The Greg Brady Project

Welcome to the official Barry Williams' blog

My friends call me Barry. From time to time I also hear the name Greg. Yeah, as in Greg Brady. The Brady Bunch represents a fun time in my life. But it’s only part of the story. There’s more to say and that’s what The Greg Brady Project is all about – a place to say it. So, I’ve invited some friends to join me and share their perspectives on the Brady’s, the 70′s and just about everything else. Now, I’m inviting you…

21 Jan
Bob Hunt

Ruby meets Oswald? The Hunt brothers attempt The Music Man.

My brother and I are professional educators, not actors, but we’re also longtime fans of The Music Man. A couple summers ago we followed a whim to audition for a local production of our favorite musical. Armed with hastily chosen songs and dramatic readings, we arrived at the community house and were almost immediately recruited into a mass drill by the choreographer, during which it was obvious to everyone that my brother and I would not be dancing in this show, if we would even appear at all. Nevertheless, we soldiered on through our auditions, heeded the classic warning to not call the director, and within a few days (wonder of wonders) he called us. My brother would portray the bumbling Mayor Shinn, and I would take the role of anvil salesman Charlie Cowell.

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20 Jan
Barry Williams

Sam, thanks for the memories

written by Barry Williams in Blog, barry | 10 comments

Sam & Alice
‘Sam at Work’

My friend Magic Matt Alan called from his Outlaw Radio Show Saturday (Magic because when he is not doing radio shows he likes to saw people in half) to get my thoughts about the passing of Allan Melvin our dear Sam the Butcher. After we got passed the usual jokes – did he ever give Alice any free meat, where did they really go on their bowling dates, will the Brady’s ever get to eat meatloaf again, we talked and shared a bit about this kind, talented character actor.

His television career goes back to the days of Sgt. Bilko with Phil Silvers. He was already a veteran by the time he joined our show in 1970 having worked in other series such as The Andy Griffith Show, Gomer Pyle USMC and The Dick Van Dyke Show. Most of the scenes Allan did were with Ann B. Davis and did not include us kids. We were usually busy in the school room. But I can recall the extra energy he brought to the set, even when I was just passing through, and the ease with which those two pros brought their relationship to life. One thing I found interesting and just recently learned is that he is the voice of Magilla Gorilla.

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19 Jan
Bob Hunt

Eye of the Beholder

written by Bob Hunt in Blog | 4 comments

Take a good look at the above painting. That’s right: painting. If you thought you were looking at a photograph, then give kudos to the artist for achieving realism through oil on canvas. Now, ask yourself: is this a good piece of art? Is it something that clearly required a talented hand, an accomplishment that is not likely to be within reach of the average person? What if I told you that this painting greets visitors in the atrium of the Louvre in Paris and has an estimated value of 3.5 million euros? Has your estimation of its artistic strength increased? What if I then told you that I bought this painting for $20 in the clearance aisle at Sears? Might it suddenly seem less impressive as a creative statement?

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18 Jan
Barry Williams

My Son is Five!

written by Barry Williams in Blog, barry | 3 comments

‘Little B and Dad’
‘Dad and Little B’

My son, Brandon, turned five years old yesterday. We are together in New York City for the week. I was looking to do something special to celebrate. According to Brandon, I scored. This past November and December I starred in a new off Broadway musical called Growing Up 70′s. In that show I took a young 10 year old talented actor, whose name is Trevor Braun, on a tour of the seventies. At points in the show he also played the role of my son. Brandon and Trevor became friends. During my production Trevor landed the role of Flounder, Ariel’s loyal sidekick, in the Broadway musical of the Little Mermaid. That happens to be Brandon’s favorite story, I think it has something to do with the sea and kissing the girl.

Well, with the help of Trevor’s parents, I arranged tickets to Wednesday’s matinee to see the show with Trevor in it.

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17 Jan
Bob Hunt

Where sitcom stars shine

written by Bob Hunt in Blog | 2 comments

‘Married Alive’

When Barry treads the boards next month in Married Alive at the New Theatre Restaurant in Kansas City, he’ll be acting and singing in a venue that has hosted many TV celebrities since its initial season in 1992. Some of television’s most beloved sitcoms have seen their alumni grace the New Theater stage, from The Odd Couple‘s Jack Klugman (Aspirin and Elephants, 2002) to All in the Family‘s Sally Struthers (Club of Hearts, 2005). Even Charlotte Rae of Facts of Life fame has entertained the dining audiences of Kansas City (in The Solid Gold Cadillac, 1997).

Interestingly, some TV shows have sent multiple performers to the New Theatre. Love Boat, for example, may boast appearances by both Gavin MacLeod (Lend Me A Tenor, 1998) and Bernie Kopell (Leading Ladies, 2007). One Day at a Time has sent along not only Bonnie Franklin (Same Time Next Year, 2000; 2 Across, 2005) but also Pat Harrington (Father of the Bride, 2002). Tom Bosley (Beau Jest, 2002) and Marion Ross (Steel Magnolias, 1995; Over the River and Through the Woods, 2001 and 2006; Barefoot in the Park, 2004) have both acted there since leaving Happy Days. And though The Andy Griffith Show‘s Elinor Donahue only showed up at the New Theater once (Never Too Late, 1997), colleague Don Knotts returned for a total of four shows (Harvey, 1994; You Can’t Take It With You, 1996; On Golden Pond, 1999 and 2003; Norman, Is That You?, 2001).

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16 Jan
Barry Williams

Hey Joe, throw me the ball

written by Barry Williams in Blog, barry | 3 comments

The Super Bowl is just around the corner and in the world of football we’re down to four teams: Giants, Packers, Chargers and Patriots. For most people it’s the holidays that stir that nostalgic emotion. For me the connection with a particular time of year is the big day that brings two teams of gladiators together for that annual test of mettle – the Super Bowl. It all started with a man known as Broadway Joe.

On the Brady Bunch, we weren’t known for our “guest stars” although we had several. Joe Namath is one guest star who is particularly memorable and, one could say even inspirational. Already a legendary football player by the time our fifth season of the Bunch got underway, I was able to spend a couple of days on the set with him. Unfortunately for me the episode called MAIL ORDER HERO, focused around little Brady brother Bobby. I didn’t let that get in the way of playing receiver of his passes in patterns of down and outs and going long in-between takes. Joe was, simply put, a gracious guy. He didn’t avoid everyone by staying in his dressing room until he was called, he didn’t sit in the corner waiting to get it over with, he was social, friendly, and oh yeah… pretty good with a football.

I ate it up.

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15 Jan
Eric Greenberg

Surviving the Strike

written by Eric Greenberg in Blog | 2 comments

WGA Strike

OK. Nobody panic, but in case you didn’t notice, there were no previews for upcoming shows at the end of last Wednesday’s episode of “Gossip Girl.” This leads to two questions. 1.) Are we finally at the point where the WGA strike has turned from a news headline into something that actually affects us as viewers? 2) Do I really want to admit in writing that I’m hooked on the aforementioned CW series like a teenage girl?

We all hoped there’d be a resolution before the well ran dry, but here we are at the end of the line. “30 Rock”: Done. “The Office”: Done. “How I Met Your Mother”: Done. Now I’m clinging to the last few episodes of “Friday Night Lights” for dear life. You can check out this TV Guide Link to determine the severity of your personal viewing situation, but there’s no doubt the outlook is bleak. At this point, the only thing left to do is figure out how to pass the time until next season.

Let me remind you friends, that before television, there was another medium called literature. The original art of storytelling. The medium that requires a little effort and your endless imagination. Why not take this opportunity to go to your local library and re-discover the wonders of reading a good book? OK. Enough horsing around. Here’s the real plan…

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14 Jan
Mary Jo and John Tenuto

Resolute Brady

written by Mary Jo and John Tenuto in Blog | 1 comment

January is the month for resolutions. Why not let the Brady Bunch be your resolution guide? The characters of the Brady Bunch often learned lessons during the show. Here are some you might enjoy.

Greg Brady: I will listen better to people’s exact words (“Greg Gets Grounded”)

Marcia Brady: I will nose that personality means more than looks (“The Subject Was Noses”)

Peter Brady: I will know that when its time to change its probably time to rearrange (“Dough Re Me”)

Jan Brady: I will try to remember that being average isn’t so bad (Every episode)

Cindy Brady: I will be happy with what makeths me spethial (“A Fistful of Reasons”)

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13 Jan
Bob Hunt

As we bask in the warm, lava lamp glow of 70′s nostalgia, let us observe a moment of silence in recognition of the decade’s departed candy, the late confections that are no longer as accessible as the nearest corner drug store. Yea, though our ears and eyes may still enjoy our favorite musical and sitcom highlights, our tongues yearn for the delightful sensations of bygone candy bars. For it was whilst consuming such tooth-rotting fare that we absorbed the sights and sounds of the era. May I put forth for special recognition the iconic bar of my youth, a once-coveted item among its chocolate-coated peers, the king of its ilk, the Marathon Bar.

Eight inches of braided caramel enveloped in milk chocolate like a macroscopic strand of chocoholic DNA. A bright red and yellow wrapper that screamed for attention amidst M&M’s and Milky Ways, its reverse side featuring the famous ruler to prove that you were indeed about to purchase as long a bar as you had been promised. Tantalizing wild west commercial duels between the villainous Quick Carl and the virtuous Marathon John, who knew that neither Carl nor anyone else could eat a Marathon Bar in a hurry. As the saying went, it lasts a good long time.

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12 Jan
Barry Williams

Farewell Johnny

written by Barry Williams in barry | No comments

‘My Friend Johnny Grant’
‘My Friend Johnny Grant’

I was saddened to learn of the passing of Hollywood’s Honorary Mayor, Johnny Grant this past Wednesday. Johnny was the torch and the light of Hollywood. He was a great ambassador for the city. I have had a chance to be with him on various occasions and twice in the past year. Once was at the Hollywood Museum and just three months ago at the dedication of an enormous 600 million dollar development in the Hollywood & Vine area that was just breaking ground. He arrived in a wheelchair, but stood and delivered a wonderful talk about what a great impact this project will have on the city. His passion resonated throughout the Pantages Theatre, where the dedication was being held, and an inspiration for me watching one of his life long dreams was about to become a reality.

When the condominiums, apartments and retail space are completed, I plan to go into the new W Hotel that is being built and drink a toast to Hollywood’s finest Mayor, Johnny Grant.

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