Hello, adventurers! I’m Finnley the Dolphin, your guide to the curious and captivating realms of the audio universe. Today, I’m thrilled to take you on an extraordinary journey through a piece of audio history that resonates deeply with the spirit of our channel, Finnley’s Audio Adventures. Our focus: “United Air Lines presents the Inside Story of Flight 120,” a record that stands as both a narrative marvel and a technological treasure, embodying the quirky and fascinating recordings we cherish here.

Our story begins in the nascent days of commercial aviation, with United Airlines emerging from its precursor, Varney Air Lines. Since its pioneering first flight in 1926, which carried mail from Pasco, Washington, to Boise, Idaho, United has been at the forefront of aviation innovation. This record, “United Air Lines presents the Inside Story of Flight 120,” is a testament to the airline’s rich heritage and its seminal role in shaping the skies.

United Airlines, born from the amalgamation of several early aviation enterprises, quickly established itself as a titan of the industry. It wasn’t just about ferrying passengers but trailblazing paths that would define air travel. In 1933, United introduced the Boeing 247, revolutionizing the skies with its all-metal frame and the capability for long-distance, non-stop travel—a milestone in aviation history.

The spirit of innovation didn’t stop with the aircraft themselves. United was among the pioneers in adopting flight simulators for pilot training in the 1950s, enhancing both safety and training efficacy. In the 1960s, they led the way in utilizing computers to manage their complex ticketing and reservation systems, culminating in the development of the Apollo Reservation System. This technological leap laid the foundations for today’s sophisticated global booking and logistics systems.

United’s commitment to progress extended to environmental stewardship. They were one of the first to adopt biofuels in a commercial flight back in 2011, underlining a commitment to sustainable travel and setting new industry standards in environmental consciousness.

Our exploration takes us further into the past with the pioneers at Eva-Tone, who revolutionized the typical vinyl record into the innovative flexi disc. These thin, flexible records allowed audio to be included as inserts in magazines or as giveaways in cereal boxes, democratizing the distribution of sound and making audio adventures more accessible.

Eva-Tone’s journey began in Deerfield, Illinois, where they initially focused on rubber stamp and plate manufacturing. In 1962, a pivotal development by Richard “Dick” Evans led to the creation of the flexi disc, transitioning Eva-Tone into a key player in flexible record manufacturing. Flexi discs were not just a technological marvel; they were a cultural phenomenon, enabling audio to be shared in novel and interactive ways, from educational tools and promotional items to artistic and political expressions.

The narrative and interactive nature of “United Air Lines presents the Inside Story of Flight 120” exemplifies how audio can engage and educate. This record, produced by the Human Development Institute in Atlanta, Ga., in 1965, invites listeners to assume the role of an airline pilot, guiding them through a commercial flight with a detailed script that simulates radio communications between the cockpit and air traffic control. It’s an immersive experience that not only entertains but educates listeners about aviation processes and terminology, transforming them from passive listeners to active participants.

This record is more than a listening experience; it’s a participatory adventure, offering insights into the life of a pilot and the intricate operations that ensure the safety and efficiency of commercial aviation. It serves as a dynamic educational tool, bringing the excitement and responsibilities of piloting into living rooms, classrooms, and beyond.

As we conclude our journey with “United Air Lines presents the Inside Story of Flight 120,” I hope it inspires you to delve deeper into the treasures of audio and aviation history. This record is a bridge to the past, a narrative wrapped in the technological innovations of its time, offering us lessons and stories that resonate through the ages.

So, dear listeners, keep your ears tuned and your spirits ready for more adventures. There’s a vast ocean of sound out there, teeming with tales that are strange, wonderful, and just waiting to be discovered. Subscribe and hit the notification bell to dive into each new episode with me, Finnley the Dolphin, as we navigate through the sonic waves together, uncovering the bizarre and the extraordinary in the vast waters of sound. Join us for a splash in the audio ocean, where every wave whispers a different story!


Berryman, Marvin E. “A History of United Airlines.” The United Airlines Historical Foundation, http://www.uahf.org/united_history_01.asp. Accessed 1 June 2024.

The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica. “United Airlines.” Encyclopædia Britannica, updated by Amy Tikkanen, 30 May 2024, https://www.britannica.com/money/United-Airlines. Accessed 1 June 2024.

Wang, Oliver. “The Wacky, Wiggly, Razor-Thin World of the Flexi Disc: Savoring the Playable Records Once Found on Cereal Boxes, Inside Magazines, and at Fast Food Counters.” Cuepoint, Medium, 26 Mar. 2015, https://medium.com/cuepoint/the-wacky-wiggly-razor-thin-world-of-the-flexi-disc-8d9463bce7a2. Accessed 1 June 2024.

Osborne, Jerry. “Soundsheets Clarifies Record.” Tampa Bay Times, 1 Mar. 1991, updated 12 Oct. 2005, https://www.tampabay.com/archive/1991/03/01/soundsheets-clarifies-record/. Accessed 1 June 2024.

“Eva-Tone Soundsheets.” Discogs, https://www.discogs.com/label/52271-Eva-Tone-Soundsheets?page=1. Accessed 1 June 2024.

“Unknown Artist – The Inside Story of Flight 120.” Discogs, https://www.discogs.com/release/2801874-Unknown-Artist-The-Inside-Story-Of-Flight-120. Accessed 1 June 2024.

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