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Topic: How to pronounce "Ronald Reagan"
Message: Posted by: stoneunhinged (Aug 27, 2010 01:45PM)
Crazy question, I suppose, but my music partner Hans insists that there was a big to-do in the German press regarding the pronunciation of Ronald Reagan's name. The theory (conspiracy theory?) goes like this:

until Reagan ran for President, he had always gone by the name Ronald "Ree-gun"--as an actor and as governor.

I have never heard this before, and it seems ridiculous to me. I told Hans so. He stuck to his guns.

So: without looking it up (because surely there must be some old cigarette commercials on YouTube where Ronnie says, "Hello, I'm..."), what have any of you heard about this?

Weigh in without looking it up. Then, after the thread has progressed, let's look for those old cigarette commercials.
Message: Posted by: Whit Haydn (Aug 27, 2010 02:01PM)
It's been Raygun as long as I can remember.
Message: Posted by: tommy (Aug 27, 2010 02:12PM)
The Gipper
Message: Posted by: S2000magician (Aug 27, 2010 02:13PM)
Got me.

I do know that [i]Sam Yorty[/i] pronounced the city of which he was mayor for twelve years [i]los-ang-guh-less[/i].

I also know that [i]Tom Lehrer[/i], in his song [b][i]George Murphy[/i][/b] (on the album [b]That Was The Year That Was[/b], released in 1965), pronounced it [i]ray'-gun[/i] (rhyming it with [i]Helen Gahagan[/i]); that's at least some evidence that [i]Reagan[/i] pronounced it [i]ray'-gun[/i] before running for President.
Message: Posted by: LobowolfXXX (Aug 27, 2010 02:21PM)
I'd never heard it as anything other than Ray-Gun. This is consistent with his Irish heritage (e.g. the Irish poet Yeats rhymes sounds like the American novelist Yates, not like the British poet Keats; I believe this stems from The Great Vowel Shift). Without having looked it up, I tend not to believe Hans.
Message: Posted by: S2000magician (Aug 27, 2010 02:24PM)
[i]Hans[/i] is untrustworthy; we should never believe anything [i]Hans[/i] says; actuarially, he's a bad risk.
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Aug 27, 2010 02:26PM)
[b]Ray[/b]-Gan. [b]Guaranteed[/b]. I've been to the Reagan Library (fantastic!!!) and he also helped me once with a Disney promotion I produced.
Message: Posted by: HerbLarry (Aug 27, 2010 02:32PM)
Either way Ray-Gun sounds much more "Don't screw with me cause I'm the President".
Message: Posted by: balducci (Aug 27, 2010 02:57PM)
[quote]
On 2010-08-27 14:45, stoneunhinged wrote:
Crazy question, I suppose, but my music partner Hans insists that there was a big to-do in the German press regarding the pronunciation of Ronald Reagan's name. The theory (conspiracy theory?) goes like this:

until Reagan ran for President, he had always gone by the name Ronald "Ree-gun"--as an actor and as governor.

I have never heard this before, and it seems ridiculous to me. I told Hans so. He stuck to his guns.

So: without looking it up (because surely there must be some old cigarette commercials on YouTube where Ronnie says, "Hello, I'm..."), what have any of you heard about this?

Weigh in without looking it up. Then, after the thread has progressed, let's look for those old cigarette commercials.
[/quote]
http://forum.dvdtalk.com/other-talk/463993-pronunciation-ronald-reagan.html

"I just got the new Merv Griffin DVD set. cool set by the way. I found it interesting that 2 times so far in watching less than half the interviews Ronald Reagan's name came up. In the 60s early 70s a couple of times Merv and Sammy Davis Jr and I believe John Wayne referred to him as Ronald Ree-gun not Ray-gun. Was this the common pronunciation at the time? Anyone know? Why did it change? How did Ronnie feel about it?"
Message: Posted by: balducci (Aug 27, 2010 03:03PM)
Okay, so Hans' theory sounds nutty to me. However ...

It sounds as though Reagan knew how his name was pronounced, but others in the movie / tv / entertainment industry and in politics were not so sure initially. So it seems entirely reasonable to me that if his name was ever mentioned over the credits at the end of a movie, some voice over announcer might have easily mispronounced it.

[url]http://www.people.com/people/archive/article/0,,20080602,00.html[/url]

Blarney
Their ancestors are from Ireland, but somehow President Ronald Reagan and Treasury Secretary Donald Regan managed to be born into families of different persuasions concerning the spelling and pronunciation of their name. Regan reports that the President talked to him about their name problem when the Secretary was appointed late last year and even had a joke ready for the occasion. "When I was first running for office and wasn't well known," Reagan began, "this gentleman was preparing to introduce me at a luncheon in New York the next day." The man tossed in bed trying to figure out if the candidate's name was pronounced 'Ree-gun' or 'Ray-gun.' Finally he got up and went for a walk, and ran into Henny Youngman out walking his dog. He confided the problem to Youngman. Henny asked whether the candidate was Irish. Told he was, Youngman declared, 'It's Ray-gun, I guarantee it. I know how those Irishmen pronounce their names. It's definitely 'Ray-gun.' " The gentleman thanked Henny, then politely admired his dog and asked what kind it was. "Thank you," said Youngman. "it's a bagel."
Message: Posted by: Scott Cram (Aug 27, 2010 03:08PM)
It didn't help with the pronunciation any when he appointed Donald Regan (pronounced "Ree-gun") as his 1st term Treasury Secretary.
Message: Posted by: Michael Baker (Aug 27, 2010 03:32PM)
Back during his Star Wars defense system days, we started calling him Ray Gun. I actually developed a magic routine of Ronald Ray Gun vs Gadaffi Duck. I actually found a picture of Daffy Duck with a box full of rockets (fireworks)!

The trick invoved a deck that exploded to reveal a chosen card. Lots of fun, but the topical-ness soon became obsolete.
Message: Posted by: Skip Way (Aug 27, 2010 03:48PM)
I used to watch Ronnie when he hosted Death Valley Days as well as his western films. As far back as I can recall it's always been Ray-gan.
Message: Posted by: jazzy snazzy (Aug 27, 2010 04:19PM)
Good news! I'm not crazy afterall.

When I was a kid, he was Ronald REEGAN. Here's the proof...
http://www.tcm.com/mediaroom/index.jsp?cid=178703

Unable to locate any Death Valley Days clips yet but you will notice the announcer in this GE clip seems rather tentative in his pronunciation. This was during Reagan's transition to politics. I'm 99.99% sure he used to pronounce it With the long e sound in the fifties.
http://www.ge.com/reagan/video.html
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Aug 27, 2010 04:37PM)
Unless mispronounced his family always used Raygun. I new a guy pronounced Ree gun and his name was spelled Regan...
Message: Posted by: landmark (Aug 27, 2010 06:02PM)
It's pronounced Dai.
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Aug 27, 2010 06:06PM)
Landster, you don't realize how close I came to that same answer.
Message: Posted by: Bill Hilly (Aug 27, 2010 10:04PM)
On the Woodstock album, they call him Rrraaayyygun-Zap.

"He's a drugstore trick-drivin' man...."
Message: Posted by: ClintonMagus (Aug 27, 2010 11:01PM)
I know everything, and it's always been RAY-gn...
Message: Posted by: Michael Baker (Aug 28, 2010 12:36AM)
[quote]
On 2010-08-28 00:01, ClintonMagus wrote:
I know everything, and it's always been RAY-gn...
[/quote]
LOL!!
Message: Posted by: Nosher (Aug 28, 2010 01:36AM)
By the time of the Doonesbury "In search of Reagan's Brain", it was definitely Ray-gun.
Message: Posted by: Skip Way (Aug 28, 2010 05:54AM)
Here's a 50's clip of What's My Line with Ronnie as the mystery guest. At the end they pronounced his name as Ray-gan.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p5D6RnMbfHI&feature=related
Message: Posted by: Robin DeWitt (Aug 28, 2010 03:52PM)
Listening to Reagan pronouncing his own name it seems that he did not place a lot of emphasis on the "a". Rather than pronouncing the 'a' as in apple, he appears to dampen it to an 'a' as in automobile. Perhaps this is why some people, in referring to him, would pronounce the name as Reegan. This is just my guess. I've not given a lot of thought.
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Aug 29, 2010 10:55AM)
I suppose those that say Reegan also say NukeYOUlar and FARve...;-)
Message: Posted by: Chessmann (Aug 29, 2010 04:24PM)
Ronald Reagan was mentioned in a black and white episode of "The Beverly Hillbillies".

Jethro says it, and pronounces it "REE-gun".

But coming from Jethro Bodine, we're not really closer to being certain of the correct pronunciation, are we? :)
Message: Posted by: Magnus Eisengrim (Aug 29, 2010 06:47PM)
[quote]
On 2010-08-29 11:55, Doug Higley wrote:
I suppose those that say Reegan also say NukeYOUlar and FARve...;-)
[/quote]

Has anyone heard Brett Favre say his own name?
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Aug 29, 2010 07:32PM)
No, how does he say it?
Message: Posted by: TomBoleware (Aug 29, 2010 08:15PM)
I'd holler and ask him, but he ain't home right now. :)

I guess I say Far-Ve

and ...Ray-gun.

But me and him say a lot of thangs many wouldn't understand.

Tom
Message: Posted by: Magnus Eisengrim (Aug 29, 2010 08:30PM)
[quote]
On 2010-08-29 20:32, MagicSanta wrote:
No, how does he say it?
[/quote]

Never heard him. (I wouldn't recognize him in my living room either.) But I'm guessing that all the sportscasters say his name "farv" because he does too. Can anyone confirm this?

John
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Aug 29, 2010 08:37PM)
I've never heard it any other way..... my name, oddly, gets mispronounced a lot.
Message: Posted by: TomBoleware (Aug 29, 2010 08:42PM)
I live close by and see him around town, but honestly I can't remember hearing him say it. Everybody knows him and he would have no reason to say it. But I would think it would be "farv." Most around here do say it that way.

Tom
Message: Posted by: Magnus Eisengrim (Aug 29, 2010 08:42PM)
[quote]
On 2010-08-29 21:37, MagicSanta wrote:
I've never heard it any other way..... my name, oddly, gets mispronounced a lot.
[/quote]

They put the n at the end?
Message: Posted by: ClintonMagus (Aug 29, 2010 08:49PM)
[quote]
On 2010-08-29 11:55, Doug Higley wrote:
I suppose those that say Reegan also say NukeYOUlar and FARve...;-)
[/quote]

It IS pronounced "FARve"...

... and "RAY-gn"...
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Aug 29, 2010 08:59PM)
No, Nevets, how the heck can people mess that up? They do Neeveets, Neh-vets (which is correct). Then there are the indy car fans who somehow think it is Nayey, how do you get Nayey out of the letter v in the middle?
Message: Posted by: Chessmann (Aug 29, 2010 09:03PM)
[quote]
On 2010-08-29 21:42, Magnus Eisengrim wrote:
[quote]
On 2010-08-29 21:37, MagicSanta wrote:
I've never heard it any other way..... my name, oddly, gets mispronounced a lot.
[/quote]

They put the n at the end?
[/quote]

Dang, you beat me to it! :)
Message: Posted by: Regan (Sep 2, 2010 09:28AM)
Well, I know that Ronald Reagan was pronounced both Ray-gun, and Ree-gun. My Dad was a huge fan of western movies, and Ronald Reagan was one of his favorite actors. He acually named my brother Ronnie, and me Regan. He had no idea at that time that Ronald Reagan would become President of The United States some day!

He says that he first only heard the actor's name pronounced Ree-gun, but later started hearing some say Ray-gun. He liked, Ree-gun, and found out that Regan meant "Little King". So, my parents used that spelling and thought people could more easily pronounce it correctly. Well, so much for that idea. People have a tough time with it, and I have had my name pronounced in seemingly every possible way. Sometimes I don't know where people get the names they call me!

Linda Blair's character in The Excorsist was named, "Regan". It still didn't help people learn to pronounce my name. I've gotten used to it, and I don't pay much attention to it anymore.

Regan
(Pronouced, "Ree-gun")
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Sep 2, 2010 03:59PM)
Ewwwww Ewwwwwww! Linda Blair! Man she is cute!
Message: Posted by: jazzy snazzy (Sep 2, 2010 05:43PM)
[quote]
On 2010-09-02 16:59, MagicSanta wrote:
Ewwwww Ewwwwwww! Linda Blair! Man she is cute!
[/quote]
Ya, she could really turn heads.