Showing posts with label Isham Jones. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Isham Jones. Show all posts




Mae West, singer/actror/playwright
b. New York (Brooklyn), NY, USA.
d. Nov. 22, 1980, Hollywood, CA, USA.
(complications from strokes).
née: Mary Jane Mae West.
During her career, Mae appeared in Burlesque, vaudeville, Broadway and movies. Among her films are 'She Done Him Wrong' (1933, a film which made Cary Grant a star), and 'My Little Chickadee' (1940, co-starring W. C. Fields). As a playwright, her works include 'Sex' (1926, for which she was arrested and spent ten days in jail on obscenity charges), and 'Diamond Lil' (1928, a huge Broadway success).

The 1978 film 'Sextette' was her last. Her demise came when she suffered a series of Strokes. Her autobiography, entitled "Goodness had nothing to do with it", is a line she spoke in her very first film "Night After Night". A hat check girl, after seeing Mae's jewlery. exclaimed, "Goodness! What lovely diamonds!" Mae replied, "Goodness had nothing to do with it, dearie." Although Mae had only a small part, she displayed a wit that would to make her world famous. Movie-goers fell in love with the first woman to make racy comments on film. Her co-star, George Raft, said of Mae, "She stole everything but the cameras."
Walter Brown, vocals
b. Dallas, TX, USA.
Worked with Jay McShann Blues singer Walter Brown fronted the roaring Jay McShann Orchestra (which included young alto saxist Charlie Parker) in 1941, when the roaring Kansas City aggregation cut their classic "Confessin' The Blues" and "Hootie Blues" for Decca. The Dallas native remained with McShann from 1941 to '45 before going solo (with less successful results).
~ Bill Dahl

Larry Clinton, leader/arranger/composer
b. Brooklyn, NY, USA.
d. May 2, 1985, Tucson, AZ, USA.
Tag: "The Old Dipsy Doodler".
Larry Clinton (August 17, 1909May 2, 1985) was a trumpeter who became a prominent American bandleader.
Clinton was born in Brooklyn, New York. He became a versatile musician, capable of playing trumpet, trombone, and clarinet. While in his twenties, he became a prolific arranger for dance orchestras; bandleaders Tommy Dorsey, Jimmy Dorsey, Glen Gray, Louis Armstrong, and Bunny Berigan all used Larry Clinton charts.
His first stint as a bandleader was from 1937 to 1941, and he recorded a string of hits for Victor Records. The Clinton band's repertoire was split between pop tunes of the day ("I Double Dare You," "Summer Souvenirs," etc.), ambitious instrumentals penned by Clinton (the most popular, "A Study in Brown," begat four sequels in different "colors"). and swing adaptations of classical compositions. This last category swept the industry, and orchestras everywhere were "swinging the classics" by adding pop lyrics to melodies by Debussyand Tchaikovsky. His version of Debussy’s "Reverie", with vocalist Bea Wain, was particularly popular. Entitled "My Reverie", his version peaked at #1 on Billboard's Record Buying Guide in 1938.
Clinton's band was predominantly a recording group that also played college proms and hotel ballrooms. On the strength of Clinton's record hit "The Dipsy Doodle," Vitaphone and Paramount Pictures signed the band to star in three 10-minute theatrical films. All three were filmed in New York.
In 1941 Clinton and his band appeared in six short musical films, designed for then-popular "movie jukeboxes." (The films were ultimately released as Soundies in 1943.) This was one of his last jobs as a bandleader; he quit the music business upon the outbreak of World War II, and became as a flight instructor. He resumed his musical career and enjoyed further success as a bandleader from 1948 to 1950. He remained active in the music business until 1961. He died in 1985 inTucson, Arizona, at the age of 75.

Jimmy Sherman
b. Williamsport, PA, USA.
d. 1975.
Jazz pianist James Sherman played in various swing groups from the mid- to late '30s, but is best known for his hand in composing the jazz standard "Lover Man." Co-written with Jimmy Davis and Roger Ramirez, "Lover Man" was first recorded by Billie Holiday, and has since been recorded by countless jazz vocalists, including Sarah Vaughan, Carmen McRae, Lena Horne, Betty Carter, Shirley Horn, and more. In addition to playing with Billie Holiday, Sherman also played piano for other swing groups recording during the mid- to late '30s, including bands fronted by Stuff Smith, Lil Armstrong, and Mildred Bailey.
~ Joslyn Layne

Frank Sylvano
Frank Francesco Lanzalotti Sylvano
B. Aug. 17, 1901, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, USA
D.  Sep. 1, 1964, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, USA
The son of Joseph Lanzalotti, and Mary Magdelene Sylvano, his surname transitioned from his father's to his mother's with the name Sullivan also used briefly in the midst of the transitions. In the 1920 US Census he is listed as a railroad laborer but by the 1930 Census he is married to Lenore with daughters Jean and Joan. Brother Scotty is also living with them. His occupation is listed a singer with an orchestra. He was a well known jazz vocalist in his day and the band's recordings are still in demand.

"The Isham Jones band made a series of popular gramophone records for Brunswick throughout the 1920s. He led one of the most popular dance bands in the 1920s and 1930s.
From 1929 to 1932, his Brunswick recordings became even more sophisticated with often very unusual arrangements (by Gordon Jenkins and others; Jones was his own arranger early on, but cultivated others for offbeat arrangements). During this period, Jones started featuring violinist Eddie Stone as one of his regular vocalists. ... His other vocalists included Frank Sylvano, Billy Scott, Arthur Jarrett and Stone."
~quoted from the Wikipedia article about Isham Jones.
Frank Sylvano
Notable Events Occurring
On This Date Include:

James "Buddy" Butts, vocals
died in Norfolk, VA, USA.
Age: 25.
Member: 'Norfolk Jubilee'

Tab Smith, arranger/alto sax
died in St. Louis, MO, USA.

Lyricist Ira Gershwin
dies in Hollywood, CA, USA.
The Official Website of George & Ira Gershwin

Singer Billy Murray died.
Birth name: William Thomas Murray
Born: May 25, 1877
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Origin New York City
Died: August 17, 1954 (aged 77)
Jones Beach, New York, United States
Instruments Vocals
Years active 1897–1944
Labels Edison, OkeH, many others

William Thomas Murray (May 25, 1877 – August 17, 1954) was one of the most popular singers in the United States in the early 20th century.[1] While he received star billing in vaudeville, he was best known for his prolific work in the recording studio, making records for almost every record label of the era.
Billy Murray (singer)

Hammie Nixon, Blues harmonica
died in Brownsville, TN, USA.
Age: 76.
Pearl Bailey, actress/singer
died in Philadelphia, PA, USA.
Age: 72 (Coronary).

"Wild" Bill Davis, organ/piano/arranger
died in Moorestown, NJ, USA.
Age: 77.
Worked with Louis Jordan
Songs Recorded/Released
On This Date Include:


Borbee's Jass Orchestra Paddle-Addle

Original Dixieland Jass Band - Barnyard Blues

Wilbur Sweatman's Jazz Orchestra - Rock-ABye Your Baby With A Dixie Melody

The Happy Six - South Sea Isles (Introducing "She's Just A Baby" from George White's Scandals of 1921)


Bailey's Lucky Seven - Chicago

Benson Orchestra of Chicago - Sobbin' Blues


Thomas Morris and his Seven Hot Babies - Ham Gravy
Sissle and Blake - Ukelele Lullaby

The Little Ramblers - And Then I Forget

My Cutey's Due At Two-To-Two Today


Texas Alexander - Evil Woman Blues

Isham Jones and his Orchestra - Sentimental Gentleman From Georgia
Frankie Trumbauer and his Orchestra

Fats Waller and his Rhythm - Don't Let It Bother You

You're Not the Only Oyster in the Stew
 (Johnny Burke / Harold Spina)

You're not the only oyster in the stew,
Not the only tea leaf in the tea;
However, I'm convinced,
Completely, fully, firmly convinced,
You're the only one for me!
You're not the only wrinkle in the prune,
You're not the only apple on the tree;
Judging all the facts,
Perfectly logical positive facts,
You're the only one for me!

 So well supplied, the first things I see, (oh mercy baby!)
Your smile is refreshing, kisses so unique!
When I'm 'round I'm susceptible and weak,
I loves ya, I loves ya, so to speak!

There's seven million people in New York,
Fifty million Frenchmen in Paree,
Not to mention serfs,
And English, Irish, Italians and Turks,
But you're the only one for me!
There's seven million people in New York,
Fifty million Frenchmen in Paree,
Not to mention English, Irish, Turks,
You're the only one for me!
Oh, (scat),
You're not the only oyster in the stew!

From the film "She Done Him Wrong" (1933)

Anyone can see what's the matter with me
I've been hurried and rushed off my feet
Never had a minute's repose from walking the street
So I've thought it out and there isn't any doubt
My conclusion is all for the best
I need someone who can supply comfort and some rest
A guy what takes his time, I'll go for any time
I'm a fast movin' gal who likes them slow
Got no use for fancy drivin', want to see a guy arrivin' in low.
I'd be satisfied, electrified to know a guy what takes his time
A hurry-up affair, I always give the air
Wouldn't give any rushin' gent a smile.
I would go for any singer who would condescend to linger awhile
What a lullaby would be supplied to have a guy what takes his time
A guy what takes his time, I'd go for any time
A hasty job really spoils a master's touch
I don't like a big commotion, I'm a demon for slow motion or such
Why should I deny that I would die to know a guy who takes his time
There isn't any fun in getting something done
If you're rushed when you have to make the grade
I can spot an amateur, appreciate a connesseur in his trade
Who would qualify, no alibi, to be the guy who takes his time

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Ma Rainey with her band in 1923. (Left to Right) Eddie Pollack, Albert Wynn, Thomas A. Dorsey, Dave Nelson, Gabriel Washington


Thomas Andrew Dorsey
aka: "Georgia Tom" "Barrelhouse Tom" "Texas Tommy"
Folk and Blues singer/guitarist b. Villa Rica, GA, USA
b. July 1st, 1899, Villa Rica Georgia.
d. Jan. 23, 1993, Chicago, Il.
Thomas Andrew Dorsey (July 1, 1899 – January 23, 1993) was known as "the father of black gospel music" and was at one time so closely associated with the field that songs written in the new style were sometimes known as "dorseys." Earlier in his life he was a leading blues pianist known as Georgia Tom. As formulated by Dorsey, gospel music combines Christian praise with the rhythms of jazz and the blues. His conception also deviates from what had been, to that time, standard hymnal practice by referring explicitly to the self, and the self's relation to faith and God, rather than the individual subsumed into the group via belief.

Dorsey, who was born in Villa Rica, Georgia, was the music director at Pilgrim Baptist Church in Chicago from 1932 until the late 1970s. His best-known composition, "Take My Hand, Precious Lord", was performed by Mahalia Jackson and was a favorite of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.. Another composition, "Peace in the Valley", was a hit for Red Foley in 1951 and has been performed by dozens of other artists, including Queen of Gospel Albertina Walker, Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash. Dorsey died in Chicago, aged 93. In 2002, the Library of Congress honored his album Precious Lord: New Recordings of the Great Songs of Thomas A. Dorsey (1973), by adding it to the United States National Recording Registry.

Life and career

Dorsey's father was a minister and his mother a piano teacher. He learned to play blues piano as a young man. After studying music formally in Chicago, he became an agent for Paramount Records. He put together a band for Ma Rainey called the "Wild Cats Jazz Band" in 1924. He started out playing at rent parties with the names Barrelhouse Tom and Texas Tommy, but he was most famous as Georgia Tom. As Georgia Tom, he teamed up with Tampa Red (Hudson Whittaker) with whom he recorded the raunchy 1928 hit record "Tight Like That", a sensation, eventually selling seven million copies. In all, he is credited with more than 400 blues and jazz songs. Dorsey began recording gospel music alongside blues in the mid-1920s. This led to his performing at the National Baptist Convention in 1930, and becoming the bandleader of two churches in the early 1930s.

His first wife, Nettie, who had been Rainey's wardrobe mistress, died in childbirth in 1932. Two days later the child, a son, also died. In his grief, he wrote his most famous song, one of the most famous of all gospel songs, "Precious Lord, Take My Hand". Unhappy with the treatment received at the hands of established publishers, Dorsey opened the first black gospel music publishing company, Dorsey House of Music. He also founded his own gospel choir and was a founder and first president of the National Convention of Gospel Choirs and Choruses.

His influence was not limited to African American music, as white musicians also followed his lead. "Precious Lord" has been recorded by Albertina Walker, Elvis Presley, Mahalia Jackson, Aretha Franklin, Clara Ward, Dorothy Norwood, Jim Reeves, Roy Rogers, and Tennessee Ernie Ford, Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash among hundreds of others. It was a favorite gospel song of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.; and was sung at the rally the night before his assassination, and, per his request, at his funeral by Mahalia Jackson. It was also a favorite of President Lyndon B. Johnson, who requested it to be sung at his funeral. Dorsey was also a great influence on other Chicago-based gospel artists such as Albertina Walker and The Caravans and Little Joey McClork.

Dorsey wrote "Peace in the Valley" for Mahalia Jackson in 1937, which also became a gospel standard. He was the first African American elected to the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame and also the first in the Gospel Music Association's Living Hall of Fame. In 2007, he was inducted as a charter member of the Gennett Records Walk of Fame in Richmond, Indiana. His papers are preserved at Fisk University, along with those of W.C. Handy, George Gershwin, and the Fisk Jubilee Singers. Dorsey's works have proliferated beyond performance, into the hymnals of virtually all American churches and of English-speaking churches worldwide. Thomas was a member of the Omega Psi Phi fraternity. He died in Chicago, Illinois, and was interred there in the Oak Woods Cemetery.
Honky Tonks, Hymns, & the Blues


Edward Anderson, Trumpet
b. Jacksonville, FL, USA.
Someone with "and" to the second power in his name might seem like he'd have alot to say, but the trumpet improvisations of "Andy" Edward Anderson were short and to the point. He grew up in Florida and began playing the horn at the age of ten. When he was 15 he began attending a college in Virginia, and was no doubt already comfortable studying with university professors, since his trumpet instructor from the beginning had been a college bandmaster. He was the principal trumpet in the St. Emma College orchestra. After graduating, he returned to Florida and began gigging with bandleader Lucky Roberts, luckily the fellow who had landed a regular gig at the Everglades Club in Palm Beach. Roberts also took the band on the road, including 1926 dates in New York City.

Big Apple, big contacts. This was where Anderson met Clarence Williams, the classic blues composer, pianist, and publisher who plugged him into a series of recording dates. In the late '20s, the trumpeter played with Luis Russell's band as well as behind the great pianist Jelly Roll Morton, who both encouraged and featured Anderson in vocal spots. There was some similarity to the crooning of Louis Armstrong. In fact, Anderson even substituted for Armstrong at the Connie's Inn venue during a run of the Hot Chocolate Revue, a stage vehicle that featured Armstrong heavily. Anderson then worked with saxophonist, bandleader, and composer Benny Carter. Following a variety of freelance activity in the first half of the '30s, Anderson was mostly associated with the popular Mills Blue Rhythm Band. In 1935 he moved over to Charlie Turner's Arcadians, just in time to catch a wonderful period when Fats Waller fronted this group.

The challenging keyboardist Hazel Scott convened a big band in 1939, and Anderson was one of the brass players she chose for the group. The trumpeter's next big opportunity came along when trumpeter Murphy Steinberg vamoosed from the Joe Sullivan band and Anderson was called in as his replacement. Sullivan, also a keyboard player, had been strongly influenced by Earl Hines and was presenting a similar show, traditional yet progressive, revolving around the piano but also featuring a good deal of challenging section playing as well as the obligatory solo spots. It kept Anderson busy until 1941. He began playing with a ten-piece band under the leadership of Frankie Newton, but by the end of the year had given music up completely. He is often confused with the New Orleans trumpeter Andrew "Andy" Anderson, only five years his senior.
~ Eugene Chadbourne

Willie Dixon
b. Vicksburg, MS, USA.
d. Jan. 29, 1992, Burbank, CA, USA.
né: Willie James Dixon Member: "Big Three Trio".
William James "Willie" Dixon (July 1, 1915 – January 29, 1992) was an American blues musician, vocalist, songwriter, arranger and record producer. A Grammy Award winner who was proficient on both the Upright bass and the guitar, as well as his own singing voice, Dixon is arguably best known as an acclaimed, prolific songwriter, and one of the founders of the Chicago blues sound. His songs have been recorded not only by himself, or that of the trio and other ensembles in which he participated, but an uncounted number of musicians representing many genres between them. A short list of his most famous compositions include "Little Red Rooster", "Hoochie Coochie Man", "Evil", "Spoonful", "Back Door Man", "I Just Want to Make Love to You", "I Ain't Superstitious", "My Babe", "Wang Dang Doodle", and "Bring It On Home".

Jack Penewell

John Bernard “Jack” Penewell
Born: July 1, 1897, Arendahl, Fillmore County, Minnesota, USA
Died: January 10, 1973 (aged 75), Madison, Dane County, Wisconsin, USA
Jack Penewell was born July 1st, 1897 in Arendahl, Minnesota. After his graduation from high school, he became a vaudeville guitarist, composer and inventor. 
He performed initially on radio and later began playing on vaudeville stages around the country, often billed as "the guitar ace," or "wizard of the 12-string guitar." He played Hawaiian steel guitar and helped popularize Hawaiian style music.

In 1922, he began marketing his inventions such as double-necked guitars, and a 4-necked Hawaiian guitar. He served in both World Wars, living briefly in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania between the wars. After his discharge from the army in 1943, he moved to Madison, Wisconsin and taught guitar at McKinney's School of Hawaiian Guitar, Wheeler School of Music, and at his own music shop on North Hamilton Street. Penewell died in 1973 in Madison, Wisconsin
Courtesy of Nathan D. Gibson, Ethnic American Music Curator, Mills Music Library

John Bernard “Jack” Penewell

Jack Penewell collection, 1897-1973
Alvino Rey Leader/guitar
d. Feb, 24, 2004, Salt Lake City, UT, USA.
(pneumonia and congestiveheart failure)
Age: 95. né: Alvin McBurney
Biography ~by Jason Ankeny

The self-styled "King of the Guitar," swing-era bandleader Alvino Rey pioneered an otherworldly pedal steel sound which later formed the foundation of the space age pop aesthetic. Born Alvin McBurney in Oakland, CA, on July 1, 1911, a decade later he and his family relocated to Cleveland, OH, where as a teen he received a banjo as a birthday gift. He made his professional debut in 1927 as a member of Ev Jones' band, and a year later signed on with the Phil Spitalny Orchestra. 

Eventually switching over to guitar, he adopted the name Alvino Rey in 1929 while performing in New York City, where Latin music was then at its peak; stints backing Russ Morgan and Freddy Martin followed, and by the mid-'30s he was in San Francisco playing with Horace Heidt.

With Heidt, Rey became a star upon adopting the pedal steel; a pioneering force behind the popularity of the amplified guitar, in early 1935 he was even recruited by the Gibson guitar manufacturing company to develop a prototype pickup. Later modifying his instrument to rechristen it the console guitar, Rey's innovative chord structures and distinctive sound earned him a major fan following, and in 1939 he formed his own band. He and his group (which included the vocal group Four King Sisters, one of whom -- Luise King-- became Rey's wife in 1937) were soon enlisted to serve as the staff orchestra at the Mutual Broadcasting radio network, in early 1942 scoring a major hit with their reading of "Deep in the Heart of Texas."

That same year Rey dramatically altered the band's makeup to bring in an enormous brass section, with no less than six saxophones. The group's lineup was extraordinary -- members included the likes of Ray Conniff, Neal Hefti, Billy May, Al Cohn and Zoot Sims -- but the 1943 musicians' union's recording ban brought about their swift demise, and within months Rey was out of music altogether, accepting a mechanic job with Lockheed Aircraft. In 1944 he joined the U.S. Navy, where he was assigned to develop radar systems; after his military stint he formed a new band, signing to Capitol and notching a handful of minor hits including "Cement Mixer." After this band broke up in 1950, Rey toured with a series of smaller combos, frequently appearing with his brother-in-law, Buddy Cole.

Rey also became one of the most influential and distinctive session men of the exotica era, lending his guitar to sessions from Esquivel,George Cates and countless others; he also teamed with Jack Constanzo and other session aces in the Martin Denny-inspired groupthe Surfmen. In the mid-1960s, Rey joined the ever-expanding King Family group on a television variety show which enjoyed a healthy run of five seasons, concurrently producing a series of LPs featuring the program's cast. Amazingly, he also continued performing well into his '80s, leading a band that played Disneyland each year from the theme park's opening onward. The swing and exotica stalwart passed away March 2, 2004 at his Salt Lake City, UT home.

Earle Ronald Warren, Alto Sax
b. Springfield, OH, USA.
d. June 4, 1994, USA. Played with Count Basie Band.
~by Scott Yanow
Earle Warren was Count Basie's longtime lead altoist and occasional pop ballad singer. He played piano, banjo, and ukulele in a family band before taking up the saxophone, eventually settling on the alto. He led bands in the Midwest during part of the 1930s before joining Basie in 1937. Until the breakup of the band at the end of 1949, Warren was a strong presence in the saxophone section even though he rarely was given a full solo. In later years he worked as manager for a variety of R&B acts, had opportunities to solo with Buck Clayton's groups, was featured in the '70s film Born to Swing, and headed the Countsmen starting in 1973.

Notable Events Occurring
On This Date Include:

Claude Thornhill, Bandleader
died at the age of 55.

Frank Hicks, western swing guitarist
died in Fresno, CA, USA.
Age: 73.

Songs Recorded/Released
On This Date Include:

Ray Miller's Black And White Melody Boys
  • Can You Tell?
  • Rose Of Spain
  • Whispering

Isham Jones and his Orchestra - My Honey's Lovin' Arms
  • Tricks

Whitey Kaufman's Original Pennsylvania Serenaders
Bennie Krueger and his Orchestra - June Night

Harry Reser and his Orchestra

Ted Lewis and his Band - That's Why I Love You


Carolina Club Orchestra - Am I A Passing Fancy?

Jimmie Noone's Apex Club Orchestra - San
  • So Sweet

Ted Weems and his Orchestra - Sing (A Happy Little Thing)


Sunny Clapp and his Band O' Sunshine

Ted Lewis and his Band - I'm All Dressed Up With A Broken Heart

~Sammy H Stept (m) Bud Green (l) 1929

Oh honey, oh honey,
Why is it that you act so funny
When we should be making love?
Oh I'm willing, I'm so willing,
But nothing that you do seems thrilling!
I long for your pettin',
Where am I gettin'?
There's the moon, way up high,
Here are you, here am I,
Oh do, do do something!
I ain't been hugged, I ain't been kissed,
And I want to see just what I've missed,
So, oh do, oh do something!
I got the time and the place, the place and the time, I know;
I got a bench in the park, and a park and a bench, and all!
You know, other pairs, they're makin' haste,
But look at me, I'm going to waste!
So, oh do, oh do something!
Summer nights, stars galore,
Oh tell me, what are we waitin' for, huh?
Aw, come on honey,
Aw come on, do something!
You know, it's been told and explained
That nothing tried, nothing gained!
So, oh do, do something!
Got a hug and a kiss, and a kiss and a hug or two,
I wanna give them away, and I'm gonna give them away to you!
Sittin' around just seems so dumb,
And look at me, I'm just gettin' numb!
So, oh do, oh do something!
All alone, just we two,
And I feel so bop-bop-a-do-no!
Oh do, do do (scat)

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