Lou Albano, original voice of Mario, dies age 76

albano2Before Charles Martinet made Mario sound like an eccentric Italian ESL student from the land stereotypical accents, our 8-bit hero had another voice: Captain Lou Albano.

Lou Albano was a professional wrestling, a manager, an actor and more, but in 1989 most young gamers knew him only for his role as Mario on the Super Mario Bros Super Show. In contrast with Martinet’s performance, Albano’s Mario was a little more.. “Brooklyn” in accent.  The show only lasted in syndication for one season, and although it was followed by a “Super Mario Bros. 3” show and a “New Super Mario World” cartoon, neither of these shows featured Mr. Albano.  Those of us who grew up with the show know it was cheesy and full of bad puns – but many still stick by Captain Lou Albano as the first, and true voice of Mario.