DOUBLE TALK - The Ventriloquist Guide.  1938!  13 memiographed 8.5x11 pages, faded, fragile and  tattered.  But nearly whole except for a corner torn from the last page, and oh, so very fascinating to read!  VERY RARE!  For auction now:  http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=260933746398

Here are just a few random excerpts from this issue of DOUBLE TALK:

"The boy voice that is pitched in the female or head tone, can express all the lighter emotions such as expectation, gratitude, sorrow, appeasement, placation, etc.  But this also has drawback - you gain expression but lose carrying power.  Bergen uses a voice that is placed so far into the female section, that if he were to put a quaver in it, he would have the voice of an old woman.  You who have heard Bergen when he did not use the mike, know how far (or not so far) that voice can carry."  From The Fundamentals of the Ventriloquial Voice by Ellwood & Ripel.

"What makes the performance "click" with the audience?  First, the Material.  Assuming you have a good supply of material, it must be assembled for presentation.  We do not want a string of gags with no connection.  They must be "blended" into a sensible conversation.  Pick out the gags that are funny to you.  Classify them into as near perfect continuity as possible - soon that conversation effect will take form."  From Making the Performance Click Pt. 1, By Ralph DeShong

"Claude Burke and Jerry recently gave a show at a local church Bazaar.  Part way through the act Claude found a bottle on Jerry and to punish him said he was going to drink it and not give Jerry any.  Jerry said he wouldn't let him drink it.  Claude wanted to know how he was going to stop him.  Jerry said he would keep on talking.  Claude said that wouldn't stop him as he could drink between words.  So Jerry said he would hum a continuous note and stop him that way.  So Jerry hummed, but Claude drank the glass full of liquid just the same.  Needless to say, the stunt got a big hand.  Claude is quite proud of Jerry because for one reason he is an original Charlie Mack figure.  A brother under the paint of the famous McCarthy."  From Dummy Talk by Oscar.

V: What happened to your sister?  I always like your sister.
F:  Yeah.  Too darn well.  Wheee.
V: We'll skip that...she was quite a girl.
F: She never loved but two parties.
V: Is that so?  Who were they?
F: The Democrats and the Republicans!
From dialogue "Old Jokes Home" by William S. Hume

"Some persons can tell a gag with risque touch and it is "cute"...another  person can tell the same gag and it is just rotten smut and disgusts people.  If you haven't the personality to tell these jokes, don't try to...you just cheapen yourself and your act.  You will find it easier to get and use original material...(however) the radio has burned up so much legitimate patter it is disgustingly hard to get an original act that has gags people haven't heard before."  From Dialogue by Leon.

"Goldwyn Follies showing here for the third week, playing to a packed house.  Bergen does his stuff okay and made a hit although many passed remarks about his lip control.  The Mrs. took in the show and did I catch it when she got home.  'Why,' says she, 'do all you vents beef about Bergen?  Maybe his lips do move, so what?  He sure knows how to handle a figure and make it true to life which is more than I can say for a lot of Vents that I have seen, and besides, he is good looking.'   So there you are, what's a fellow going to do?"  From This 'N That by Richard Haldane.
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From Mr. D: All written so long ago (70 years), yet so much the them same - could have been yesterday!


  1. Anonymous1/16/2012

    Hi Clinton,

    Sounds like good stuff. How about copying and reissuing it, making it available to your "faithful followers" (or anyone else interested in purchasing a copy?


  2. Anonymous1/16/2012

    I would also would like a copy.