Happy Birthday, Dick
Born today in 1939 in New York, New York, Dick Smothers. He was actually the younger of them, though as a kid I always thought he was the older. Mom loved him best, and so did I... I'm old enough to remember them on television (The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour) - that's Tom with the guitar, and Dick with the bass... Here's a bit from a long interview with Ken Paulson on "Speaking Freely":
And Dick was doing an introduction. I came out in a bunny suit with just my face showing with these big ears and a pink bunny suit. He says, "What are you doing?" I said, "I'm protesting our policies in Central America." "So, wearing a bunny suit doesn't make any sense." I said, "Neither does our policy in Central America." "Well, that looks stupid." "So does our policy!" "Well, get out of that bunny suit!" "We ought to get out of Central America!" Big laughs, very funny. And that was at dress rehearsal. The guy says, "Well, now, you've got to say at the end there, 'But it's up to our elected officials to get us out of this.'" (Laughter) So I said, "OK." Then that was even funnier, like they're gonna do that.And here's another interview, with David Bianculli who wrote "Dangerously Funny: The Uncensored Story of the Smothers Brothers".
Tommy gets most of the press - and the laughs. But it wouldn't have worked with the patient straight man. So thanks, Dick - for the songs, the jokes, and the passion.