I've no idea who Bill and Betty were, but these records were quite common and popular before the 1960s. They were essentially "under the table" records that were considered smut at the time, so you had to know someone or some place that would sell them.
The Arkansas bit, by the way, is an old burlesque routine and was undoubtedly recorded many times by this underground form of entertainment. My guess is that Bill and Betty were a burlesque/party/convention circuit couple that did these jokes regularly.
From: Marie O'Connell <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Tue, October 20, 2009 8:08:34 PM
Subject: [ARSCLIST] Subversive recordings
I recently preserved two sound mirror paper analogue tapes that were
accessioned into our collection a short while ago. The main audio of
historical interest has been recorded over in parts and this is where I need
There is a series of about six 78rpm recordings that have been put on to
these tapes. This is obvious due to the distinctive clicks and pops and
surface noise combined with this old paper tape stock. One recording
features Bill and Betty who are soon to be married.........it goes on from
there! They have American accents and I would place the date at being
around the early 1950's, but that is hard to pinpoint as there is no
documentation at all. I would describe this as an example of early
Another example is about changing the name of Arkansas. It features a male
voice with an American accent. The language used is colourful and would
probably still not be able to be played over the airwaves today.
And yet another recording features a male and female, with American accents
(they do sound like Bill and Betty!) and it is full of innuendos and very
suggestive lines. Some of the language in the remainder of the examples
includes words which would not be suitable for public broadcast.
Would any of you have any ideas about these recordings, where and how they
were made (eg. blackmarket, back alley studio), where they were sold, etc.
It is not that difficult to figure out who would buy them! Is anyone
familiar with 78 recordings such as these?