"I remember the first broadcast when I was in the studio and here was 'The Lone Ranger' right across from me....You've got the William Tell Overture leading in and then he would say "Hi-yo Silver!" and I would say: 'A fiery horse with a speed of light, a cloud of dust, and a hearty 'Hi-yo Silver!', the Lone Ranger!' That was exciting."
About This Interview
In his over two-hour Archive interview, Fred Foy (1921-2010) talks about his first work in broadcasting at the 250-watt radio station WMBC, where he worked for on-the-job experience. He talks about his start at Detroit station WXYZ, interrupted by his service during World War II, and his return to the station following his service. He gives a description of his years during the war, working in Cairo, Egypt as the "American" announcer on the all-British announcing staff there, and how he came to participate in a radio broadcast opposite Jack Benny. He speaks in great detail about his long tenure as narrator for the legendary WXYZ radio show "The Lone Ranger." For "The Lone Ranger" he describes a typical work-week on the series and gives his impressions of Brace Beemer (who played the Ranger) and others in the cast. Foy performs the famous opening narration ("A fiery horse with the speed of light, a cloud of dust, and a hearty Hi-Yo Silver….") and recounts the story of how, for one broadcast, he subbed for Brace Beemer, who had laryngitis. Foy then talks about The Lone Ranger's transition to television: noting actors who moved from the radio to the television show, describing the back story of the "Lone Ranger" character (re-established on television), and relating his meeting of television's "Lone Ranger," Clayton Moore. Foy also looks back on his association with WXYZ's other popular radio adventures "The Green Hornet" and "Challenge of the Yukon." He chronicles his move to New York City and his over twenty-year tenure as a staff announcer at the ABC network. He discusses several of the shows he worked on, including The Les Crane Show (ABC's first foray into late-night programming), The Dick Cavett Show, and The Daytime Emmy Awards. Lastly, he relates his experience appearing at SPERDVAC (The Society to Preserve and Encourage Radio Drama, Variety and Comedy) 's 75th anniversary celebration of "The Lone Ranger." B-roll includes photos from Foy's career in radio and television ("The Lone Ranger," The Dick Cavett Show) and a shot of the program cover from the SPERDVAC event. Gary Rutkowski conducted the interview in Studio City, CA on May 5, 2008.