Ed Herlihy

Show Count: 36
Series Count: 7
Role: Old Time Radio Star
Old Time Radio
Born: August 14, 1909, Boston, Massachusetts
Died: January 30, 1999, New York City

Edward Joseph "Ed" Herlihy (August 14, 1909 – January 30, 1999) was an American newsreel narrator for Universal-International. He also was a long-time radio and television announcer for NBC, hosting The Horn and Hardart Children's Hour in the 1940s and 1950, and was briefly interim announcer on The Tonight Show in 1962. He was also the voice of Kraft Foods radio and TV commercials from the 1940s through the early 1980s. When he died in 1999, his New York Times obituary said he was "A Voice of Cheer and Cheese".

Radio and television 

Educated at Boston College, graduating in 1932, he gained his first radio job in his hometown, at Boston's WLOE. When he was hired by NBC in 1935, he decamped for New York, along with his friend, fellow Boston announcer Frank Gallop, who was hired by CBS. In their early days as network announcers, Herlihy and Gallop shared an apartment on West 45th Street. He was immediately successful in network radio, at that time in its sharpest ascendancy. He was the announcer for many radio shows from the 1930s, to the 1950s, among them: America's Town Meeting, The Big Show, The Falcon, Mr. District Attorney, and Just Plain Bill. Herlihy became the host of the The Horn and Hardart Children's Hour on radio in 1948, remaining its announcer when the show went to television. He continued his success in the new medium: his early television credits included Sid Caesar's hit Your Show of Shows and soap operas As the World Turns and All My Children. He was also the host of Recollections At 30, which was a special NBC Radio series created for the network's 30th birthday.

Kraft Foods 

In 1947 Herlihy began his long association with Kraft Foods on radio and continued it when the company sponsored the Kraft Television Theater on television in the 1950s. Richard Severo writes in his obituary of Herlihy that the show — and Herlihy's talent — suited Kraft well:

"A dramatic offering, all of it done live, the show featured everything from Shakespeare to Rod Serling; it was at the center of what critics would come to call television's Golden Age. During commercials for Kraft products (Good food and good food ideas, Mr. Herlihy would say), audiences heard only his voice, a voice he said he tried to make sound friendly. It was an avuncular, next-door-neighbor, deep, mellow kind of voice, a digestive guide through the preparation of all manner of souffles, dips, marshmallow salads and fondues. He was noted for his ability to ad lib through commercials when dramatic presentations ran too long or too short."

Herlihy's role as Kraft spokesman lasted nearly 40 years, his voice becoming as familiar as a next-door neighbor's. From his New York Timesobituary: "He liked to recall a summer day in Times Square when he helped a blind man to cross at 44th Street. He took the man's arm, and the man said it was a beautiful day. "Yes," Herlihy replied, "this is the kind of day the Lord made for the good guys." The blind man replied: "I know you. You're the cheese man on TV.""

In his capacity with Kraft, Severo writes, Herlihy "introduced Cheez Whiz, offered innumerable entreaties to buy Velveeta and delivered eloquent apologias for the entombment of almost anything edible with Miracle Whip."

Newsreel narration 

For Universal Newsreels in the 1940s, Herlihy narrated editions describing the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the Allies' early setbacks against the Axis powers, the turning of the tide of WWII, the death of President Roosevelt, and the detonation of the first atomic bombs. In the next decade, during the Cold War, he narrated the very first American newsreel on the launch of Sputnik.

Films and stage 

When he worked for Sid Caesar in the 1950s, Herlihy met Woody Allen, then a fledgling writer. Allen was so impressed with Herlihy's voice that he used him in several of his films in the 1980s, including Hannah and Her Sisters, Radio Days and Zelig; his other film credits included Martin Scorsese's The King of Comedy and Tim Burton's Pee-wee's Big Adventure.

He also appeared in road company stage productions outside New York City, including Camelot, Good News and Damn Yankees. He was inWatergate: The Musical, in Atlanta in 1982; Herlihy played Senator Sam Ervin, a role for which he spent $40 for a pair of bushy eyebrows, only to find that they would not move up and down.

Later life 

Herlihy made his last TV appearance on a PBS tribute N.Y.TV: By The People Who Made It in 1999. He was married for many years to his wife, Fredi; they had two daughters, two sons, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Ed Herlihy died of natural causes in New York City, at age 89. The Herlihy family is one of the supporters of the Lillian Booth Actors Home in Englewood, New Jersey; the foyer, with its oil portrait of Herlihy, is named in his memory.

Source: Wikipedia

Dick TracyDick Tracy
Show Count: 54
Broadcast History: 4 February 1935 to 11 July 1935, 30 September 1935 to 24 March 1937, 3 January 1938 to 30 September 1939, and 15 March 1943 to 16 July 1948
Sponsor: Sterling Products, Quaker Oats, Tootsie Rolls
Cast: Bob Burlen, Barry Thomson, Ned Wever, Matt Crowley, Walter Kinsella , Jackie Kelk, Andy Donnelly, Helen Lewis
Director: Mitchell Grayson, Charles Powers, Bob White
Falcon, TheFalcon, The
Show Count: 92
Broadcast History: 10 April 1943 to 29 December 1943, 3 July 1945 to 30 April 1950, 7 May 1950 to 14 September 1952 and 5 January 1953 to 27 November 1954
Cast: Berry Kroeger, James Meighan, Les Tremayne, Les Damon, George Petrie, Charles Webster
Director: Stuart Buchanan, Richard Lewis, Carlo De Angelo
Producer: Bernard L Schubert
The Falcon was a very popular and highly successful series enjoying a long run from 1943 until 1954. Its eleven-year run was full of mysteries and thrills with listeners tuning in each week to find out how The Falcon would solve the next problem and face the criminals.
Henry Morgan Show TheHenry Morgan Show The
Show Count: 24
Broadcast History: 28 October 1940 to 25 January 1943, 8 October 1945 to 16 July 1946, 3 September 1946 to 24 June 1948, 13 March 1949 to 16 June 1950, and 6 February 1950 to 23 June 1950
Cast: Henry Morgan, Arnold Stang, Art Carney, Florence Halop, Madeline Lee, Kenny Delmar
Director: Kenneth MacGregor, Charles Powers
Host: Henry Morgan
Henry Morgan's radio career began as a page at New York station WMCA in 1932, after which he held a number of obscure radio jobs, including announcing. He strenuously objected to the professional name "Morgan". What was wrong with his own name, Henry van Ost, Jr.? he asked. Too exotic, too unpronounceable, he was told. "What about the successful announcers Harry von Zell or Westbrook Van Voorhis?" he countered. But it was no use, and the bosses finally told Henry he could take the job or leave it. Thus began a long history of Henry's having arguments with executives.
Information, PleaseInformation, Please
Show Count: 226
Broadcast History: 17 May 1938 to 25 June 1948
Cast: Clifton Fadiman, Oscar Levant, Bernard Jaffe, Dr Harry Overstreet, Marcus Duffield, John Kieran, Franklin P Adams
Director: Dan Golenpaul
Producer: Dan Golenpaul
Broadcast: September 5, 1956
Added: Sep 15 2022
Broadcast: July 30, 1950
Added: Jul 20 2019
Broadcast: June 20, 1956
Starring: Ed Herlihy
Added: Sep 18 2022
Broadcast: April 3, 1957
Added: Apr 07 2024