Thursday

JUNE 9TH


HAPPY BIRTHDAY COLE PORTER!!

BIRTHDAYS


1891
Cole Porter
composer/pianist
b. Peru, IN, USA

d. Oct. 15, 1964, Santa Monica, CA, USA.
né: Cole Albert Porter.
An avowed homosexual, his songs first appeared in a 1915 Broadway show. During WW1, Porter lived the high life in Paris, France, and wrote home telling everybody that he was serving in the French Foreign Legion. (he thus avoided serving in the U. S. Armed Forces during WW1). During the 1920s, he was "hanging out" and living lavishly in Europe, as the husband of a wealthy American woman. In 1928, he returned to the 'States' permanently. In 1937, his legs were damaged due to a horse riding accident, and many operations were to no avail.

Though he endured numerous operations for the rest of his life (he never could walk again), he finally lost his right leg in 1958, just four years after his wife died. Remarkably, living with all the pain did not prevent him from composing one hit song after another. Among his legacy are such tunes as "Let's Do It", "I'm in Love Again", "You Do Something to Me", "What Is This Thing Called Love", "Love for Sale", "Anything Goes", "You're the Top", "Begin the Beguine", and "Count Your Blessings". Cole was age 72 when he died.


Cole Porter Biography

~ by Ron Wynn
Many arguments could be generated over whether Cole Porter or Irving Berlin should be considered America's greatest tunesmith. Both wrote music and lyrics; it's clearly a pick 'em situation. Porter had violin and piano lessons as a child, pursued undergraduate studies at Yale (where he penned fight songs that endure to this day such as "Bulldog"), and studied law and music at Harvard, all courtesy of a rich grandfather. His grandfather was appalled Porter would consider music as a career and never forgave him.

Porter was in the French army during World War I, and spent the '20s in Paris as the husband of a wealthy woman. He began scoring hits in that decade, though "I'm in Love Again," didn't click until 1929, though Porter wrote it in 1924. The list of Porter shows and films is immense; his lyrics were literate, sophisticated, yet could be charming, suggestive, even naughty. His first show was Paris in 1928; it included "Let's Do It." That was followed by Frenchmen in 1929 containing "You Do Something to Me." Porter returned to New York in 1930, but was a lifelong Parisian in his heart. Wake Up and Dream, The New Yorkers, The Gay Divorcee, Jubilee, Leave It to Me, and Kiss Me Kate are only a few of his marvelous shows.


The song list is just as impressive; "What Is This Thing Called Love," "Love for Sale," "Anything Goes," "You're the Top," "Begin the Beguine," and "Count Your Blessings," for starters. There were also such films as Silk Stockings, Born to Dance, Broadway Melody of 1940, High Society, and Night and Day.


Porter's legs were crushed by a horse in 1937, he endured numerous operations the rest of his life, as well as being a semi-invalid. He finally lost his right leg in 1958, only four years after his wife died. But his songs live on; numerous anthologies and songbooks devoted to his music have been issued and are available on CD, including the Smithsonian four-disc set issued in 1993.


Cole Wide Web - the Cole Porter Resource Site
Cole Porter - Wikipedia
The Cole Porter Reference Guide
Gay Greats - Cole Porter
Cole Porter - About the Musician and Composer | American Masters | PBS
The Painful Life of Cole Porter



1912
Buddy Feyne, songwriter
b. New York, NY, USA.
Worked with: Louis Jordan.
Buddy Feyne (1912 - 1998) was a composer and lyricist of the swing era.
He penned the lyrics for "Tuxedo Junction" and "The Jersey Bounce" - both of which were top of the Hit Parade and both are standards. These songs and many others have been recorded by artists as diverse as Glenn Miller, Joe Williams, The Manhattan Transfer, Ella Fitzgerald, Gene Autry, Nat King Cole, Louis Armstrong, The Andrews Sisters, Frankie Avalon, Joe Jackson, George Benson and Boz Scaggs.
He was born Bernard Feinstein in New York City, the youngest son of immigrants Solomon and Sarah Feinstein. His older brother, Irving, befriended Milton Berle, who advised Bernard that a Jewish name would prevent him from succeeding in the music business, and summarily changed his name to Buddy Feyne.
Feyne worked out of the Brill Building in New York City, writing songs for Lewis Music Publishers, one of the few companies which published "Race music", the term for songs created by black artists. In 1939, Erskine Hawkins and his band introduced "Tuxedo Junction" at the Savoy Ballroom, in New York, which was an immediate hit.
When it was decided to add words to the music, the publisher asked several different lyricists to propose words for the tune. Feyne met Hawkins and asked what the name referred to. It was named for a whistle stop spot on the "Chitlin' circuit" in Alabama. When he learned the meaning of the song, the lyrics came easily, and his were selected. The song was recorded by Glenn Miller, the Andrews Sisters, Jan Savitt and other orchestras. Later it became the theme song of The Manhattan Transfer, who met Buddy in 1978. Buddy played the original piano solo for them from the Miller Band and they changed their arrangement to match the original. They maintained a close friendship for the last twenty years of Feyne's life.
Feyne continued to write lyrics for black composers such as Erskine Hawkins, Bill Johnson, Dud Bascomb, Bobby Plater, Tiny Bradshaw and Edward Johnson. "Dolimite" by the Hawkins band on the Bluebird label was recorded by Jimmy Dorsey for Decca (1940). Feyne became a member of the American Society of Composers and Publishers (ASCAP) in 1940. He used the nom de plume "Robert B. Wright" when he penned the lyrics for "After Hours", a haunting blues piece composed by Avery Parrish. "Jersey Bounce" followed soon after. He wrote the lyrics to the Glenn Miller hit "I Dreamt I Dwelt in Harlem" in 1941, with music by Jerry Gray. He wrote with many other composers, sang on the radio, and was a writer-producer of the series "Rhythm School of the Air".
When he was drafted in World War II, he served in the Pacific in the 77th Infantry Division and was awarded the Bronze Star. As his regiment was too far for the USO to reach he also wrote, conducted and performed in Army shows in the Philippines. After the war, he collaborated on several musicals with Harry Revel, Bill Harrington and Bill Baker; wrote and produced for television; and composed "Time for Fun", an album of children's songs. In 1954, Feyne collaborated with Maurice Shapiro on "Why", recorded by Nat "King" Cole and Karen Chandler.
Feyne continued writing through the 80's. In the 60's he teamed with Denny McReynolds, writing a series of swing ballads. He also wrote with Joe Williams, who recorded their song "Everybody Wants to be Loved" and performed it on the Joey Bishop Show. Next he teamed with Bill Baker, writing numerous songs, albums, scoring films, "Diary of a Stewardess" and "Dead End Dolls" and they also show "Up Your Alley". In addition to songs, he also wrote special material for The Ed Sullivan Tribute at the Lambs Club. Producer Harry Delmar worked with Buddy on producing "Up Your Alley".
Over his life, Feyne wrote more than 400 songs. Co-writers included Milton Berle, Harry Revel, Bill Harrington, Raymond Scott, Stan Worth, Al Sherman, Ken Carson, Bill Baker, Joe Williams, Al Sherman and Peter Tinturin. His songs are recorded by myriad artists and also appear in films.
Artists who recorded Feyne's songs include: Cab Calloway, Lester Young, Erskine Hawkins, Gene Autry, Henry Mancini, Red Norvo, Bob Crosby,Benny Goodman, Glenn Miller, BBC Dance Band, Kay Kyser, Ozzie Nelson, Teddy Powell, Alvino Rey, Joe Williams, The King Sisters, Gene Krupa, Frankie Avalon, Tuxedo Junction, Ella Fitzgerald, Joe Jackson, LA Jazz Choir, The Manhattan Transfer and Nat King Cole.
Buddy Feyne
Buddy Feyne - Big Band Lyricist
Obituary: Buddy Feyne - Arts & Entertainment - The Independent



1911

Sanford Gold, Piano
b. Cleveland, OH, USA
What the music industry means by a "gold record" is obviously not an obscure jazz piano platter briefly available on the indie Prestige label in the '50s. To the punster, whose motivation is stupidity rather than commercial success, such a description is perfect for the lone solo project released by Sanford Gold, a pianist who began performing in the '30s but nonetheless basically kept up with progressive developments in improvised music through the '50s.
Gold was found in New York City by the mid-'30s after mining the hometown music scene in Cleveland for several years, attaining status as a bandleader. His partners in the Big Apple were an interesting blend, including tenor saxophonistBabe Russin and the brilliant composer and inventor Raymond Scott. The pianist's skill at accompaniment seemed in favor with instrumentalists of the former ilk, and as the years went on Gold would back tenor players as formidable as Don Byas and Stan Getz.

The pianist parked his bench in Uncle Sam's Army during the Second World War; prior to that assignment he had been employed by the CBS network. He would dig back into that kind of work, this time at rival NBC, from the late '40s through the mid-'50s. Gold's Prestige outing was entitled Piano D'Or -- c'est droll, n'est pas? -- and sparkled with versions of standards such as "I'll Remember April" and "In a Sentimental Mood." In his later years he has concentrated on teaching, establishing a reputation that can certainly be said to be "good as Gold."

Biography
~ Eugene Chadbourne



1902
Skip James
Nehemiah Curtis "Skip" James (June 9, 1902 – October 3, 1969) was an American Delta blues singer, guitarist, pianist and songwriter. Born in Bentonia, Mississippi, United States, he died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

He first learned to play guitar from another bluesman from the area, Henry Stuckey. His guitar playing is noted for its dark, minor sound, played in an open D-minor tuning with an intricate fingerpicking technique. James first recorded for Paramount Records in 1931, but these recordings sold poorly due to the Great Depression, and he drifted into obscurity. After a long absence from the public eye, James was "rediscovered" in 1964 by three blues enthusiasts, helping further the blues and folk music revival of the 1950s and early 1960s. During this period, James appeared at several folk and blues festivals and gave live concerts around the country, also recording several albums for various record labels.



His songs have influenced several generations of musicians, being adapted or covered by Kansas Joe McCoy, Robert Johnson, Alan Wilson, Cream, Deep Purple, Chris Thomas King, Alvin Youngblood Hart, The Derek Trucks Band, Beck, Big Sugar, Eric Clapton, John Martyn, Lucinda Williams and Rory Block. He is hailed as "one of the seminal figures of the blues."


Early years
James was born near Bentonia, Mississippi. His father was a converted bootlegger turned preacher. As a youth, James heard local musicians such as Henry Stuckey and brothers Charlie and Jesse Sims and began playing the organ in his teens. He worked on road construction and levee-building crews in his native Mississippi in the early 1920s, and wrote what is perhaps his earliest song, "Illinois Blues", about his experiences as a laborer.

He began playing guitar in open D-minor tuning.



1920s and 1930s
In early 1931, James auditioned for Jackson, Mississippi, record shop owner and talent scout H. C. Speir, who placed blues performers with a variety of record labels including Paramount Records. On the strength of this audition, James traveled to Grafton, Wisconsin to record for Paramount. James's 1931 work is considered idiosyncratic among pre-war blues recordings, and formed the basis of his reputation as a musician.

As is typical of his era, James recorded a variety of material – blues and spirituals, cover versions and original compositions – frequently blurring the lines between genres and sources. For example, "I'm So Glad" was derived from a 1927 song by Art Sizemore and George A. Little entitled "So Tired", which had been recorded in 1928 by both Gene Austin and Lonnie Johnson (the latter under the title "I'm So Tired of Livin' All Alone"). Biographer Stephen Calt, echoing the opinion of several critics, considered the finished product totally original, "one of the most extraordinary examples of fingerpicking found in guitar music".


Several of the Grafton recordings, such as "Hard Time Killing Floor Blues", "Devil Got My Woman", "Jesus Is A Mighty Good Leader", and "22-20 Blues" (the basis for Robert Johnson's better-known "32-20 Blues", and the band name for the English group 22-20s), have proven similarly influential. Very few original copies of James's Paramount 78 RPMs have survived.


The Great Depression struck just as James' recordings were hitting the market. Sales were poor as a result, and James gave up performing the blues to become the choir director in his father's church. James himself was later ordained as a minister in both the Baptist and Methodist denominations, but the extent of his involvement in religious activities is unknown.


Disappearance, rediscovery, and legacy
For the next thirty years, James recorded nothing and drifted in and out of music. He was virtually unknown to listeners until about 1960. In 1964 blues enthusiasts John Fahey, Bill Barth, and Henry Vestine found him in a hospital in Tunica, Mississippi. According to Calt, the "rediscovery" of both James and of Son House at virtually the same moment was the start of the "blues revival" in the US. In July 1964 James, along with other rediscovered performers, appeared at the Newport Folk Festival. Several photographs by Dick Waterman captured this first performance in over 30 years. Throughout the remainder of the decade, he recorded for the Takoma, Melodeon, and Vanguard labels and played various engagements until his death in Philadelphia from cancer in 1969.

Although James was not initially covered as frequently as other rediscovered musicians, British rock band Cream recorded "I'm So Glad" (a studio version and a live version), providing James with the only windfall of his career. Deep Purple also covered "I'm So Glad," on Shades of Deep Purple. John Martyn covered "Devil Got My Woman", titled as "I'd Rather be the Devil" on his album Solid Air and played it live throughout his career. English blues rock band 22-20s named themselves after "22-20 Blues."

Since his death, James's music has become more available and prevalent than during his lifetime – his 1931 recordings, along with several rediscovery recordings and concerts, have found their way onto numerous compact discs, drifting in and out of print. His influence is still felt among contemporary bluesmen. Gregg Allman recorded 'Devil Got My Woman' on his 2011 "Low Country Blues". James also left a mark on Hollywood, as well, with Chris Thomas King's cover of "Hard Time Killing Floor Blues" on O Brother, Where Art Thou?, and the 1931 "Devil Got My Woman" featured in the plot and soundtrack of Ghost World. In recent times, British post-rock band Hope of the States released a song partially focused on the life of Skip James entitled "Nehemiah", which charted at number 30 in the UK Singles Chart. "He's a Mighty Good Leader" was also covered by Beck on his 1994 album One Foot in the Grave.


In 2004, Wim Wenders directed the film The Soul of a Man (the second part of The Blues, a series produced by Martin Scorsese), focusing on the music of Blind Willie Johnson, J.B. Lenoir and Skip James.[10] Skip James was not filmed before the 1960s. Keith B. Brown took the part of young Skip James in the scenes about his youth in the documentary. Wenders used many songs from James, some performed by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Beck, Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, James 'Blood' Ulmer, T-Bone Burnett, Eagle Eye Cherry, Shemekia Copeland, Garland Jeffreys, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Los Lobos, Bonnie Raitt, Lou Reed, Marc Ribot, Lucinda Williams, and Cassandra Wilson.






Notable Events Occurring
On This Date Include:





1950.
Joe Burke 
composer died in Upper Darby, PA, USA.
(b. March 18, 1884, . Philadelphia, PA, USA).





1993.
Mort Goode
producer/songwriter
died in New York, NY, USA.
Age: 80.



Songs Recorded/Released
On This Date Include:



1921



All Star Trio and their Orchestra

1922




Edith Wilson and Johnny Dunn's Jazz Hounds

1924




Jelly Roll Morton

Jelly Roll Morton - Tom Cat Blues




Ted Weems and his Orchestra


Paul Whiteman and his Orchestra
San



1925




Margaret Johnson - 
Death House Blues


1925




The California Ramblers - I'm Gonna Charleston Back To Charleston


Harry Reser and his Orchestra




1927




Memphis Jug Band - Sometimes I Think I Love You


University Six - 
Ain't That A Grand And Glorious Feeling?



Eddie Peabody



1928




Martha Copeland - 
Desert Blues




Edwards "Ukulele Ike" - Reaching For Someone (And Not Finding Anyone There)


1930




Bessie Smith


Paul Whiteman and his Orchestra






1931




Dave's Harlem Highlights - 
Loveless Love



1937




Fats Waller and his Rhythm

LYRICS:


You're The Top!
~Cole Porter

At words poetic, I'm so pathetic
That I always have found it best,
Instead of getting 'em off my chest,
To let 'em rest unexpressed,
I hate parading my serenading
As I'll probably miss a bar,
But if this ditty is not so pretty
At least it'll tell you
How great you are.

You're the top!
You're the Coliseum.
You're the top!
You're the Louver Museum.
You're a melody from a symphony by Strauss
You're a Bendel bonnet,
A Shakespeare's sonnet,
You're Mickey Mouse.
You're the Nile,
You're the Tower of Pisa,
You're the smile on the Mona Lisa
I'm a worthless check, a total wreck, a flop,
But if, baby, I'm the bottom you're the top!

Your words poetic are not pathetic.
On the other hand, babe, you shine,
And I can feel after every line
A thrill divine
Down my spine.
Now gifted humans like Vincent Youmans
Might think that your song is bad,
But I got a notion
I'll second the motion
And this is what I'm going to add;

You're the top!
You're Mahatma Gandhi.
You're the top!
You're Napoleon Brandy.
You're the purple light
Of a summer night in Spain,
You're the National Gallery
You're Garbo's salary,
You're cellophane.
You're sublime,
You're turkey dinner,
You're the time, the time of a Derby winner
I'm a toy balloon that’s fated soon to pop
But if, baby, I'm the bottom,
You're the top!

You're the top!
You're an arrow collar
You're the top!
You're a Coolidge dollar,
You're the nimble tread
Of the feet of Fred Astaire,
You're an O'Neill drama,

You're Whistler's mama!
You're camembert.

You're a rose,
You're Inferno's Dante,

You're the nose
On the great Durante.
I'm just in a way,
As the French would say, "de trop".
But if, baby, I'm the bottom,
You're the top!

You're the top!
You're a dance in Bali.
You're the top!
You're a hot tamale.
You're an angel, you,
Simply too, too, too diveen,
You're a Boticcelli,
You're Keats,
You're Shelly!

You're Ovaltine!
You're a boom,
You're the dam at Boulder,
You're the moon,
Over Mae West's shoulder,
I'm the nominee of the G.O.P.

Or GOP!

But if, baby, I'm the bottom,
You're the top!

You're the top!
You're a Waldorf salad.
You're the top!
You're a Berlin ballad.
You're the boats that glide
On the sleepy Zuider Zee,
You're an old Dutch master,

You're Lady Astor,
You're broccoli!
You're romance,
You're the steppes of Russia,
You're the pants, on a Roxy usher,
I'm a broken doll, a fol-de-rol, a blop,

But if, baby, I'm the bottom,
You're the top!

TubaGirlFin
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