Joe Bev did another fine job in bringing us rare Daws Butler. Features an interview with Yogi Bear, an pilot for an ABC radio show, and two songs--one called "Bingo Ringo" (given the popularity of the Beatles and Lorne Greene's single at the time, not a surprise) and a rocked up version of Oh My Darling Clementine, in his Huckleberry Hound voice. Daws was the Voice Magician we loved in so many cartoons and comedy bits (his work with Stan
Freberg, for example) and years later he worked with many aspiring voice artists. Fans of Daws, cartoons, Stan Freberg (a couple sketches will remind you of Stan's stuff), old time radio, etc. should enjoy this.
When Jim Henson's memorial service was held, Carroll Spinney dressed up as Big Bird and sang "Being Green", a song written by Joe Raposo for Kermit the Frog (Henson) to sing. He concludes it with "Thank you Kermit" and the audience knew what he meant.
Henson--and Joan Ganz Cooney, Raposo, Spinney and others--was a major part of the success of Sesame Street.
This interesting book traces the genesis of the show and has bios of the various figures involved. It does start off with Henson's funeral but that sets up the message that his life really mattered, and his friends would miss him. Yes there are sad moments here, people gone too soon, but also many happy moments and great achievements. Davis' tale covers it all and Spinney's voice is just perfect for it. (At the end, author Davis interviews Spinney--nice feature, but I must admit I'm glad the author didn't narrate the whole book.
Davis' voice is a bit gruff; Spinney's easier on the ears). Nice trivia and well written.
A bit under 3 hours, with clips from Joe Bevilacqua's radio series with interviews of cartoon figures (some are older and done by other people). Stan Freberg & Daws Butler (time for Beany); Mel Blanc; Hoyt Curtin (that great Hanna Barbera music, which we get quite a dose of), a cool KCRW session with Rocky & Bullwinkle's June Foray and Bill Scott (done apparently a yr or so before Bill passed in the mid 80s), etc. At the end is Daws as Huck doing what I think is a spoof of Lorne Greene's "Ringo" only in this case it's about the Beatles drummer of course. I would also recommend Joe Bev's audiobook of the Alan Reed story and his "rare Daws Butler" collection.
Michael Skakel predicted, "I can get away with murder; I'm a Kennedy". But he was convicted in 2002, a couple years after this book came out. Skakel, nephew of
RFK's wife Ethel Skakel Kennedy, was convicted of bludgeoning 15 year old Martha Moxley to death. Early suspicion fell on his brother Thomas, but the case went cold...
then "changed stories" by suspects and the involvement of Domenic Dunne and Fuhrman
(plus the William Kennedy Smith case) brought the mystery back into the public eye.
While this book ends before the conviction, Fuhrman makes a strong case for Skakel's guilt and a likely motive. Len Cariou's narration is good except for one error: I believe the last name of the family is pronounced "SKAY-kll", not "SKAH-kll". For those accusing Fuhrman of being on an ego trip, not so;
he does explain how he was brought into an examination of the case, though.
A lively tribute to the life of character actor and cartoon voice Alan Reed, spiced by background music and audio clips of radio/TV shows and movies. Most of it is read
by Alan Reed Jr. (whose father had died in 1977) but there are some bits spoken
by Reed himself from 1970s interviews. Joe Barbera is heard commenting on Alan's
work with The Flintstones (as Fred) and the creation of the series. Bill Marx narrates
some letters Fred Allen wrote to Reed.
Teddy Bergman, later to become Alan Reed, was determined to be a stage actor, including
a job in Oklahoma City and a dramatic academy. He found his way into what we now call old time radio (comedy/drama) and there are many clips of hilarious or dramatic
moments from Baby Snooks, The Shadow, Fred Allen (where he did the Falstaff
character), The Mel Blanc Show (an early partnership, years before they played
Fred and Barney). Movie clips, too, and it's amazing to hear all the parts Alan played
over the years. Joe Bevilacqua, who turns up doing some narration, puts in backing
music and various clips which make this a nostalgia trip into the Golden Age of
Radio. I really enjoyed all the clips, the inside info, and the journey into the life of
a skillful character actor--the man who decided the best way to express
Fred Flintstone's exuberance at life was to shout out, "Yabba Dabba Doo!"
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