clock Girl in a Nine O’Clock Town (podcast 90)
Christy Canyon talks about her life as a pioneering performer at start of the video age of adult films and how she’s still going strong in the industry today.
Originally aired April 28, 2019
|John Stagliano: Truth and Reality (podcast 92)
John started out in the mid 1970s as – take your pick – an aspiring writer, economist, dancer, magazine publisher, actor, and performer in sex loop. He then turned himself into one of the most successful developers of adult film of all time.
Originally aired November 10, 2019
|Jerry Butler: Young, Wild and Wonderful (podcast 37)
Jerry’s book – Raw Talent – was named after his best-known film, which told the story of a talented but struggling actor who gets sucked into making porn films, winning the fame he craved, but losing himself along the way. It was almost like porn was imitating real life. Except Jerry’s real life was more extraordinary and crazy than anything he played on the big screen.
Originally aired June 8 2014
|Roberta Findlay: A Respectable Woman (podcast 53)
Roberta had a long career in film spanning several completely different eras: from the 1960s black and white films of her husband Michael Findlay, to the soft core films she made on her own for Alan Shackleton in the early 70s, to the long sequence of hardcore films she made with famed New York music studio owner, Walter Sear, and finally the horror films that she directed in the late 80s.
Originally aired August 16, 2015
|Billy Dee: Porn Again Christian (podcast 56)
Everybody we talked to from the golden age loved Billy Dee. Directors loved him because he came prepared to deliver his lines and could always get wood. Actresses loved him because he was handsome, kind and a talented sexual partner. Actors loved him because he didn’t hog a scene and was fun to grab a beer with.
Originally aired November 15, 2015
|Al Goldstein: Screw, Midnight Blue, and Fuck You (podcast 31)
Al Goldstein, the founder of Screw magazine, helped break down legal barriers against pornography and raged against politicians, organized religion and anything that suggested good taste.
Originally aired February 23, 2014
|Jamie Gillis: New York Beginnings (podcast 25)
Jamie Gillis is the adult film actor whose career started in 1971 and spanned the next 35 plus years, including memorable performances in films such as The Opening of Misty Beethoven, The Story of Joanna, The Seduction of Lyn Carter, and Neon Nights.
Originally aired November 17, 2013
|Whatever Happened to Candy Samples? (podcast 55)
Candy was in black and white cheesecake photo sets from the late 1960s, thousands of magazine appearances, and scores of films – from softcore to hardcore, from loops to catfight wrestling shorts. Her staggering physique made her an instant favorite, and for many years she toured as an exotic dancer. Somehow she just seemed to get better with age.
Originally aired October 18, 2015
|Keli Richards: Coming Out Of The Shadows (podcast 84)
Keli Richards’ career in adult films was short and sweet. Her flame burned brightly at a time when Ronald Reagan was president, video was king, and Los Angeles was staking a claim to be the adult film capital of the world. Then Keli recently decided to make an adult industry comeback after three decades.
Originally aired October 14, 2018
|Johnnie Keyes: The Man Behind The Green Door (podcast 59)
Johnnie Keyes was the first black porn star, and from the moment he emerges in Behind the Green Door(1972), dressed in nothing but crotchless tights and an African necklace, nothing was quite the same again..
Originally aired March 13, 2016
|Randy Spears: Hear My Prayer (podcast 96)
Randy was a good-looking guy with solid acting chops and a talent for comedy, and he made close to 2000 adult movies between 1988 and the early 2010s. Randy’s is a tale of porn and love, drugs and jail, death and God.
Originally aired March 8, 2020
|‘Deep Sleep’ (1972): How a Suburban Porno Set Off a Massive Federal Witch Hunt (podcast 52)
In 1972, Alfred Sole, a first time filmmaker, made an X-rated film called ‘Deep Sleep’. The production went on to face state and federal prosecution and placed many of those involved – including the film’s lead actress Kim Pope – in danger.
Originally aired July 25, 2015