June 27, 2004 by

Danny Dark


Categories: Actors, Hollywood

Danny Dark’s face was not famous, but his distinctive voice enticed millions to purchase everything from Keebler Cookies to Armorall.
Born Daniel Melville Croskery, he was raised in Tulsa, Okla. Dark attended Drury University in Springfield, Mo., then offered his vocal talents to radio stations in Cleveland, Miami, New Orleans, St. Louis and Los Angeles.
In the mid-1960s, Dark launched his voice-over career. For nearly four decades, he embedded pop culture with memorable lines in advertisements for Budweiser (“This Bud’s for you”), Raid Ant & Roach Killer (“Raid kills bugs dead”) and StarKist Tuna (“Sorry, Charlie”). Dark was the voice of NBC and the long-running TV western “Bonanza.” In the “Super Friends” cartoon series, he voiced several characters, including the Man of Steel.
Dark died on June 13 from bleeding in the lungs. He was 65.

15 Responses to Danny Dark

  1. DT

    I even remember when Dark would say “Go Where the News Is…with NBC News.” He even did a plug for NBC-owned WRC-TV in Washington by saying, “At NBC, we go where the news is. At channel 4, we live where the news is. NBC & Channel 4 News, together, were Washington’s Team 4 News.”

  2. Jon St.John

    As a fellow voice over artist and former radio announcer, I am deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Danny Dark.
    While I was the production director at Eagle106 in Philadelphia in 1988, I had the pleasure of directing Danny in session when he became the imaging voice of The Eagle. He was a kind, gracious man with a wonderful voice.
    He is missed.

  3. doug collins

    Danny and I met in the seventh grade, we remained friends for 50 plus years. we drank beer and chased girls together. We both liked jazz and during high-school when Danny had a band he had me play bass for the first set until the real bassist showed up. This was pretty amazing since I had never played bass in my life. All though Danny lived away from Tulsa, we would get together with mutual friends whenever he came home to visit his family. He was one of my best friends and I miss him.

  4. Jim MacKrell

    One day on my way to work at WNOE in New Orleans,I left my apartment and ran head on into Danny Dark, who was my neighbor in the next apartment and we had never met. Danny became a life long friend. We both moved to WFUN in Miami with Bud Connell and after that our paths departed. We remained friends for over 40 years. Danny introduced me to my first commerical Agent Dick Barth in Los Angeles and I quess is most responsible for my career. Off and one we visited remaining close until the end. Just days before Danny died, Tommy Oliver, a noted song writer and record producer were to have dinner with Dan, He had to cancel and we never saw him again. I miss him, I miss everything he was and stood for. DD. our lives were enriched by you and your wonderful soul. Jim MacKrell

  5. Frank

    I remember in college, Danny found a baby possum in the street that evidently had been hit by a car. He picked the animal up and took him to a veterinarian and learned that the possum had suffered a broken leg. The veterinarian put a tiny splint on the possum and Danny took the animal to his home to convalesce. He named the possum, “Dick Biondi,” after some radio personality he knew. The possum died.

  6. bill deane

    I knew danny dark when we were dj’ing at wfun. like everybody else, i guess, i just loved the guy. i never met anybody who didn’t like danny. he was funny on and off the air…and carried that love of people to his audience, without reservation. he opened his heart to all he met.

  7. willis duff

    Belatedly: Danny & I worked together at KLAC in LA in the mid-60s as the station transitioned from MOR to all-talk, a bumpy ride for both of us. Danny could do more with a short line (“Hi, Mommy…”) than anyone I ever knew. When it came to haggling with talk show callers, he was kind and funny – not necessarily what the listeners to the likes of Joe Pyne expected. I always thought that nasty experience was part of the reason Danny guided that golden throat into the VO biz. Ad agency directors are nicer than callers.

  8. AW

    Danny was a great father and a wonderful talent. He had two really beautiful daughters who lived in Tulsa for awhile.
    He was as big of a fixture and mainstay of 70’s and 80’s commercial and pop culture as anyone, really.

  9. Caroline

    Danny truly left his mark. He inspired you. He showed you what life could really be if you just had fun with it and learned to laugh at things. He gravitated towards everything positive, because he was positive. He loved life and he loved people. He had an affectionate and very creative name, sometimes two or three versions for everyone he loved, and that was pretty much everybody. He used to leave me fun notes addressed to “Terence” signed “From one of your parents”…..I loved him too.
    p.s. Thanks for the possum story. I had a belly laugh thinking of it….

  10. Dave

    Danny came to speak to a summer drama class at Granada Hills High School in 1976, the year I entered the school. His daughter was in the class, but I can’t remember her name.
    Even though we were technically “in L.A.” and had a few celebrities in the neighborhood (Valerie Bertinelli was a year ahead of me), it was just so cool hearing that familiar voice in person. He was great fun, and talked about how being a v/o announcer was really being an actor in many ways.
    We kept asking him to do the lines from some of the spots he was famous for, and gave him applause after each, which he was a little embarassed about. The last one he did for us was the tag line for a really popular cat food commercial at the time. “These cats didn’t walk away from Friskies Buffet.” Well, we were just beside ourselves to hear that one in person.
    Thanks, Danny, for a great memory.

  11. Jim Bohannon

    My second radio job was at KICK in Springfield, MO, about 19 years after Danny was there. We had some good folks go through there: Imus sidekick Charles McCord, MTV founder Les Garland, WLS production director Mike Wolfgang, and Dallas TV anchor John Criswell among others. But Danny was always the gold standard of KICK alums. Those who remembered Danny were besieged with requests for stories about him. We all wished that some of his greatness would rub off on us–gilt by association, if you will. Jim Bohannon, talk host, Westwood One.

  12. Jim Bohannon

    Danny’s first radio gig was my second–KICK, Springfield, MO. By the time I got there, in 1964, Danny was already the gold standard of voiceovers and the pinnacle of bragging rights for a station which also produced Les Garland and Imus sidekick Charles McCord. I once tried to interview Danny on my syndicated talk show. Wish I’d tried harder. He is missed.

  13. Jeffrey Juli

    Though I didn’t know who Danny Dark was until a few months back when I started visiting some of these sites, he affected my life as a child in a major way. I grew up watching the Raid commercials seeing those adorable bug characters lose and end up dead every time no matter how hard they tried to escape. Each time, Dark was in the background pronouncing their doom with pungant lines like: “Indoors or outdoors Raid hunts bugs down like radar and kills them dead.” The bugs would do some of the cutest things like pattering their feet, sticking their tongues out, hugging each other, etc. Seeing them get blown up each time and Dark using such pungant lines and deadly tone of voice gave me an extreme pro-life stance where bugs are concerned, even real ones. It’s great to find a place to talk about this finally and I’ll give some examples of specific commercials next time. My site Raid Bug Drama can be found in flickr/groups.

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