Recordings made by
Basil Rathbone

hrecord.gif (52092 bytes)

Basil Rathbone's distinctive voice and clear diction made him a popular narrator of stories, poems, and other "spoken word" recordings. I am attempting to list here all the records which Basil Rathbone made during his lifetime. Records have been made of some of the radio programs, especially many of the Sherlock Holmes radio broadcasts,* but I do not include them here because they were radio programs and are listed on the page of Rathbone's appearances on radio. Some readers may remember that I had the record "Aladdin" listed here. I decided to remove it after having listened to the soundtrack of the Cole Porter musical, which aired on CBS Television in 1958. Basil Rathbone played the part of the Emperor in the musical and the Emperor has one song on the soundtrack, but George Hall sings the song instead of Basil Rathbone. So, although Basil Rathbone's name is on the cover of the record, his voice is not to be heard anywhere on it. Therefore I removed "Aladdin" from this list of Basil Rathbone's recordings.

Look for the sound button to find sound clips from some of Rathbone's recordings. More will be added in the future.

* Audiocassette tapes of many of the Sherlock Holmes radio broadcasts starring Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce can be ordered online at

hrecord.gif (52092 bytes)hrecord.gif (52092 bytes)hrecord.gif (52092 bytes)hrecord.gif (52092 bytes)hrecord.gif (52092 bytes)

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Five (5) record set, 16 rpm, Audio Books GL-611, 1958. Basil Rathbone reads "A Scandal in Bohemia," "The Red-Headed League," "The Adventure of the Speckled Band," and "The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle." Complete and unabridged readings. (More Sherlock Holmes records are listed on page 3 under "Stories of Sherlock Holmes.") To the right is a two-minute clip from "The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle."

The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle
(4.35 MB)

Basil Rathbone Presenting, in conjunction with the consort Players, a program of Elizabethan poetry and music in the Coolidge Auditorium, Nov. 29-30, 1962 (sound recording), LWO 3891, recorded in 1962. Basil Rathbone, reader; Helen Boatwright, soprano; Robert White, tenor; the Consort Players (6 musicians performing on period instruments); Sydney Beck, director and musical arranger. Program includes the spoken and sung texts.

Basil Rathbone Reading in the Coolidge Auditorium, March 23, 1952 (sound recording), LWO 1961, recorded in 1952. Basil Rathbone reads selections from the works of Aubrey Beardsely, Francis Thompson, Robert Louis Stevenson, Rupert Brooke, John Keats, Oscar Wilde, Percy Bysshe Shelley, A.E. Housman, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Robert Browning, William Shakespeare, and Stephen Vincent Benét, as well as from the Bible.

A Christmas Carol, a dramatic version starring Basil Rathbone as Scrooge.  - 3 record set, 78-rpm, Columbia Records M-521 
Cast includes: Harlow Wilcox (Narrator), Elliot Lewis (Fred), Jay Novello (Bob Cratchet), Arthur O. Bryan (Portly Man/First Man), Raymond Lawrence (Marley's Ghost/Undertaker's Man), Francis X. Bushman (Ghost of Christmas Past), Stuart Robertson (Ghost of Christmas Present/2nd Man), Paula Winslowe (Mrs. Cratchet/ Charwoman), Dix Davis (Peter Cratchet), Lurene Tuttle (Martha Cratchet), Tommy Cook (Tiny Tim), Walter Tetley (Boy).

A Christmas Carol, narrated by Basil Rathbone, with carols by the Lyn Murray singers - 33-rpm record, Harmony Columbia HL9523. Click on the links below to hear sound clips from this album.

Christmas Carol 1
(32 KB)

Christmas Carol 2
(50 KB)

Christmas Carol 3
(168 KB)

Christmas Carol 4
(251 KB)

A Christmas Carol

The Christmas Story in Carols

The Christmas Story in Carols, with Scripture read by Basil Rathbone. 33 rpm record, Westminster Hi-Fi Records WP-6034, 1956. Below are a few selected tracks of Basil Rathbone reading Scripture.

Luke 1:26-33,38
(2.58 MB)

Matthew 1:18-23
(2.33 MB)

Luke 2:1,3-7
(1.70 MB)

Luke 2:8-12
(1.45 MB)

Matthew 2:1-5,8-10
(2.45 MB)

Matthew 2:11
(881 KB)

Co-Star: The Brothers Karamazov - The Record Acting Game: You Act Scenes Opposite Basil Rathbone in scenes from The Brothers Karamazov, Co-Star Records, Inc. CS-107. (Script is included with record so that the listener can read along. Rathbone acts out one part, and then pauses for the listener to read his or her part.)

Co-Star Scene 1
(121 KB)

Co-Star Scene 3
(68 KB)

Co-Star Scene 5
(119 KB)

Co-Star Scene 7
(374 KB)



Dinosaurs 1
(132 KB)

Dinosaurs 2
(118 KB)

Dinosaurs 3
(119 KB)

Dinosaurs! - A dramatic version of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's "The Lost World," featuring Basil Rathbone as Professor Challenger, MGM's Leo the Lion Records CH-1016

Edgar Allan Poe, Poems and Tales, Vol. 1 - Caedmon TC 1028 (Basil Rathbone reads The Raven, Annabel Lee, Eldorado, To -- --, The Masque of the Red Death, Alone, The City in the Sea, The Black Cat.)

Edgar Allan Poe, Vol. 2 - Caedmon TC 1115 (Basil Rathbone reads The Cask of Amontillado, The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar, The Pit and the Pendulum.)

Edgar Allan Poe, Vol. 3 - Caedmon TC 1195 (Basil Rathbone reads The Telltale Heart, The Fall of the House of Usher, The Bells, The Haunted Palace.)

Edgar Allan Poe, Vol. 1

Edgar Allan Poe, Vol. 2

Edgar Allan Poe, Vol. 3

The Raven
read by Basil Rathbone (7.88 MB)

The Cask of Amontillado
read by Basil Rathbone (14.3 MB)

The Bells
read by Basil Rathbone (3.77 MB)


Edgar Allan Poe Soundbook - Caedmon Soundbook SBC 106. Rathbone reads The Raven, The Masque of the Red Death, The Pit and the Pendulum, The Telltale Heart, and The Fall of the House of Usher. Also included is a reading by Vincent Price of The Gold Bug.

The Final Problem (Sherlock Holmes story read by Basil Rathbone): recorded in 1958 by Audio Book Company Records (USA), and again in 1963 by Caedmon Records (TC 1172).

Great Themes in Poetry - Poetry Album II (6 records, 78 rpm, Columbia 36481-36486, Set E11). Volume III of the Masterpieces of Literature series, recorded under the auspices of the Committee for the National Council of the Teachers of English. Themes explored are Romance, Escape, Death, Faith, Indignation, Friendship, Love, Joy of Life, and more.
Hear Basil Rathbone read the poem "Invictus" by William Ernest Henley:

Guided Tours of the World: Hong Kong. Book with slides, and record narrated by Basil Rathbone. Part of the "Panorama Colorslide Travel Program" produced by Columbia Record Club, 1962.

india.jpg (4376 bytes)
Click to hear a sound clip from the Guided Tour of India
(152 KB)

Guided Tours of the World: India. Book with slides, and record narrated by Basil Rathbone. Part of the "Panorama Colorslide Travel Program" produced by Columbia Record Club, 1962.

Hansel & Gretel - Basil Rathbone & Jane Powell, adapted by Ralph Rose (4 record set, 78 rpm, Columbia Masterworks ML2055, recorded in 1946). Single record, 33.3 rpm, recorded in 1949. Cast: Basil Rathbone - Narrator, Witch; Jane Powell - Gretel; Ted Donaldson - Hansel; Lurene Tuttle - Mother, Sandman; Frank Graham - Father; Rece Saxon - singing voice of Hansel. Orchestra conducted by Carmen Dragon.



hrecord.gif (52092 bytes)hrecord.gif (52092 bytes)hrecord.gif (52092 bytes)hrecord.gif (52092 bytes)hrecord.gif (52092 bytes)

More Recordings by Basil Rathbone on Pages Two and Three!



click to go to top of page
Top of

Site Map

All original content is © Marcia Jessen, 2013