Gary Owens: The Voice of ‘Laugh-In’ Signs Off

When longtime Laugh-In announcer Gary Owens died Feb. 13, one of the great voices of the past century was stilled.

I was lucky enough to interview Gary in September 2009 about a new documentary featuring his friend Jonathan Winters. Instantly recognizable from his first “hello,” Gary took me on a roller coaster ride of rapid-fire anecdotes, drawing on his 60-some-odd years in show business. From hosting The Gong Show to buying a Quincy Jones album for 11-year-old Michael Jackson, it’s clear that Gary led a life and a half in his 80 years.

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Here’s an edited version of that telephone chat. We eventually did get around to talking about Jonathan Winters, but that’s another story....

 

Photo: NBC/Family of Gary Owens

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