Ralph Livingstone Edwards was an American radio and television host and television producer.
Born in Merino, Colorado, Edwards worked for KROW-AM in Oakland, California while he was still in high school. After graduating from high school in 1931, he worked his way through college at the University of California, Berkeley, earning a B.A. in English in 1935. While there, he worked at every job from janitor to producer at Oakland’s KTAB. Failing to get a job as a high school teacher, he worked at KFRC and then hitchhiked across the country to New York, where, he said, “I ate ten-cent meals and slept on park benches”. After some part time announcing jobs, he got his big break in 1938 with a fulltime job for the Columbia Broadcasting System on WABC, where he worked with two other young announcers who would become broadcasting fixtures – Mel Allen and Andre Baruch.
The young broadcaster had an assured, professional manner, and in a few short years he was well established as a nationally famous announcer. It was Edwards who introduced Major Bowes every week on the Original Amateur Hour and Fred Allen on Town Hall Tonight. Edwards perfected a chuckling delivery, sounding as though he was in the midst of telling a very funny story. This “laugh in the voice” technique served him well when 20th Century Fox hired him to narrate the coming-attractions trailers for Laurel and Hardy movies. He later used the conspiratorial chuckle frequently when surprising someone on his programs.