I grew up in Pacific Palisades, California and after I turned 4 years old became one of those annoying kids who was bound and determined to get into show business. I was neighbors with actor Peter Graves whom I idolized. His daughter and I are the same age and went to kindergarten together. When I finally got up the courage to ask him how he became an actor, he said, “Well, Barry, I just thought about it. “After about a week of thinking about it, I put all my energy into convincing my parents to let me get an acting coach. It took a few years, but they finally gave in and at the age of 11, I thanked them by changing my name from Barry William Blenkhorn to Barry Williams.
Just six months later, I landed my first genuine role in one of those dull English class films called “Why Johnny Can Read.” Before long, I had an agent and parts in TV commercials and shows like “Run for Your Life” and “Mission: Impossible.”
Of course, you’re probably here because of a little TV show I was on called “The Brady Bunch. “Somewhere in those five great years, the series took on a life of its own and never stopped. We recorded four record albums, went on concert tours, hosted a variety show and then got back together for several TV reunions. We even had our own cartoon show.There’s a lot more, and you can read about it in my bestselling autobiography “Growing Up Brady,” which I later Produced into a made for TV movie for NBC.
After the series ended, I started performing concerts of my own and took up musical theatre with roles in “Pippin,” “West Side Story,” “The Sound of Music” and lots more. I continued to make appearances in front of the camera on shows like “Three’s Company,” “Highway to Heaven” and a stint on the daytime soap “General Hospital.” More recently, I was a regular on the teen series “S Club 7 in Hollywood. “Eventually, I even got to wear the “suit” AND sing how I want to sing on my own solo album “The Return of Johnny Bravo” and the rap single “The Real Greg Brady.”
These days, I’m still busy performing on stage, spinning groovy 70s hits on Sirius Satellite Radio, and if that’s not enough…I’m blogging!
Looking for more? There’s a good chance I have touched on it in the archive below…
Q: [by ScottKeithLA] Barry, Every year at this time I pull out my Christmas with the Brady Bunch CD to get me into the holiday mood. Do you ever listen to this? Any special memories? Merry Christmas.
A: There are two songs I like on the Brady Christmas album. Frosty the Snowman and Silver Bells.
Q: [by pjs2020] Barry, The Mod Squad containing the episode you were in is about to be released on DVD and I was wondering if you buy the DVD’s of the shows you were in? Do you collect them for your library and rewatch them or do you not really care?
A: Yes, I buy them and I am glad you told me about the Mod Squad. Doing that episode is one of the reasons I got the role of Greg Brady. Both shows filmed at Paramount along with Gomer Pyle and That Girl which I also appeared in.
Q: [by email@example.com] What music artists do you think are overrated?underrated?
A: Appreciation of music and artists is so subjective I can't rate them. I find that overrated artists just go away on their own as they cannot sustain support. Long live the Brady Bunch Kids.
Q: [by stewierules] Hi Barry–I was surfing on Ebay lately and had a couple of questions:
A: 1. There are some items that the entire cast signed. You would be wise to check the date as Robert Reed passed away in 1992. Anything signed with his name after that would not be authentic.
2. I am not a collector. But I have a lot of photos from the show.
Q: [by owlbay] I saw Growing Up 70s tonight and really had a blast. Are you planning to take this on the road?
A: We are planning tours but I don't know if I will be a part of the road shows other than as Producer.
Q: [by lozangelez] I hope you are doing well these days, I’m always a fan of your and of the whole Brady Bunch gang. Barry I wanted to ask you if you made a special appearance in the Pilot episode of Welcome Back Kotter? I thought I remember seeing you sitting in the back row of the first episode, I have always wondered if this was you.
A: No. I was not a part of the Welcome Back Kotter pilot.
Q: [by bradybucnh1fan] In the pilot episode of the Brady Bunch who is the woman in the picture.I know it was the first mother and wife but what was her real name and why did they pick her to be in the picture. Thank you.
A: Good trivia question. If you find out let me know.
Q: [by neecasguy] Are you a wrestling fan and if so, what show do you watch and who is your favorite and would the Brady’s watch it? Neeca-Heather
A: China Doll is a friend of mine and a former professional wrestler. I have to confess to not having seen a live match.
Q: [by vg56436p] Are you into the old black-and-white films from the 40′s and 50′s?
A: Yes. I love the story telling qualities of the earlier films. They are much more driven by the writers and the actors than the "effects" of today.
Q: [by dmon900] Are you an “American Idol” fan?
A: Absolutely. Are you going to audition?