On June 27, we celebrated the Diefenbunker’s 25th anniversary! In honour of this milestone, we continue to highlight 25 artifacts from within our collections. This week, we are featuring two vinyl records from the North American Air Defense Command (NORAD).

Music from NORAD vinyl record from the Diefenbunker's collections.

Music from NORAD, Diefenbunker Museum: 2002.008.004.B

Established in 1957 during the Cold War, NORAD was a combined organization of the United States and Canada that provided aerospace monitoring, warning, and protection — including the detection and warning of impending attacks — for Canada and the continental United States. This was a joint command in response to the threat of Soviet air attack which subsequently prompted North America to integrate their air-defense forces. 

A musical group representing NORAD came together in 1959, composed of members from both the United States and Canadian Military. The band consisted of professional musicians selected from the United States Army, Navy, and Air Force, as well as from the Royal Canadian Air Force. This group of musicians were sponsored and operated as a touring band who primarily covered musical genres such as jazz, pop, and brass.

Both Cold War era vinyl records are solid black with a white and blue circular label in the center. Curved around the white outer edge of the labels, written in red, is the title “Music from NORAD.” Listed in the lower half of each of the records’ labels is the soundtrack list. These vinyls come in a dual-sided paper cover. The front covers depict unique colourful imagery and they both have text that reads “Music from NORAD.” The back covers each include a song list, band history, and a black and white group photo centred on the lower half of the cover.

Music from NORAD, Diefenbunker Museum: 2002.008.005.A

Music from NORAD can still be heard online today. This band played the crucial role of representing four military organizations that were composed of men and women who worked around the clock to ensure that no aggressor made its way into the air space of North America during the Cold War.


Stay tuned as we continue to celebrate our 25th anniversary by uncovering stories from our museum’s collections.

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