Daws Butler (continued)

As painful and time-consuming as that must have been for him, it paid off. Warner Brothers, who had told him, point blank, that Mel Blanc did everything for their cartoons began to use him, here and there, for voices that Mel could not do. Eventually Hanna and Barbera used him for some of their Tom and Jerry cartoons (while they were still at MGM.....They had not yet started their own studio). Finally 1957 rolled around and Hanna-Barbera produced their very first cartoon series (Ruff and Reddy), with only two voice actors: Daws Butler and Don Messick. For quite a few years, Butler and Messick were almost the only voices heard in their cartoons.

Daws also mentioned that all that painstaking work of writing all those letters got him started as a writer for commercials. He never stopped writing, even after he re-establised himself as an actor.

Last but not least, Jay Ward's studio tapped Daws, for some of their cartoons, in 1958 (though their first series, Rocky & His Friends, did not actually air until nearly the end of 1959). Jay Ward and Bill Scott used him right up until the end, when their studio closed in the mid 80s.

I am sure that I am not alone in missing Daws Butler (he died in 1988). Just as I mentioned, in the piece on Paul Frees, there is many a time that I wish that Daws were still here. I'll never forget him, for the many times that he wrote and that one actual phone call that we shared.

Daws Butler and June Foray are the finest voice artists, who ever lived, in my opinion. I would actually say that Mr. Butler, alone, wears "the crown".......but then comparing Daws and June is quite unfair.........definitely tantamount to comparing apples and oranges.........

Before I ever thought of writing to any of Jay Ward's stars: Daws Butler, June Foray, Paul Frees, Bill Scott, and even Walter Tetley........my mother remarked to me, one day, while we were watching a Hanna-Barbera cartoon together (in which Daws was voicing Hokey Wolf):

"Can you imagine what it must be like to make a living doing voices for cartoons?"

No one........Absolutely no one........ever answered that question better.......than my dear, beloved friend, Daws Butler.............

***