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…
What a nice evening at the Andy Williams Moon River Theatre. Singer, actor, playwright and former teen idol Frankie Avalon gave a great performance singing his hit songs and paying tribute to several other stars of the era. His son Frankie Jr, plays drums in the band and you can tell just how much he loves it. Guitarist Edan Everly, also gave an outstanding performance as he and Frankie sang a tribute to his father, Don Everly and his uncle, Phil Everly of the Everly Brothers. I was ushered backstage to see Frankie again. We had a nice visit and told him he inspired me to become a surfer. I also said he made it look a lot easier to surf (standing in front of a screen) than it actually is. He said he saw me surfing on the Brady Bunch Hawaii episode the day before. Also said I did pretty well… until I wiped out. I blamed the Tiki. Glad we got a photo to remember the great evening at his show. Photo taken by Craig Harris.
The summer is winding down and our fall show will start on September 13th and run through October 20th on select dates. The show is much improved since last year and there are more changes and surprises in store for the fall. I have added 6 young performers that look very much like the original Brady kids that sing and dance to Brady songs as well as popular 70’s songs by families like the Osmonds, the Jacksons, the Archies and more. This full production, multimedia show includes the best qualities of the Brady Bunch and brings them to life on stage. You will laugh, cry and catch yourself singing to the songs that we grew up with. Don’t miss Lunch with the Brady Bunch!!
Wow, what a great day for a cardboard boat race. The temperature was a balmy 70 plus degrees and the sun was shining. Rock Lane Resort on Indian Point is a nice place. I had a wonderful time and met a lot of nice people. A couple hundred people showed up to support CHANCES, watch the races and the demolition derby after. The boats were interesting to say the least, several colors and configurations. I know the time and effort that go into building cardboard boats. During the recording of the promos for this event, my son became very intrigued so he came home and built a boat. 2.5 rolls of duct tape and 5.5 hours later, we had a boat that floated for 4 minutes.
I am sure everyone is still thinking about their awesome Labor Day. If you are in Branson, I am inviting you to come to an event I am Co-Hosting on September 8th. CHANCES 3rd Annual Cardboard Boat Races will be held at Rock Lane Resort on Indian Point. I am thrilled to be participating in such a great cause and community event. All the money raised goes to benefit the children and adults in Stone County that have developmental disabilities. And I learned that cardboard can float. If you are in Branson, we would love to see you and support those in need. Enter a boat for $50 a person or just come and eat and enjoy the races. For more information, you can check out the CHANCES website at visit www.CHANCESofStoneCounty.org
I have not been posting lately, as I have been getting acclimated to my new home. I love the quality of life and the people are wonderful. Branson is a great place to call home. My son Brandon and I spent a lot of time together trying out everything we could. Our favorite time was spent out in the boat on Table Rock Lake, fishing, swimming, skiing and just having an all-around good time. We played more mini golf holes than I can count. Brandon did the best round ever at the Grand Country Square Indoor Mini Golf Course and had a couple holes-in-one. We saw a lot of shows and all were really good, but the Duttons show really made me go “wow” several times. The show is so high-energy and every one of the Duttons is so talented. There was fantastic singing, dancing, and playing every instrument imaginable, including bicycle horns. They have been performing for 20 years and it shows in the quality of their show. If you get to Branson, you really need to see this show. Check out their website at www.theduttons.com. We also went to Silver Dollar City, Whitewater, the Hamner Barber Show, Six and so many more. Brandon said to me, “Dad this is better than Disneyland.” I was shocked as Branson is now his favorite place to be.
It’s official! Barry’s new show, Brady Brunch, is underway at Yakov’s Branson Theater in Branson, Missouri! Of course, that’s Yakov as in actor, comedian Yakov Smirnoff, who I had a chance to chat with about his lengthy career, reinventing himself in Branson, and partnering with Barry to bring Brady Brunch to his stage!
You bring such a unique point of view to your act, which is I’m sure why you’re so successful. I’m curious if you ever played around with different personas back when you were starting out in the clubs or did you know right away that the best plan would be to just sort of be yourself?
Well my challenge was I didn’t speak English so I was being myself and my kind of a character kept changing by itself… by the more English I learned, the better I communicated my message and I never really had to do any impressions or, you know, things that would make me different because I was already different.
I have to imagine that some comedians have sort of a love hate relationship with catchphrases, but in most cases they’re sort of handed to you in a sitcom roll and you don’t necessarily have a choice about it. Yours is kind of a different situation and seems to have served you very well. Do you remember when you came up with “What a Country!”?
Yes. I was at The Comedy Store and I kept telling people some jokes and I kept saying “What a Country!” in the end, and I didn’t plan this to be funny and they kept laughing. So little by little, it became, they would come to me…the audience would come to me and say “What a Country!” and made me realize that they remembered that more than they remember jokes. So that was a big revelation for me that I might have stumbled on something that was powerful for them. So I kept saying that and then it became my signature piece.
Did you hear? Florence Henderson’s book, Life Is Not A Stage was just released. I am very happy for Florence that we can all learn “the rest of the story”. Over the years I have always felt like I “knew” Florence but this new book is loaded with revelations that I even her close friends will come as news.
I knew she would be in New York City last week on a promotional tour for the book which included appearances on The Today Show, The View and the Joy Behar Show. By chance, I was scheduled to be in the City at the same time.
I met her at the The Today Show and joined her backstage at The View. One of the things I am very grateful for is the ongoing lifetime friendships I have with her and the rest of the cast of the Brady’s and this was a nice way to catch up and support her as she shared her life story with everyone.
The next night I invited her to dinner in the heart of Broadway at Sardi’s restaurant, a favorite of us both. My son, Brandon who is now 8 an ¾’s, as he puts it, joined us. He has become a big fan of The Brady Bunch, not because I pushed it, and was prepared with plenty of questions for her. What was your favorite episode, did you like it when…, were you really mad when Peter broke the vase in the living room with the basketball?
What a fun evening and good food we had. Florence was so patient and answered each question as though it was the first time she had been asked. Brandon thinks it’s pretty cool I actually know her. I think it’s pretty cool he cares.
I just arrived in Branson, MO to begin my new show BRADY BRUNCH with BARRY WILLIAMS this week on Oct 5th. I am looking forward to her making a guest appearance. We certainly won’t run out of things to talk about. After I have read her new book I am sure I’ll have some new questions to ask her about.
Now Search & Win for Great Brady Prizes!
I have never worked so hard in my life. I have never enjoyed my work more. That pretty much sums up spending this past August with my partner Yakov Smirnoff in Branson, MO as we built my new multi-media variety show BRADY BRUNCH.
Ever since the days of Johnny Bravo, I have wanted to create a cabaret style musical show. Over the years I have done versions although they never felt like they came up to par. That has now changed.
The evolution of BRADY BRUNCH has been fantastic. I went to Branson with an outline, show elements, music charts, and ideas for the show I wanted to create. Yakov, who has been very successful throughout his past twenty years as a top celebrity comedian in Branson, grasped the concepts immediately and we went to work. We wanted to create something especially designed for our Branson audiences.
At first the show consisted mostly of stories, videos and a few songs, which I sang live to track and… as the show title implies, brunch was served during the show. We did our try-outs right there in the Yakov Theatre. The original concept was an enjoyable show, but we recognized there was a great deal of untapped potential.
Everyone hears entertainers tell audiences that they are an important part of every show. That has never been truer than with the emergence of BRADY BRUNCH.
Yakov attended these try out shows over a two-week period. After each show he had a conversation with the audience and invited them to share what they liked, didn’t care for, what they wanted to see more or less of and if it matched their expectations. It became apparent that while everyone liked the Brady Bunch and are familiar with Greg Brady few knew what to expect from a show starring “Barry Williams”.
I am fortunate to have been invited to perform in many wonderful places in my career. Looking ahead to the new year I hope I have the opportunity to perform in the places/locations below. A wise man once said, “if you don’t ask, the answer is always no.” So…can you help?
Here they are in no particular order…
1. Mirage/Las Vegas
2. Mariott Marquis Theatre/New York
3. Le Sporting Club/Monte Carlo
4. Yakov Theatre/Branson, MO
5. The Greek Theatre/Los Angeles, CA
6. Ka’anapali Beach Club/Maui, HI
7. Walt Disney World/Orlando, FL
8. Cruise Ship/Mediterranean Cruise
9. Grand Ole Opry/Nashville, TN
10. Dancing With the Stars
Let’s make it a great year.
Now Search & Win for Great Brady Prizes!
I am glad the Brady’s visited Hawaii for several weeks in 1972 for a three parter. It’s still at the top of my filming experiences. Please note that the Tiki Bobby found, the same one Greg was wearing when he wiped out on a coral head while surfing, didn’t REALLY bring bad luck.
Hawaii has long been my favorite vacation, relaxation, rejuvenation destination. Specifically the island of Maui and more specifically the beaches of Kaanapali.
How great it is to find myself here this week and next week plus all of January at the Kaanapali Beach Club, which is a Diamond Resort, where I have been invited to join a terrific troupe of performers including the Akima family and my co-hostess, Makalapua, to interpret the rich history of Hawaii and her people. Our Luau is known as the Feast At the Beach and this week, A Very Barry Christmas. It is a traditional and beautifully told Luau and there’s me with my attempts to become an Honorary Hawaiian. Throughout the show I try just about everything to be worthy of the honor. I tell stories, I host, I try to learn the native language, I invoke my experiences with Don Ho and make Tiny Bubbles a sing-a-long. At one point I don a grass skirt (just like the one Alice was wearing when she threw her hip out) with beads, leis and a headdress. Finally I try and make music with a conch shell. I can’t give away the ending here, but it helps my quest that I wear the original Brady Tiki throughout the show.
I wish everyone could join me for this oceanfront sunset on this magnificent island paradise.
I wish you a very Mele Kalikimaka,
Now Search & Win for Great Brady Prizes!