Harry Shearer is unquestionably one of the best voice artists working in animation today–with THE SIMPSONS, he’s created more rich, funny characterizations than most performers do in a lifetime. But he’s been involved in so many non-animation projects that have brought me pleasure–dating back to the Albert Brooks comedy album A STAR IS BOUGHT and Norman Lear’s FERNWOOD 2-NIGHT in the 1970s, and continuing on to his wonderful weekly LE SHOW radio program–that I never think of him as being a cartoon guy. Instead, he’s an observer of the American scene who works in a variety of media, including radio, prose, music, TV, movies…and animation.
I’m happy to say that I chatted with him and thanked him in person last night–Harry visited San Francisco as bass player/sidekick for his talented singer wife, Judith Owen, who played a local club. Funny seems to run in the family–Judith’s wicked wit ran through her patter and some of her song choices. She has a new holiday CD out, CHRISTMAS IN JULY (I bought a copy and got an autograph, but it’s also available at her site). I’d like it even if she didn’t happen to be married to Harry Shearer.