Richard sent us these hilarious Barry quotes.
“Yugoslavia is the only country that’s one hundred percent Marx. Fifty percent Karl and fifty percent Groucho”
“In Italy, they have different dialects (of Italian) for different rooms in the house.”
“Finland is the only country where the language is the main tourist attraction. I spent three days in my hotel room in Helsinki just trying to learn enough Finnish to get downstairs”
“Grammar is the constitution of a language”
“You can not un sell me on the British. You may be able to sell me on the Irish, but you cannot un sell me on the British. (From a radio interview with IRA members, in which Barry professed his unending gratitude to the British for their role in defeating the Nazis)
“You did not get out of the Warsaw Ghetto by taking the A-Train” (Barry’s comment on the modern use- or misuse- of the word “ghetto” as opposed to it’s original meaning)
(Barry’s closing remark from a radio interview with right-to-life anti abortionists)
In my part of North Carolina, we had a very effective method of oral contraception: the girl would open her mouth and say “no” .
It worked every time”
“This is why I don’t consider homosexuals to be perverted: There are a billion people in the world who speak Chinese. There are only ten million people who speak Swedish and only 250,000 people who speak Icelandic. Yet I don’t regard the Swedes or the Icelandics as “perverted” simply because they speak a minority language”
In the 1970's, Barry owned a duplex apartment with a warp around terrace on West 86th st. This was his ad when he went to sell:
I want to sell my penthouse duplex CO-OP Riverside Drive mid 80’s
If King Solomon were a New York City Real Estate Broker, he would look around, check the floors, measure the closets, and say “It’s worth $650,000 and not a penny more”
Why then, am I asking $750,000?
The answer begins to come clear, when you step out onto the terrace and look out over the river at the mountains, visible on the Western horizon, even when the weather is not very clear.
This apartment is for emperors who want to survey their domain from the World Trade Center to the Palisades beyond the George Washington Bridge.
This apartment is for party givers who might want to entertain both houses of congress with their wives plus a hundred extra friends without crowding.
This apartment is for gardeners, who’d like to test their thumbs on some choice rooftop acreage.
This apartment is for old fashioned men who want to see their wives descend a spiral staircase in silhouette against morning light reflected through glass brick.
This apartment is not for those who measure closets.
If you’d like to see it, please call 212 925-6105
"Famed talk radio and Fox News star Sean Hannity talks here about the man he calls, “one of the great pioneers of talk radio.” During Barry Farber’s legendary 60 years on the air, he influenced many Americans, but none who turned out like Sean Hannity. Here Hannity stops his national radio show to talk about listening to Farber in his youth and then years later, when he was a young talk show host, how veteran host Barry Farber influenced him and befriended him. That’s what legends do.
Written by Bob Just
“ That’s like trying to nail a custard pie to the side of a barn”
“That idea fizzled away like an Alka seltzer under Niagara Falls”
“The best show on earth is a couple of scorpions inside a brandy glass “
“That’s like getting into a horse and buggy and telling the driver “Quick JFK airport “
”It was such a smooth transaction, it was like and eel going through Vaseline”
“That’s like putting Chanel number 5 on a skunk, it’ll smell good for a little while"
Barry Farber, who died last night (May 6), was the most unusual person I've ever known. He was called "the dean of talk show hosts." I called him, "My Jewish friend." He called me, "My Christian friend." We often spoke of "getting together for lunch or dinner the next time" I was in New York City. I am very saddened that it never happened because I stopped flying in recent years except when forced to do so.
Barry had two children during his first marriage, and he married the second time to Sara Pentz, a television news reporter. Sara often appeared with him on the show and was as kind as Barry. He emailed me saying, "I'm from Greensboro, North Carolina; 29 miles from Winston-Salem and my 'bride' (September 3, 2008) is a Protestant from Columbus, Ohio, and she never dated a Jew OR a Southerner until we met. I introduced her to grits. I've never had better; Sara hits just the right consistency, not too watery or too concrete. However, I must have given her a hasty briefing when I first brought grits home from the supermarket, because to this day, Sara calls grits, 'That Jewish breakfast food.'
"Oh, dear. You got me going. They tell of the rabbi who arrived for a speech in Anniston, Alabama, and to his delight and amazement, there was a kosher delicatessen right across from the train station. He thought he'd be in gastronomical exile until he got back to New York, but the waitress brought him a huge platter of corned beef, pastrami, kishke, stuffed halse, braunschweiger, hamentashen—and in the middle, a huge pile of gleaming grits.
"'Excuse me,' said the Rabbi. 'Could you tell me what THAT is?' he said, pointing to the grits.
"'That's grits,' answered the local non-Jewish waitress in a thick Southern accent. 'I don't know WHAT in the h*** the rest of that stuff is!'"
The New York Daily News reported Barry as a native of Baltimore; however, he grew up in Greensboro, North Carolina. He loved and respected the South, especially North Carolina. Usually, when we ended a conversation, he would often say, "Please give your beautiful wife from Forsyth County [Winston Salem] my regards."
He emailed me once saying, Please thank your Mrs. for being so nice to me over the phone. Not only does she sound unusually friendly, but friendly in the tones of my Old South!"
He told me of being the only Jew in the Greensboro Public School System and listening to the Bible being read and the singing of Christian hymns. He said, "I didn't think that was unusual since they were Christians. That's what one would expect."
David Kupelian, managing editor of the major news website WorldNetDaily said, "The best talk hosts have the mysterious ability to draw the very best out of their guests, and that was Barry. He was unfailingly warm, gracious, knowledgeable, fresh, and effusively but genuinely enthusiastic about and interested in his guests."
David is right on target. I appeared as a guest on Barry's nightly talk show out of New York City at least 55 times over the years, and Barry was the epitome of kindness, graciousness, and professionalism. He never interrupted me or suggested that I not hit a forbidden button. I was never restricted once, although he got some major flak from some sponsors when I used the word, nigger, citing it as an offensive word "that my children never heard in our home."
Then I ridiculed the publications, both liberals and conservatives who substitute the silly "n-word" rather than using the offensive word in a non-offensive manner. Barry also permitted me to deal rather vividly with homosexuality and Martin Luther King, Jr. issues two or three times. Any talk show host willing to tell the truth about those two issues is not only current, correct, but courageous.
After my column on homosexuality, he wrote, "The purpose of this hasty note is, NEVER BEFORE have I ever READ under a valid by-line, descriptions like yours! I not only agree with you, but I fiercely admire your guts, particularly in this age when political correctness rules!" He then invited me to do a show on the subject.
Barry Farber was the poster boy for courage. He would tackle any subject without fear. He emailed me about my column dealing with Federal money going to disaster victims. He wrote, "This is the most courageous column I've ever read. If you've got the guts to write it, I've got the guts to talk about it with you. Okay?"
We talked about giving tax dollars away without any constitutional right to do so however great the need and however popular it might be. I also used Davy Crockett's courageous stand as a U.S. Congressman against "free" money.
Talkers magazine publisher Michael Harrison said: "Barry Farber was one of the founding fathers of talk radio whose influential career spanned both the modern and pre-modern eras of the format. He described his longevity in the business as 'being big in the old days and old in the big days.' He was among the finest public speakers of his time and a true wordsmith who served as an inspiration for generations of broadcasters who strived to be artists as well as communicators."
Michael hit the bull's eye.
Barry was a best-selling author of 14 books in over 30 foreign languages with over one million copies sold. He also wrote articles appearing in The New York Times, Reader's Digest, The Washington Post, and the Saturday Review, plus he was a regular columnist for the major news website WorldNetDaily (WND).
His first talk show began in 1960 called Barry Farber's WINS Open Mike. It was the only talk show on what was then a rock n' roll station and was on weeknights at 11 p.m. He left that job for an evening talk show on WOR in 1962 and became the all-night host in 1967. Barry wrote, "I was told I kept more people up nights than Mexican food."
In 1990, he became a national talk-show host on the ABC Radio Network, and in 1991 he was named "Talk Show Host of The Year" by the National Association of Radio Talk Show Hosts. Farber was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in 2014.
As Sean Hannity said of Farber: "He blazed the trail for all of us today in talk radio." Well, Joe Pyne was the first to hit the big time in Los Angeles in 1967, reaching ten million listeners daily. But Joe was a "shock jock" comparable to Morton Downey, Jr. who often yelled at his guests and blew smoke in their faces. I did the Downey show a few times, and he was always very kind to me even when the subject was AIDS, and his brother was dying of the disease. Barry was much too sophisticated and gracious to use shock antics simply to spike his ratings—and revenue.
Barry spoke or studied more than 25 languages, and he used that ability when he was assigned to the National Security Agency as a Russian translator in 1952. After serving in the Korean War, he became a journalist. In 1956, while serving a correspondent in Europe, he covered the Hungarian revolt against Soviet occupation.
My appearances on his show were always a highlight of my day giving me an opportunity to talk about my books or columns or website. Some talk show hosts are fearful that their guests might sell a few books or draw readers to their blog or website. Barry was very generous in promoting his guests.
In the beginning, he insisted on calling me "Dr. Boys" and going on to provide my bona fides, providing some credibility for the audience. He was always formal on the air with "Dr." or "Rev." or "Dr. Rev." however, in conversation and emails he ended up calling me "Don" or "Dr. Don."
Barry and I agreed, as far as I know, on all the social, financial, and political issues. Of course, we disagreed about religion; after all, he was an outspoken (yet not obnoxious) Jew, and I'm an outspoken (yet not obnoxious, seldom) Fundamentalist Christian. He often gave me an open door to express my biblical views on many issues.
While Barry dealt with controversy, he didn't seem to have an agenda. I do. I want to make the Gospel aware, available, and to be accepted by the world. Barry often aggressively opened the door for me to make the Gospel, or Christmas, or Easter very clear to every listener. Of course, he knew that was my agenda. Furthermore, I want to give every liberal constant heartburn and insomnia as I prove that they are the most untruthful, unfair, and unnecessary people on earth.
Barry emailed me, saying, "You don't have to be Christian to love your spirited, slashing, and totally successful defense of God. You don't need a Divinity degree from Harvard to get all your points [regarding evolution]. Flat tires may just happen; [but] not a universe. I've never understood how an atheist could survive any ten minutes of a basic astronomy course."
Today, I realized that I can read scores of Barry's emails if I ever get discouraged, despondent, or simply down, and I can get a quick boost from Barry's hyperboles. There is no way I can get away with using some of his milder compliments to me, but I'll try.
He wrote, "Dear Dr. Don, your energy is a great crowd-pleaser, audience-builder, and argument-winner. If we could tie a string around your waist and dip you into the Hudson River like a tea-bag at around 79th Street, within half an hour, you'd have SODA WATER from the Statue of Liberty to the George Washington Bridge!"
"Who says only idiots stand up and cheer and howl with laughter -- in their own apartments. I've been trying for half an hour already to calm down enough to thank you and congratulate you on what may be the best column ever written...Great job, Dear Friend. Pretend this is an invitation for any night next week -- 8 to 9 Eastern -- and if you like my column a tiny fraction as much as I like yours, I'll be as proud as a dog with a hem-stitched tail!"
"You are absolutely the kindest and most generous, and you really know how to elevate the spirits without illegal substances!"
Or, "Don, this piece ought to become part of the Constitution! And as is. No amendments!"
Or, this one about gun control. "This is one of the greatest pieces ever written. I'll be calling!"
I could go on and on for pages, but someone out there might accuse me of OVER tooting my own horn, and I'm a very sensitive guy! Surely, I wouldn't be so shameless to do that. But then, if I don't toot my horn, no one else will now. And, it is my horn to toot.
Yes, my friend died last night, and I wept today.
I am so thankful my path crossed with Barry Farber many times over the years and for the opportunity to express my appreciation for his friendship.
After all, my Best Friend is a Jew, and He is still alive.
Barry Farber was so impressed with young broadcaster Josh Bernstein, that he ended up appearing on The Barry Farber Show hundreds of times. This is Josh Bernstein's heartfelt and comprehensive tribute to the career and influence of Barry on his worldview and journalistic standards.
Recollections of Barry
By Don Hauptman, NYC, April 28, 2021
Unlike others reminiscing here, Barry and I weren’t close. I wish we had been, but our schedules and his health were probably among the obstacles. Still, over the years, our paths crossed several times in interesting ways….
We first met in the late 1980s. I
I have a recurring dream. I’m at a party and am not supposed to be there. I keep thinking that I‘m going to get found out. It’s just a matter of time. Once, when Bibi and I were doing a gig at the American Museum of Natural History for the Today Show, I had this feeling in real life. I kept asking Bibi i
Back 50 years ago I was a die hard Democrat who came across Barry's radio show and the more I listened the more my mind began to question and question my beliefs and the more I began to "see the light" of Barry's knowledge and wisdom. As the years rolled by I would call in and debate him on various subjects and I w
Barry was a musician whose instruments were languages and he played them well. As a young immigrant I would listen to him and was lulled into learning. I am blessed to have been around in his heyday.
I grew up in an AM radio family. We all listened to the greats on NY radio-Jean Shepherd, Barry Gray, Bob Grant and Barry Farber. As a young adult, I continued listening and made it my business to spread the gospel, so to speak, of talk radio.
When your dad started his TV show, featuring The Hunter and The Hunted, I was hooked and
requested tickets to a taping. When the day came, I took a carload of my friends, some believers
and one a rank skeptic. I made the case the whole ride to Midtown from Brooklyn for the elegant
sincerity of your dad. I parked the car in one of those ripoff lots and we headed over to the studio.
It was closed tighter than, as Barry would say, a miser's purse. Nothing. Lights out. I was irate.
My friends were supportive but pissed. And the skeptic? "Another bullshit thing from one of your
conservative heroes,"he said.
This was in the days before email or cell phones for that matter. So, after I got home, I wrote
Barry a blistering letter. After all, we all had tickets and they cited the date and time and location
that we had honored. I was in my second or third year of teaching and about ten days later, I had
just arrived home in the afternoon, walking into the house to the sound of the ringing phone.
"Yes, hello. Have I reached Mr. Vincent Puleo?"
"This is Barry Farber!"
He then went on to deeply apologize. The taping had been canceled and his staff was supposed
to have contacted all ticket holders but they missed me. He took ultimate responsibility just as I
would expect from the courtly Barry Farber. He told me to reassemble my crew including the "renegade"
and his staff would arrange a VIP tour of the facility and some personal time at the studio. What a guy!
Vintage Barry. Your dad was the real deal and I will always remember him fondly.
Barry in 1988, WOR TV show FARBER closing segment.
Bibi my girl, it sounds to me like Barry is weakening and for that I am truly sorry to hear. He is surrounded by a lot of love God bless him but especially the precious love of his two daughters, Bibi and Celia. I wish I was there to give him a hug without hurting his weakened bones. I wish I could say 'Thank you Mr. Farber for allowing me into your home, thank you Mr. Farber for allowing me to perform in your home and thank you for allowing me to sit at your kitchen table and listen to your enlightening knowledge. Also thank you for on my final day in New York before your daughter Bibi drove me to JFK we stood on the sidewalk in upper west side and I told you a long Irish joke. In true Broadway fashion when I finished the joke and you smiled at the punchline with eyes of wisdom I used a stage effect and gently straightened your tie. You were amused by my dynamic and I felt you liked my mischevious play. It was hard leaving you there and later driving off to the airport with Bibi.' Please pass this on to Celia. Love, Jack.
As a close friend of Bibi Farber, I had pleasure of being Barry Farber's guest in his New York apartment more than once over the past few years. Each time, he welcomed me like an old beloved friend, showering me with warmth, appreciation and respect. On one visit, I had the chance to cook him dinner, and although it was a simple meal and he was having so much trouble eating or even seeing his food, he lavishly praised both the meal and me for making it. On another occasion, I had mistakenly parked in the wrong spot on 78th Street, and he insisted on paying my Manhattan parking ticket. I refused, but later in the day, having great difficulty walking, he asked me to help him get to the bank down the street because he needed to "do some business". I slowly and carefully escorted him, as we walked hand in hand. As it turns out, it was all about getting cash to cover my ticket and it was one of those times that one can't politely refuse a gift. On one visit, with Barry knowing very well that I was beyond liberal in my politics, he invited me to be on his radio show. We were going to talk about Saudi Arabia, one of the few parts of the world he was not acquainted with and where I had lived for a couple of years. That never happened, but I always felt a kinship with Barry that went well beyond politics. Maybe in the heart space beyond liberal, you meet with the heart space beyond conservatism. The words that Barry spoke to his daughter Celia perfectly matched my hope for how his spirit would leave this world: “He told me recently that his concept of death was ‘going somewhere I’ve never been before, like Finland or Estonia.’ " I'll bet that wherever and however that somewhere is, he'll relish the adventure and have great fun learning a whole new language!
Love to all!
Memories with Barry Farber August 24, 2020
Barry Farber a commentator, author, and host of his own Barry Farber Show on the radio, recently passed away.
He had his radio show for 60 years with only one brief interruption, when he ran to become the Mayor of New York and after for the congress seat in Washington (1974).
Barry Farber was a connoisseur of 22 languages, which he practiced with passion and enthusiasm. I can say this for sure about the Albanian language. Besides his linguistic curiosity and thirst, Barry had a wonderful range of culture and history as well as inexhaustible intellectual curiosity.
As he told himself, he heard the name of country called Albania suddenly in the fourth grade in North Carolina, when the fourth grade teacher informed her students that she had a bad news for them. “The country of John Pema, Albania, today was invaded by Italia”. It was April 7, 1939. I could not wait to go home and find the world map and locate Albania, my classmate's country that was invaded. From that day on I was obsessed with Albania and my curiosity for it never stopped- he used to say often.
One day, in 1997, while in the dental office of Dr. Lynkow, implant expert, he was curious to know the country that Loreta, my oldest sister, came from. Barry himself told us how he flew from the chair out of joy. “I have always wanted to meet Albanians from Albania and learn from their mouths about the country and its history.” Barry said that when he visited Yugoslavia in 1957 he wanted to visit Albania as well, but was not granted a visa. Immediately he told Loreta that he wanted to get to know her whole family. He was thrilled to learn that her father was a well-known writer in Albania and moreover, almost his age. He invited the whole Prifti family, parents, daughter, husbands, and their children to dinner in a restaurant in Manhattan. From that day we met for family celebrations and other events that we shared together.
In his show, Barry invited Eric, my son, and Dorian, my nephew who were high school students at the time, to discuss their years of schooling in Albania. I was amazed at the level of elaboration of thoughts during their conversation as the main guests on his radio show.
Barry Farber had the gift of an orator, but also of an informed and respected interlocutor. As much as he knew again he allowed himself to listen and learn from every conversation and with everyone.
One of the most interesting topics was the time of Tito’s severance of relations with Yugoslavia, in the late 1950, and when he heard dad's story he said that he could not have a more complete and accurate description.
“My classmate and I went to the youth house in Ersekë every afternoon to play ping-pong- dad started the story. When we entered, we immediately noticed that there was one portrait missing in the wall in the room where we were playing. Alarmed by this act, which could only be hostile, we set off for the secretary's office.
-What has happened? – the secretary asked.
- A portrait is missing!
-What portrait? Who did it? One of your friends?- asked the secretary.
-The portrait of comrade Tito has been removed from the wall. The great friend of our people...
Oh , don’t worry. There is no problem. Go play! – the secretary interrupted us without giving any details.
Few days later we read in the newspaper the breakdown of relations with Yugoslavia – concluded the story my dad.
Barry liked this story and often repeated it when we had American friends at the table who did not know about the breakdown of Albania's relations with Yugoslavia. When he finished the tragic-comic story Barry laughed out loud.
For Kosova and during the war, Barry Farber invited American supporters and sympathizers for the liberation of Kosova. He invited to a special show for Kosova, my sister Rafaela, after her return from the Kosovar refugee camps, when she accompanied the ABC television team for the special show 20/20. Barry did not only help by explaining the serious and critical situation of the Albanians in Kosova, but he also took care to collect and send aid there.
Last summer, after visiting Albania, we visited Barry at his Manhattan home and gave him a souvenir – it was an Albanian Passport with which , we told him, he was now formally a member of the Albanian Prifti Family. We were together in so many celebrations of Albanian flag day, in family shows and recitals, as well as at Christmas and Easter, without feeling the difference between Albanian emigrants from across the ocean and a “Jew from North Carolina” as he called himself.
Culture , respect were imbued with his incomparable intellect.
From the memories of almost a quarter of a century, I will single out the dinners at The Pier, Bocconcino, Ole, Bruno, Robert restaurants. As a personality known by so many owners, he was in the restaurants welcome as in his home.
Once during dinner we had a tradition of taking singing. Barry knew even an old Albanian song that he sang masterfully.
For me , the most beautiful memory is in the Asti Restaurant, where the waiters were opera singers and brought the plates singing different arias. Barry knew I liked O Sole Mio very much and asked the tenor to sing it. The tenor was ready and even invited me to sing the song with him on stage.
I could not refuse this big opportunity. And there I was , singing one of my favorite songs on the left side of a professional tenor. I felt how his voice came out of his big chest. When the song was over, the tenor thanked me for “helping him sing the song. We had a big laugh.
Our good friend Barry knew how to bring joy to dinner, humor in stories and seriousness in conversations on any topic about the homeland. With Barry we felt at home.
His departure from life leaves a great void in our hearts, but many wonderful memories are a medicine to ease the pain.