Impressionist David Frye Dies

Jan 31, 2011  •  Post A Comment

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, the greatest political impressionist in the world was David Frye. The comic died Saturday in Las Vegas at the age of 77 of heart disease, reports the AP.

Frye appeared on numerous television shows, bringing his interpretations of Richard Nixon, Lyndon Johnson, George Wallace and other major politicians into sharp focus. Frye also did many of the celebrities of the time, including William F. Buckley and Truman Capote, as well as Walter Cronkite, Kirk Douglas and Howard Cosell.

Frye was at his height during the Nixon years, when he recorded albums dedicated to "Tricky Dicky."


  1. Wow, he really made me laugh back in the day. So, what ever happened to the next generation of impressionists? Sure, you see a bit of it on SNL, but taht’s really more impersonations than impressions.
    Are there any really good impressionists out there now or has the proliferation of 24/7 TV taken all the socio-political fun out of it? Maybe with no variety shows on, it’s tough to find a gig with all the late night hosts too busy plugging crap movies and fawning over so-called movie stars. Ask yourself; are there really any bigger than-life characters left with voices and mannersims like Ed Sullivans or Tricky Dicks worth doing? And don’t tell me the dude who was on TNT (TBS?) His show sank faster than the Titanic.

  2. I bumped into the late David Frye at New York City’s Stage Deli and exchanged ‘hellos.’ David invited me to
    have dinner with him.

    During dinner, he told me that he was going to play the main showroom at Caesars Palace in Vegas and
    had just perfected an impression of Martin Luther King delivering his “I Have A Dream Speech.” David
    said he was concerned that impersonating MLK in Vegas might be considered inappropriate. He asked
    me if he could try out his impression at dinner and wanted my candid opinion.

    I said “Please do” and then closed my eyes. David was flawless. The intonations and nuances were
    perfect. He put chills right through me. I encouraged David to perform this uncanny impression at Caesars.
    He was relieved and decided to do it. David received rave reviews.

    David was one-of-a kind. There will never be another like him.

Your Comment

Email (will not be published)