Archive for the ‘daws butler’ Category

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

Animation: Ruff And Reddy

Ruff n Reddy

In 1957, MGM shut down their animation department, but Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera were prepared. They immediately went into production on a low budget cartoon series designed for television. It was the seed that went on to grow into a television empire, yet the series hasn’t been distributed in years and few kids today know Ruff and Reddy the way they know other Hanna-Barbera creations like Yogi Bear and Fred Flintstone.

Ruff n ReddyRuff n ReddyHanna and Barbera knew that they had to make Ruff and Reddy quickly and cheaply. Within the space of a few months, their first airdate on NBC loomed. The tight budget and quick turnaround didn’t allow for much animation. The focus was put on the voices, layout and background styling. They designed the episodes as sequential cliffhangers- similar to the serials that played movie theaters in the thirties and forties. (The basic structure of the series was the same as the earlier TV cartoon series, Crusader Rabbit.)

The cartoons were designed to plug into a live action puppet show hosted by Jimmy Blaine, known for his characters Rubarb the Parrot and Jose the Toucan. Ruff and Reddy ended production in 1960. It continued in reruns on NBC in the Captain Bob Cottle show until 1964. After that, it was syndicated to local kiddie shows around the country.

Jimmi Blaine

The two key voice actors who worked on Ruff and Reddy went on to become the core cast members of the Hanna Barbera team throughout the coming years… Don Messick and Daws Butler.

Ruff n ReddyRuff n ReddyDaws Butler was well established as a voice actor by the time Hanna and Barbera formed their TV studio. He had been an integral part of Bob Clampett’s Time For Beany, as well as providing voices for many Lantz and MGM cartoons. Butler was skilled at ad libbing and vocal impressions, which led to an association with Stan Freberg on Freberg’s popular comedy records like "St. George and the Dragon-Net&quot.

Through the late forties and early fifties, Don Messick was a ventriloquist. In the late fifties, Tex Avery was looking for a voice for Droopy to replace Bill Thompson, who had left MGM to work for Disney. Daws Butler, who had been recording for Avery for some time, suggested his friend Messick for the job. As performers, Messick and Butler were perfectly matched. They became a team in a long string of cartoons produced by Hanna-Barbera… Boo Boo and Yogi, Pixie and Dixie, etc.

Ruff n ReddyRuff n ReddyAs a cartoon, Ruff and Reddy really doesn’t stand up too well. The stories are directionless, the animation is almost non-existent and the cartoons are excessively talky with way too much narration. They really aren’t a very good model for animators today to follow… except in one respect. Ruff and Reddy had remarkable design, layout and background styling. It set the standard for the great Hanna Barbera series that followed. I don’t know the names of the entire crew that worked on these early cartoons, but a few key artists stand out.

No one is more responsible for the look of the early Hanna-Barbera series than Ed Benedict. Benedict began his career at Disney and Lantz in the 1930s. In 1952, he joined Tex Avery at MGM to design the modernist cartoons, Field And Scream, The First Bad Man, Deputy Droopy and Cellbound. Benedict was one of the first artists hired by Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera to work on their television cartoons. He was the principle designer on Ruff and Reddy, Huckleberry Hound, Yogi Bear, Quick Draw McGraw and The Flintstones. Ed passed away last year. Read John K’s tribute on his blog, "All Kinds of Stuff".

Ruff n ReddyRuff n ReddyDick Bickenbach was a skilled draftsman with a strong sense of composition. He animated at Lantz, Warner Bros and MGM before joining Bill and Joe at their TV studio.
Because of his tight construction and clean line, his drawings were often used as models. In addition to design and layout duties on The Flintstones and Yogi Bear, he drew the comic book adaptations as well.

Art Lozzi was one of H-B’s main background painters. His use of color and texture in this particular cartoon is remarkable. John K has been interviewing Lozzi on his blog, "All Kinds of Stuff" See the following posts… Good Color Without A Lot of Money, Art Lozzi’s Technique on Skooter Looter and Art Lozzi on the Early Days of H-B

Carlo Vinci doesn’t have as much to do on Ruff and Reddy as he did on later H-B series like Huckleberry Hound and The Flintstones, but his hand is still evident in the animation. Vinci worked at Terry-Toons in New York for twenty years before moving west at the request of Joe Barbera. He was one of the first artists hired to work for the new TV studio, and he remained with H-B for twenty years.

RUFF AND REDDY MEET
PINKY THE PINT SIZED PACHYDERM

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE ONE: Pinky The Pint Sized Pachyderm (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE TWO: Last Trip Of A Ghost Ship (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE THREE: The Irate Pirate (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE FOUR: Dynamite Fright (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE FIVE: Marooned In Typhoon Lagoon (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE SIX: Scarey Harry Safari (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE SEVEN: Jungle Jitters (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE EIGHT: Bungle In The Jungle (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE NINE: Miles Of Crocodiles (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE TEN: A Creep In The Deep (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE ELEVEN: Hot Shot’s Plot (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE TWELVE: The Gloom Of Doom (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy EPISODE THIRTEEN: The Trapped Trap The Trapper (Hanna-Barbera/1958) (Quicktime 7 / 9 megs)

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Ruff and Reddy

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

Animated CartoonsAnimated Cartoons

This posting is part of the online Encyclopedia of Cartooning under the subject heading, Animation.

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

Voice Acting: The Stan Freberg Show 1957

Voice Actors Daws Butler and Stan Freberg

Daws Butler and Stan Freberg accept the
Emmy Award for "Time For Beany".

Animation Resources supporter, Rich Borowy has been contributing some wonderful material to our digital database. Here’s another one of his treasures… the premiere episode of the legendary short lived radio musical variety show created by Stan Freberg.

Voice Actor Stan FrebergVoice Actor Stan FrebergIn the Summer of 1957, CBS debuted a comedy program to replace The Jack Benny Program. It starred Captiol recording artist Stan Freberg, with support from veteran voice artists like Daws Butler, Marvin Miller and June Foray. The show exhibited all aspects of Freberg’s unique sense of humor from goofy cartooniness to biting satire. This episode contains liberal doses of both, and includes his classic riff on Cold War politics, titled "Los Voraces" ("The Greedy Ones"). Freberg’s sharp wit and his refusal to accept commercials for cigarettes didn’t endear him to advertisers, and the show was cancelled after only fifteen episodes. But it made an indelible mark on many fans in re-release on records.

Voice Actor Stan FrebergVoice Actor Stan FrebergThis particular recording is unique, because it includes off-air introductions by Stan before the show and a pickup of a musical cue at the end. It’s a tribute to the professionalism of the performers and the musical director, Billy May when you realize that this elaborate program was performed live from beginning to end in front of a studio audience.

Enjoy the genius of Freberg!

The Stan Freberg Show
(CBS Radio/July 9th, 1957)

(AAC Audio File / 90kbps-44.1kHz / Mono / 42 minutes / 30.25 mb)

Thanks for contributing this, Rich!

Fans of the great Stan Freberg won’t want to be without this great four CD box set, The Tip of the Freberg, which includes many of his greatest recordings. Get it at Amazon!

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

Animated CartoonsAnimated Cartoons

This posting is part of the online Encyclopedia of Cartooning under the subject heading, Animation.

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

Biography: Daws Butler

This posting is a stub. You can contribute to this entry by providing information through the comments link at the bottom of this post. Please organize your information following the main category headers below….

Birth/Death

Birth: November 16, 1916 in Toledo, Ohio

Death: May 18, 1988

Occupation/Title

Voice Actor, Writer, Record director.

Bio Summary

Charles Dawson “Daws” Butler, grew up in a suburb of Chicago, and originally wanted to be a cartoonist. He began his career in show business during the Depression, winning amateur contests at neighborhood theaters by doing impressions of Franklin D. Roosevelt, Rudy Vallee, and a Model T Ford. He teamed with two other young men to form an act called “The Three Short Waves”; they did impressions of radio personalities. The act played night clubs and supper clubs throughout the Midwest. After service in the Naval Reserve during World War II, Butler moved to California and picked up radio parts on such network broadcasts as “Suspense” and “The Whistler” before spending five years teamed with Stan Freberg doing voices, handling puppets and writing for Bob Clampett’s “Time for Beany” daily live television series.

He also co-wrote and voiced many of Stan Freberg’s greatest comedy records. He went on to write and voice countless television and radio commercials and voice now-classic characters for Tex Avery, Hanna-Barbera, Walter Lantz, Jay Ward and others. The successful characters he voiced are staggering in number: Yogi Bear, Huckleberry Hound, Quick Draw McGraw, Baba Looey, Mr. Jinx, Dixie, Super Snooper, Blabbermouse, Augie Doggie, Snagglepuss, Hokey Wolf, Fibber Fox, Loop de Loop, Wally Gator, Lippy Lion, Peter Potamus, Chilly Willy, Elroy Jetson, Mr. Cogswell, Henry Orbit, Cap’n Crunch, Hair Bear, and on and on…

Early Life/Family

He grew up winning locale contests doing impressions of famous people in popular culture. This act he had with a couple of others played night clubs and they began to build a base for what was to be his career. He had spent two years in the Navy where he met his wife Myrtis Martin, a native to Albemarle North Carolina. After his service he moved to California where he picked up radio jobs, he later moved onto a daily live television series.

“I never really thought of it as doing voices. When I was a kid, when I was in high school, I was very shy, very inhibited, withdrawn. And I was sort of a playground clown. I was a funny guy for the guys. Afraid of the girls. But they looked at me as being somewhat of a comic and I was doing little impersonations. I wasn’t even aware of the fact that I was doing impersonations. I was just taking off people who were very prominent on radio and the guys got a kick out of it and laughed and it alleviated some of my shyness. But it didn’t help me when I was in school because I was really too embarrassed to get up and give aural recitations and I lost a lot of credits that way. So I sort of just stumbled into acting or doing voices I think to get the attention of my peers. I was short. I was at that time probably very aware of my size. I haven’t been since I broke through… through my talents but I like to write and I was very good. That was my first love really, writing and drawing, doing cartoons. I wanted to be a cartoonist when I grew up. And I was writing poetry and funny little sketches when I was in grammar school. The acting came much later.”

He had spent two years in the Navy where he met his wife Myrtis Martin, a native to Albemarle North Carolina. After his service he moved to California where he picked up radio jobs, he later moved onto a daily live television series.

Education/Training

Career Outline

Daws’ big break came between 1946 and 1947 as he went to see Warner Brothers Production manager Johnny Burton, in his office on Sunset Boulevard. Daws auditioned right in front of him, at his desk, and did about 25 different voices, every dialect and character he could think of. Johnny Burton seemed impressed, but Mel Blanc was doing all the voices for Warner Bros. Cartoons, so Burton sent Daws to Tex Avery at MGM. With Tex sitting in a studio theatre, Daws stood in a control room and talked into a microphone for forty minutes, again doing every voice he could think of-Scotch, Irish, cockney, Russian, Polish, Souther, old men, little kids, etc. Tex was impressed and the next morning he got a call for a cartoon. Daws got his membership with the Screen Actors guild and went to his first cartoon job on a big recording stage at MGM.

Tex Avery hired Butler to provide narration work for several of his cartoons. In many cartoons, there was a nameless wolf who spoke in a southern accent and whistled all the time. Butler provided the voice for this wolf. While at MGM, Avery wanted Butler to try to do the voice of Droopy Dog, a character that Bill Thompson regularly voiced. Butler performed the voice for a few cartoons, but he then told Avery about Don Messick, another voice actor and Butler’s life-long friend. Messick quickly became a voice actor.

In 1949, Butler landed a role in a televised puppet show created by former Warner Brothers cartoon director Bob Clampett called Time for Beany. 33-year-old Butler was teamed up with 23-year-old Stan Freberg, and together they did all the voices of the puppets. Butler voiced Beany Boy and Captain Huffenpuff. Freberg voiced Cecil and Dishonest John. An entire stable of recurring characters were seen. The show’s writers were Charles Shows and Lloyd Turner, whose dependably funny dialog was still always at the mercy of Butler’s and Freberg’s ad libs. Time for Beany ran from 1949 to 1954 and won several Emmy Awards. It was the basis for the cartoon Beany and Cecil.

Butler briefly turned his attention to TV commercials, although he quickly moved to providing the voice to many nameless Walter Lantz characters for theatrical shorts later seen on the Woody Woodpecker program. His notable character was the penguin “Chilly Willy” and his sidekick, the southern-speaking dog Smedley (the same voice used for Tex Avery’s laid-back wolf character).

Also in the 1950s, Stan Freberg asked Butler to help him write comedy skits for his Capitol Records albums. Their first collaboration, “St. George and the Dragon-Net” (based on Dragnet), was the first comedy record to sell over one million copies. Freberg was more of a satirist who did song parodies, but the bulk of his “talking” routines were co-written by, and co-starred, Daws Butler. Butler also teamed up again with Freberg and cartoon actress June Foray in a short-lived network radio series, The Stan Freberg Show, which ran from July to October, 1957 on the CBS Radio Network.

When Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera left MGM they called Daws Butler and Don Messick to join them because they were “thinking, inventive actors” to work on Ruff and Reddy, which were 3.5 to 4 minute cartoons that were to be interspersed with old Columbia Cartoons. Bill and Joe wanted to start making their own TV cartoons, so they came up with the idea of Huckleberry Hound based on Daws southern voice, which they were fond of. These cartoons set the formula for the rest of the series of cartoons that the two would helm until the mid 1960s.

When Mel Blanc was recovering from a motor vehicle accident, Butler stepped in to provide the voice of Barney Rubble (another rather Carney-esque voice) in four episodes of Flintstones. Butler remained somewhat low-key in the 1970s and 1980s, until a 1985 revival of The Jetsons. In 1975, Butler began an acting workshop that spawned such talents as Nancy Cartwright (The Simpsons), Corey Burton (Old Navy, Disney), and Joe Bevilacqua (NPR).

Daws Butler died of a heart attack on May 18, 1988 at age 71. Daws Butler is interred in Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City, California. Many of his roles were assumed by Greg Burson, who had personally studied with Butler for years.

Before his death Daws also began a friendship over the mail with Nancy Cartwright, who would go on to a successful career as a voiceover artist, best known as the voice of Bart Simpson on The Simpsons. In her autobiography Cartwright cites Butler as being her mentor and the greatest influence on her life.

In the year of his death, The Good, the Bad, and Huckleberry Hound was released, a tour-de-force featuring most of his classic early characters.

Comments On Style

Influences

Butler based some of his voices on popular celebrities of the day. Yogi Bear began as an Art Carney impression; Butler had done a similar voice in several of Robert McKimson’s films at Warner Brothers and Stan Freberg’s comedy record “The Honey-Earthers.” However, Butler soon changed Yogi’s voice, making it much deeper and more sing-songy, thus making it a more original voice. Hokey Wolf began as an impression of Phil Silvers, and Snagglepuss as Bert Lahr. Again, Butler redesigned these voices, making them his own inventions. Huckleberry Hound was inspired many years earlier, in 1945, by the North Carolina neighbor of Daws’s wife’s family, and he had in fact been using that voice for a long time, for Avery’s laid-back wolf and Lantz’s Smedley.

Quote:
“An Art Carney dog I had done a couple of times for Bill and Joe became Yogi Bear; of course, I went far beyond Art Carney- the extended vowels, the expansiveness, exuberance, diaphragm control, ebullience, and the bigness, the massiveness of a bear. “

Personality

Anecdotes

Miscellaneous

Filmography

Honors

Annie Award: Winsor McCay Award 1984

Related Links

In his own words, Daws Discusses his career and voice acting:
Official Site: www.dawsbutler.com

Stan Freberg’s box-set, Tip of the Freberg (Rhino Entertainment, 1999) chronicles every aspect of Freberg’s career except the cartoon voice-over work, and it showcases his career with Daws Butler.

Bibliographic References

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daws_Butler

http://www.dawsbutler.com/

www.tvparty.com/vaultdaws.html

Contributors To This Listing

Josh Heisie
cesar2c

To make additions or corrections to this listing, please click on COMMENTS below…