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Bob and Ray
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    Bob Elliott (March 26, 1923-February 2, 2016), born in Boston, Massachusetts
    Ray Goulding (March 20, 1922-March 24, 1990), born in Lowell, Massachusetts
    Hosted various radio shows on NBC, CBS, Mutual Broadcasting and NPR (1946-87)
    Hosted the TV shows ‘Bob and Ray’ (1951-53) and ‘The Name’s the Same’ (1955)
    Wrote the children’s book ‘Linda Lovely and the Fleebus’ (1960)
    Appeared on Broadway in ‘The Two and Only’ (1970)
    Inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame (1995)
    They explained that Bob was billed first because their first radio show was called ‘Matinee with Bob and Ray,’ whereas if ‘matinob’ had been a word they would have been called Ray and Bob.
    They mocked commercials while simultaneously lending their voices to beer pitchmen Bert and Harry Piels.
    During their short-lived radio game show ‘Pick and Play with Bob and Ray’ (1954-55), they were sometimes booed by a studio audience not familiar with their deadpan style of humor.
    Unlike many comedy teams, they took turns playing straight man in their sketches.
    As regulars on NBC Radio’s ‘Monitor,’ they were often called on to improvise on short notice when the program’s planned segments ran into technical problems.
    Some of their radio sketches were adapted into graphic story form for ‘Mad’ magazine.
    They parodied Senator Joe McCarthy as blowhard Commissioner Carstairs in their soap opera spoof ‘Mary Backstayge.’
    Ray said, ‘We’ve spent all these years trying to entertain each other. And that’s a good way to earn a living.’
    ’Raised on Radio’ noted that they never turned ‘angry, cruel, snide, bitter, or self-satisfied. They didn’t bludgeon their targets to death; they kidded human folly and bombast without feeling a need to destroy their objects.’

Credit: C. Fishel

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