Category:Easy listening artists
Artists and other creators of easy listening music.
Pages in category "Easy listening artists"
The following 84 pages are in this category, out of 84 total. This list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
Artists and other creators of easy listening music.
The following 84 pages are in this category, out of 84 total. This list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
1. 101 Strings – 101 Strings had a trademark sound, focusing on melody with a laid-back ambiance most often featuring strings. Their LPs were individualized by the slogan The Sound of Magnificence, the 101 Strings orchestra included 124 string instruments, and was conducted by Wilhelm Stephan. The orchestras famous official photograph was taken in the Musikhalle Hamburg, record label mogul David L. Miller came to prominence by releasing the first Bill Haley & His Comets’ records in 1952–1953 on his own Essex label. In this capacity, Miller played a role in the creation of rock, following the rise of mood music, Miller subcontracted the Orchester des Nordwestdeutschen Rundfunks Hamburg conducted by Wilhelm Stephan to play in-house arrangements of popular standards. The first three 101 Strings albums were released in November 1957, and twelve more titles were released in 1958 and these records were pressed by Millers own plants and released through his own distribution channels. His core staff arrangers were Monty Kelly, Joseph Francis Kuhn, all three proved adept at writing original compositions that were stylistically consistent both with contemporary hit songs and each other. Miller placed these on 101 Strings albums to provide additional publishing revenues, kellys earliest successes were Latin and Spanish travelogues, although he became 101 Strings Now Sound specialist following the British Invasion. Kuhn concentrated on radio-friendly numbers in the Popss orchestral manner which provided Somerset its initial catalog of originals and their body of early 1960s work was recycled via re-release throughout the next twenty years. In 1964, Miller sold the franchise to Al Sherman, a record label distributor. Sherman retained Miller as a partner to oversee production and A&R, the Alshire era is characterized by large-scale expansion of product, attempts to branch out to younger markets and beginning in 1969, eventual stagnation. A tribute to John Lennon in January 1981 marked the final 101 Strings effort, many 101 Strings albums are simply orchestrated versions of pop hits and show tunes, although the early Somerset material contains many examples of the exotica and lounge genres. Songs of the Seasons in Japan, Hawaiian Paradise, and East of Suez are three such albums,101 Strings Play the Blues and Back Beat Symphony were early experiments in symphonic-pop hybridization, while Fly Me To The Moon contains five noir-ish originals. The Alshire catalog was sold to Madacy, Inc. in the 1990s and, under the direction of Greg Sims,101 Strings compilations were reissued on CD during the lounge revival of the 1990s. Few 101 Strings LPs have been re-released in their original form, the 50 Hz hum heard on many of those tape recordings was due to the Ampex 350s filtering which was not well suited for European 50 Hz power. The My Fair Lady and King and I releases have what appears to be the sound of dirty mixing pots used on the fly during those sessions. There were a number of releases that sounded like tape copies of pristine Stereo Fidelity vinyl which actually, were not all that pristine. Stereo recordings were made with a cutting stylus. This resulted at times in pinch distortion which early conical styli did not handle well, the later development of elliptical styli allowed more precise tracking of the track and greatly reduced inner-track distortion
2. Ronnie Aldrich – Ronnie Aldrich, born Ronald Frank Aldrich was a British easy listening and jazz pianist, arranger, conductor, and composer. The only son of a manager, he was three years old when he started playing the piano. He was educated at The Harvey Grammar School, Folkestone, and taught violin at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Before World War II, Aldrich went to India to play jazz and first gained fame in the 1940s as leader of The Squadronaires and he was noteworthy for the recording development of playing two pianos in his recordings. He recorded for The Decca Record Company Ltd in the 1960s and 1970s and he also regularly broadcast on BBC Radio 2 with his own orchestra as well as with the BBC Radio Orchestra and the BBC Scottish Radio Orchestra, based in BBC Glasgow. He also recorded tracks that were released by Readers Digest. Recently, all the Decca recordings were released in CD format by Vocalion, many of his sessions for radio stations have been released by Apple iTunes in m4a format. He was appointed director at Thames Television and thus was widely known as the musical director for the television programme The Benny Hill Show. He was married twice and had a daughter from his first marriage, at the time of his death he was married to E. Mary Aldrich, his wife for more than 30 years. He died of cancer at age 77 in the Isle Of Man. His work has been released in different formats, LP, single, cassette, 8-track, open reel, CD, All Time Hits of Jazz, Ace of Clubs 1960 Remastered and re-released 13/10/09 as All Time Jazz Hits, on double CD with Top of the World. This record was sold in the island to tourists, today - In The Old Fashioned Way, Decca Phase 41971
3. Herb Alpert – Herb Alpert is an American musician most associated with the group variously known as Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass, Herb Alperts Tijuana Brass, or TJB. Alpert is also an industry executive, the A of A&M Records. Alpert also has created abstract expressionist paintings and sculpture over two decades, which are displayed on occasion. Alpert and wife, Lani Hall, are substantial philanthropists through the operation of the Herb Alpert Foundation, Alperts musical accomplishments include five No.1 albums and 28 albums total on the Billboard Album chart, nine Grammy Awards, fourteen platinum albums, and fifteen gold albums. Alpert has sold 72 million records worldwide, Alpert is the only recording artist to hit No.1 on the U. S. Billboard Hot 100 pop chart as both a vocalist, and an instrumentalist. Herb Alpert was born and raised in the Boyle Heights section of Eastside Los Angeles, California and his family was Jewish, and had come to the U. S. from Radomyshl and Romania. His father, although a tailor by trade, was also a mandolin player. His mother taught violin at a young age and his older brother David was a talented young drummer. Alpert himself began trumpet lessons at the age of eight and played at dances as a teenager, acquiring an early wire recorder in high school, he experimented on this crude equipment. After graduating from Fairfax High School in 1952, he joined the United States Army, after his service in the Army, Alpert tried his hand at acting, but eventually settled on pursuing a career in music. While attending the University of Southern California in the 1950s, he was a member of the USC Trojan Marching Band for two years, in 1956, he appeared in the uncredited role Drummer on Mt. Sinai in the film The Ten Commandments. In 1962, he had a part in a scene in the film Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation where he played in a dance band. In 1957 Alpert teamed up with Rob Weerts, another burgeoning lyricist, a number of songs written or co-written by Alpert during the following two years became Top 20 hits, including Baby Talk by Jan and Dean and Wonderful World by Sam Cooke. In 1960, Alpert began his career as a vocalist at Dot Records under the name of Dore Alpert. Tell It to the Birds was recorded as the first release on the Alpert & Moss label Carnival Records, when Alpert and Moss found that there was prior usage of the Carnival name, they renamed the label A&M Records. Alpert set up a recording studio in his garage and had been overdubbing a tune called Twinkle Star, written by Sol Lake. During a visit to Tijuana, Mexico, Alpert happened to hear a band while attending a bullfight. Alpert adapted the style to the tune, mixed in crowd cheers and other noises for ambience
4. Leroy Anderson – Leroy Anderson, was an American composer of short, light concert pieces, many of which were introduced by the Boston Pops Orchestra under the direction of Arthur Fiedler. John Williams described him as one of the great American masters of light orchestral music, born in Cambridge, Massachusetts to Swedish parents, Anderson was given his first piano lessons by his mother, who was a church organist. He continued studying piano at the New England Conservatory of Music, in 1925 Anderson entered Harvard University, where he studied musical harmony with Walter Spalding, counterpoint with Edward Ballantine, canon and fugue with William C. Hill and Walter Piston, composition with Walter Piston and double bass with Gaston Dufresne and he also studied organ with Henry Gideon. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts, Magna cum laude in 1929 and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, in Harvard University Graduate School, he studied composition with Walter Piston and Georges Enescu and received a Master of Arts in Music in 1930. At the time he was working as organist and choir director at the East Milton Congregational Church, leading the Harvard University Band, and conducting and arranging for dance bands around Boston. Andersons first work was the 1938 Jazz Pizzicato, but at just over ninety seconds the piece was too short for a three-minute 78-RPM single of the period, Fiedler suggested writing a companion piece and Anderson wrote Jazz Legato later that same year. The combined recording went on to one of Andersons signature compositions. In 1942 Leroy Anderson joined the U. S. Army, counter Intelligence Corps as a translator and interpreter, in 1945 he was reassigned to the Pentagon as Chief of the Scandinavian Desk of Military Intelligence. However his duties did not prevent him from composing, and in 1945 he wrote The Syncopated Clock, Anderson became a reserve officer and was recalled to active duty for the Korean War. In 1951 Anderson wrote his first hit, Blue Tango, earning a Golden Disc and his pieces and his recordings during the fifties conducting a studio orchestra were immense commercial successes. Blue Tango was the first instrumental recording ever to one million copies. His most famous pieces are probably Sleigh Ride and The Syncopated Clock, in February 1951, WCBS-TV in New York City selected Syncopated Clock as the theme song for The Late Show, the WCBS late-night movie. Anderson started the work during a wave in August 1946. The Boston Pops recording of it was the first pure orchestral piece to reach No.1 on the Billboard Pop Music chart, from 1952 to 1961, Andersons composition Plink, Plank, Plunk. was used as the theme for the CBS panel show Ive Got A Secret. Andersons musical style employs creative instrumental effects and occasionally use of sound-generating items such as typewriters. Anderson wrote his Piano Concerto in C in 1953 but withdrew it, in 1988 the Anderson family decided to publish the work. Erich Kunzel and the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra released the first recording of this work, four other recordings, including one for piano, in 1958, Anderson composed the music for the Broadway show Goldilocks with orchestrations by Philip J. Lang
5. John Barry (composer) – John Barry Prendergast, OBE was an English composer and conductor of film music. He composed the scores for 11 of the James Bond films between 1963 and 1987, and also arranged and performed the James Bond Theme to the first film in the series, in 1999, he was appointed OBE at Buckingham Palace for services to music. Born in York, Barry spent his years working in cinemas owned by his father. During his national service with the British Army in Cyprus, Barry began performing as a musician after learning to play the trumpet, upon completing his national service, he formed his own band in 1957, The John Barry Seven. He later developed an interest in composing and arranging music, making his début for television in 1958. He came to the notice of the makers of the first James Bond film Dr. No and this started a successful association between Barry and Eon Productions which lasted for 25 years. He received many awards for his work, including five Academy Awards, two for Born Free, and one each for The Lion in Winter, Dances with Wolves and Out of Africa. He also received ten Golden Globe Award nominations, winning once for Best Original Score for Out of Africa in 1986, Barry completed his last film score, Enigma, in 2001 and recorded the successful album Eternal Echoes the same year. He then concentrated chiefly on live performances and co-wrote the music to the musical Brighton Rock in 2004 alongside Don Black and he was made a Fellow of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts in 2005. Barry was married four times and had four children and he moved to the United States in 1975 and lived there for the remainder of his life until his death in 2011. Barry was born John Barry Prendergast, in York, England, and was the son of an English mother and his mother was a classical pianist. His father, John Xavier Jack Prendergast, from Cork, was a projectionist during the silent film era, who later owned a chain of cinemas across northern England. As a result of his fathers work, Barry was raised in and around cinemas in northern England and he stated that this childhood background influenced his musical tastes. Barry was educated at St Peters School, York, and also received lessons from Francis Jackson. Serving in the British Army, Barry spent his national service playing the trumpet, the career breakthrough for Barry was the BBC television series Drumbeat, when he appeared with the John Barry Seven. He was employed by EMI from 1959 until 1962 arranging orchestral accompaniment for the singers, including Adam Faith, he also composed songs. When Faith made his first film, Beat Girl, Barry composed, arranged and conducted the score and his music was later released as the UKs first soundtrack album. Barry also composed the music for another Faith film, Never Let Go, orchestrated the score for Mix Me a Person, in 1962, Barry transferred to Ember Records, where he produced albums as well as arranging them
6. Stanley Black – Stanley Black OBE was an English bandleader, composer, conductor, arranger and pianist. He wrote and arranged many film scores and recorded prolifically for the Decca label, Black was born as Solomon Schwartz on 14 June 1913 in Whitechapel, England. His parents were Polish and Romanian Jews and he began piano lessons at the age of seven. He was aged only 12 when his first composition was broadcast on BBC Radio and continued his early success by winning a Melody Maker arranging competition aged 15. In the early 1930s he was employed as a player and composer and had worked with Howard Jacobs, Joe Orlando, Lew Stone, Maurice Winnick. He had also broadcast and recorded with several American musicians, including jazz saxophonist Coleman Hawkins, when the two eventually met in London, the reviewer Edgar Jackson suggested they record together, and a notable collaboration is a duet version of Honeysuckle Rose. During World War II, Black joined the Royal Air Force, in 1944 he was appointed conductor of the BBC Dance Orchestra, and remained in the job for almost nine years, broadcasting as many as six nights a week. By this time he had begun recording under his own name for Decca. Now well involved with the industry, he went on to compose, arrange and direct music for about 200 more films. He was also conductor of the Associated British Picture Corporation Orchestra. Stanley Blacks radio work kept him in contact with a listening audience through his incidental music for shows such as Much Binding in the Marsh. He later presented his own programmes on radio and television, including Black Magic, in the early 1950s he regularly topped the Melody Maker lists of the most-heard musicians on radio. He was chosen to be included on Deccas first release of long-playing records in the UK in June 1950 and this enabled him to continue his conducting, arranging and performing and resulted in a large number of albums. He was particularly popular in United States, as evidenced by his inclusion in the Billboard best-sellers lists. During his life, he conducted many of Britains major orchestras, Stanley Black received numerous awards, including the OBE. He was made a fellow of the Institute of Arts and Letters. He died in London in 2002, aged 89, in 2003, Decca Music Group Ltd released a two-CD set A tribute to Stanley Black including recordings from 1951 to 1979. Stanley Black is remembered for writing scores for radio, television and cinema
7. Carmen Cavallaro – Carmen Cavallaro was an American pianist. He established himself as one of the most accomplished and admired light music pianists of his generation, Carmen Cavallaro was born in New York City. Known as the “Poet of the Piano”, he showed a gift for music from age three, picking out tunes on a toy piano and his parents were encouraged to develop the child’s musical talents and he studied classical piano in the United States. As a young pianist, he toured Europe, performing in many capitals, in 1933 Cavallaro joined Al Kavelins orchestra, where he quickly became the featured soloist. After four years he switched to a series of big bands. He also worked briefly with Enric Madriguera and Abe Lyman, Cavallaro formed his own band, a five-piece combo, in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1939. His popularity grew and his group expanded into a 14-piece orchestra, other venues where he drew large audiences included New York’s Waldorf-Astoria, Chicago’s Palmer House and the Coconut Grove in Los Angeles. In 1963 he had a hit recording of the song Sukiyaki. One of Cavallaros vocalists, Guy Mitchell, later famous in his own right. Cavallaros single best-selling recording was his pop version of Chopins Polonaise and his musical interests and arrangements included dance music, particularly Latin rhythms, tangos and strict tempo dancing styles, as well as some pop and jazz arrangements of classical melodies. In this, he is cited as being influenced by pianist Eddy Duchin. Liberace was greatly influenced by both Cavallaro and Duchin, all three shared a propensity for arranging classical piano themes in a pop idiom. Cavallaro became a member of ASCAP in 1957, although he wrote several songs, including Dolores My Own and Anita, the most popular were While the Nightwind Sings and Masquerade Waltz. His most celebrated achievement was playing the piano music for actor Tyrone Power’s hands to mime. Cavallaro was married to Wanda Cavallaro on 6 May 1935 and they were divorced on 28 December 1962. Cavallaro died from cancer on 12 October 1989 in Columbus. He was survived by his wife Donna S. Cavallaro and children, Dolores Cavallaro Buscher, Paul Cavallaro and Anita Cavallaro Finkelstein, Step children, Charles, Frederick and Robert. Grandchildren, Andrea Finkelstein Sherman, Joseph, Michael, Matthew, Michael, Caroline, Jane, Sarah, Carmen Cavallaro at the Internet Movie Database Carmen Cavallaro playing Fascination on a 7 ft Grand Piano Carmen Cavallaro playing La Vie en Rose on a 7 ft Grand Piano
8. Frank Chacksfield – Francis Charles Chacksfield was born in Battle, East Sussex, and as a child learned to play piano and organ. He had appeared at Hastings Music Festivals by the time he was 14, after working for a short period in a solicitors office he decided on a career in music, and by the late 1930s, led a small band at Tonbridge in Kent. After the war, he worked with Chester and on BBC Radio as an arranger and he also worked as musical director for both Henry Hall and Geraldo, and began recording under his own name in 1951 as Frank Chacksfields Tunesmiths. In early 1953, he had his first top ten hit, Little Red Monkey and this was a novelty recording featuring Jack Jordan on the clavioline, and reportedly the first record featuring an electronic instrument to feature on the UK pop chart. He signed a contract with Decca Records in 1953, and formed a 40-piece orchestra with a large string section. It spent eight weeks at No,2, and in all thirteen weeks in the top five chart positions, without dislodging Frankie Laines, I Believe. He became one of Britains best known orchestra leaders internationally, and is estimated to have more than 20 million albums worldwide. His material was mood music, similar to that of Mantovani, including ballads, waltzes, in 1954, he began presenting a series on BBC TV, which continued occasionally until the early 1960s. Chacksfield was responsible for the arrangement of the first UK entry into the Eurovision Song Contest 1957. He continued to write music, release singles and albums through the 1950s and 1960s and he continued to record occasionally until the 1990s, from the 1970s primarily on the Phase 4 label. He also developed interests in publishing and recorded for Starborne Productions. Many of these recordings were made available in 2007. His last album was Thanks for the Memories, released in 1991, Chacksfield died in Kent in 1995, after having suffered for several years from Parkinsons disease. The main theme from his Latin-American style track Cuban Boy was used as the music for some broadcast versions of the BBC Scotland sitcom Still Game. His song Après Ski was featured in the 2006 video game Saints Row, from the album All Time Top T. V. Themes, several tracks were used by Dutch offshore pirate radio station Radio Veronica in the 1960s. Rawhide and Dragnet were used in the news jingles, The Alfred Hitchcock Theme was also used, the Frank Chacksfield Band in the 1930s The Decca Years 1953–75 Frank Chacksfield Complete Discography
9. Ray Charles (musician, born 1918) – As a vocalist, Charles, along with Julia Rinker Miller, sang the theme song to the television series Threes Company. As a songwriter, Charles was best known for the choral anthem Fifty Nifty United States in which he set the names of the states to music in alphabetical order and it was originally written for The Perry Como Show. He is also known for Letters, We Get Letters, also written for Comos show. In his later years, he continued to serve as a consultant to television programs. Charles was acknowledged as an authority on American popular music, at the age of 13, Chuck Offenberg won a contest to sing on the radio in Chicago. At 16, while still at Hyde Park High School, he had his own 15 minute radio program on WENR, after graduation, he attended Central YMCA College, where he met fellow future choral director Norman Luboff, who was to become a lifelong friend. In 1936, Offenberg joined the Federal Theater show O Say Can You Sing, sharing a room with the young Buddy Rich. In 1942, Offenberg, with his wife, Bernice and son, Michael, came to New York City and he started getting work, singing on the radio for Lyn Murray, Ray Bloch, by 1944, he was doing 10 radio shows a week. In May 1944, Offenberg changed his name to Ray Charles and it would be 10 more years until the other Ray Charles changed his name from Ray Charles Robinson to Ray Charles. Close harmony was all the rage and Charles became the arranger and tenor for the Double Daters and he also conducted the band on their two CBS weekly shows. Discharged in 1946, Charles sang on New York radio and on record dates. In 1947, he was the conductor for the Broadway hit Finians Rainbow, Charles initially became associated with Perry Como in 1948 through his arrangements for the vocal group the Satisfiers. The group performed on Comos The Chesterfield Supper Club, from 1949 to 1951, he was choral arranger-conductor on The Big Show, the last big radio variety show with Tallulah Bankhead and Meredith Willson. Before it moved to Los Angeles, Charles did some singing on the Your Hit Parade radio show, lucky Strike and Chesterfield were competitors and Comos Chesterfield show aired three times a week on CBS. For the next 35 years the Ray Charles Singers became a fixture on the Perry Como television show and it was a busy time with televisions top variety shows, records and commercial jingles. Charles also worked with Nick Vanoff, Gary Smith, Dwight Hemion, Peter Matz, the talent that worked on The Perry Como Show at one time or another in its long history is remarkable. It was here where he met the other Ray Charles, the Screen Actors Guild normally does not allow two members to have the same name, but Charles the performer was registered as Ray Robinson though he performed as Ray Charles. Charles the composer also wrote material and did the choral work on Caesars Hour with Sid Caesar
10. Richard Clayderman – Clayderman learned piano from his father, a piano teacher. At the age of twelve, he was accepted into the Conservatoire de Paris, financial difficulties, precipitated by his fathers illness, forestalled a promising career as a classical pianist. So in order to earn a living, he work as a bank clerk. He accompanied French singers such as Johnny Hallyday, Thierry Le Luron, in 1976, he was invited by Olivier Toussaint, a French record producer, and his partner Paul de Senneville, to record a gentle piano ballad. De Senneville had composed this ballad as a tribute to his baby daughter, the 23-year-old Pagès was auditioned along with 20 other pianists and got the job. He was a musician with a soft touch and good technique. Pagès name was changed to Richard Clayderman, and the single took off and it was called Ballade pour Adeline. Clayderman has recorded over 1,300 melodies and has created a new romantic style through a repertoire which combines his trademark originals with classics and he has devoted much of his time performing concerts, going as far as playing 200 shows in 250 days. As of 2006, his record number at approximately 150 million. He is popular in Asia and is noted by the Guinness Book of World Records as being the most successful pianist in the world and he lives in Saint-Ouen, France with his wife Typhaine. His first marriage to Rosaline produced a daughter Maud while his marriage to Christine produced a son Peter. List of best selling music artists Official website His biography Play Album of Richard Clayderman Richard Clayderman on frimusique. com
11. Ray Conniff – Joseph Raymond Ray Conniff was an American bandleader and arranger best known for his Ray Conniff Singers during the 1960s. Conniff was born in Attleboro, Massachusetts, and learned to play the trombone from his father and he studied music arranging from a course book. After serving in the U. S. Army in World War II, he joined the Artie Shaw big band and he wrote a top 10 arrangement for Don Cherrys Band of Gold in 1955, a single that sold more than a million copies. He also backed up the albums Tony by Tony Bennett, Blue Swing by Eileen Rodgers, Swingin for Two by Don Cherry, between 1957 and 1968, Conniff had 28 albums in the American Top 40, the most famous one being Somewhere My Love. He topped the album list in Britain in 1969 with His Orchestra, His Chorus, His Singers, His Sound and he also was the first American popular artist to record in Russia—in 1974 he recorded Ray Conniff in Moscow with the help of a local choir. In Brazil and Chile he was treated like a pop superstar in the 1980s and 1990s when he was in his 70s and 80s. I decided to have the choir sing along with the big band using wordless lyrics, the women were doubled with the trumpets and the men were doubled with the trombones. In the booth Mitch was totally surprised and excited at how well it worked, because of the success of his backing arrangements, and the new sound Conniff created, Miller allowed him to make his own record, and this became the successful ’s Wonderful. A collection of standards that were recorded with an orchestra and a singing chorus. His second album was Dance the Bop and it was an experiment by one of the brass at Columbia to cash in on a conceived dance step creation, but from the outset, Conniff disliked it. When it sold poorly, he had it withdrawn from the market, in 1959 he started The Ray Conniff Singers and released the album Its the Talk of the Town. This group brought him the biggest hit he ever had in his career, the lyrics of the albums title selection were written to the music of Laras Theme from the film Doctor Zhivago, and the result was a top 10 single in the US. The album reached the US top 20 and went platinum, the single and album also reached high positions in the international charts, whilst the first of four Christmas albums by the Singers, Christmas with Conniff was also successful. Nearly 50 years after its release, in 2004, Conniff was posthumously awarded a platinum album/CD, musically different highlights in Conniffs career are two albums he produced in cooperation with Billy Butterfield, an old friend from earlier swing days. Conniff Meets Butterfield featured Butterfields solo trumpet and a rhythm group, Just Kiddin Around, released 1963. Both albums are pure light jazz and did not feature any vocals, Conniff recorded in New York from 1955 through 1961 and mainly in Los Angeles from 1962 through 2000. Later in the 1960s he produced an average of two instrumental and one album a year. Conniff sold about 70 million albums worldwide, and continued recording and performing until his death in 2002 and he died in Escondido, California, from a fall he suffered in a bathtub, and is buried in the Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles, California
12. Lenny Dee – Leonard George DeStoppelaire, better known as Lenny Dee, was a virtuoso organist who played many styles of music. His record albums were among the most popular of easy listening and his signature hit, Plantation Boogie, charted as a Top 20 hit in 1955. He also had a record with 1970s Spinning Wheel. Dee played a variety of songs in numerous styles and he played original compositions, popular songs, and novelty tunes, and was a master of improvisation. Although his unique style was a blend, he also played ballads, country and western, jazz, rock. Born in Chicago, Illinois in 1923, Dee was an only child, as a child, he sang in his churchs choir, he also played ukulele, banjo and accordion. As a teenager, he turned playing the accordion into a profession in his uncles quartet, upon his return from service, Dee spent his Navy earnings on a Hammond Model A organ, one of the earliest of its kind. Bill, he received instruction in organ at the Chicago Conservatory of Music, afterward, he began playing hotels and night clubs in the south in the late 1940s to some degree of success, but no record contracts. Dee made good, and his composition, Plantation Boogie charted at #18 in 1955. Dee re-recorded the hit on albums, and was often imitated, even plagiarized. Dee wrote Chicken in the Rough, and recorded the song as a duet with saxophonist, the uncanny similarity of Yakety Sax to Dees Chicken in the Rough is often noted. Dee ventured into recording albums for Decca starting in 1954 with his first LP, part of Dees charm was his albums zany covers featuring Dee in various situations, and titles with puns that usually included his name, such as Dee-Lirious, Dee-Licious, and Dee-Most. His recordings featured organ with other instruments that were produced by Owen Bradley and developed into the Nashville sound, Dee played various instruments, and was highly influential in the history of organs and keyboards. Dee was recognized for his contribution to the field of music by Time Life for what Dee described as bringing the out of the church. They had two children, Raymond and Georgia, Lenny Dee Jr. his drummer, was one of three children from his first marriage, daughters are Barbara and Linda. Despite his contract with Decca, Lenny Dees first love was live performance, Dee loved people and he loved to entertain them with music and laughter. Dee was a man and a performer. In the mid-1950s he performed for several summers at the Lake Breeze Hotel lounge, at Buckeye Lake, just east of Columbus, around 1960, he played for a few years at a lounge in Fort Lauderdale, Florida
13. Percy Faith – Percy Faith was a Canadian bandleader, orchestrator, composer and conductor, known for his lush arrangements of pop and Christmas standards. He is often credited with popularizing the easy listening or mood music format, Faith became a staple of American popular music in the 1950s and continued well into the 1960s. Faith was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario and he was the oldest of eight children. His parents, Abraham Faith and Minnie, née Rottenberg, were Jewish and he played violin and piano as a child, and played in theatres and at Massey Hall. After his hands were burned in a fire, he turned to conducting. Beginning with defunct stations CKNC and CKCL, Faith was a staple of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporations live-music broadcasting from 1933 to 1940, in the early 1940s, Faith was orchestra leader for the Carnation Contented program on NBC. From 1948-1949 he also served as the leader on the CBS radio network program The Coca-Cola Hour. The orchestral accordionist John Serry Sr. collaborated with Faith in these broadcasts, in 1945, he became a naturalized citizen of the United States. He made many recordings for Voice of America and his most famous and remembered recordings are Delicado, The Song from Moulin Rouge and Theme from A Summer Place, which won the Grammy Award for Record of the Year in 1961. His Themes for Young Lovers album was a top seller during this era, with the success of Columbia record-mate Ray Conniffs chorus and orchestra during this same time, Faith began using a chorus in several popular albums from the mid-1960s on. Faiths first single with a chorus, Yellow Days, was a substantial hit in the MOR easy listening radio format of the mid-1960s. Faith continued to enjoy airplay and consistent album sales throughout the early 1970s and his other film scores included romantic comedies and dramatic features such as Tammy Tell Me True, Id Rather Be Rich, The Third Day and The Oscar. Faith also composed the theme for the long running NBC series The Virginian. Faith died of cancer in Encino, California, and was interred in the Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery in Culver City and his wife, Mary Faith, was born November 24,1909, and died November 27,1997, in Los Angeles. They married in 1928 and had 2 children, Marilyn and Peter
14. Ferrante & Teicher – Ferrante & Teicher were a duo of American piano players, known for their light arrangements of familiar classical pieces, movie soundtracks, and show tunes. Arthur Ferrante, and Louis Teicher met while studying at the Juilliard School of Music in New York in 1930, musical prodigies, they began performing as a piano duo while still in school. After graduating, they joined the Juilliard faculty. In 1947, they launched a concert career, at first playing nightclubs. Steven Tyler of Aerosmith relates the story that in the 1950s the two practiced in the home of his grandmother Constance Neidhart Tallarico. Between 1950 and 1980, they were a major American easy listening act, and scored four big U. S. hits, Theme From The Apartment, Theme From Exodus, Tonight, and Midnight Cowboy. They performed and recorded regularly with pops orchestras popular standards by George Gershwin, Jerome Kern, Cole Porter, in 1973, they did the Hollywood Radio Theater theme for the Rod Serling radio drama series, The Zero Hour. The duo also experimented with prepared pianos, adding paper, sticks, rubber, wood blocks, metal bars, chains, glass, mallets, both men were initiated as honorary members of Tau Kappa Epsilon at Central State University while on tour. Ferrante and Teicher ceased performing in 1989 and retired to Longboat Key and Siesta Key, respectively and they continued to play together occasionally at a local piano store. CDs of their music, some of it not previously released, have continued to appear, Louis Teicher died of a heart attack in August 2008, three weeks before his 84th birthday. Arthur Ferrante died of natural causes on September 19,2009 at the age of 88, arthur is survived by his wife, Jena, his daughter, Brenda Eberhardt, and two granddaughters
15. Arthur Fiedler – Arthur Fiedler was a long-time conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra, a symphony orchestra that specializes in popular and light classical music. With a combination of musicianship and showmanship, he made the Boston Pops one of the orchestras in the United States. Fiedler was born in Boston, Massachusetts to Emanuel and Johanna Fiedler and his father was an Austrian violinist who played in the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and his mother was a pianist. He grew up in Boston, and attended Boston Latin School until his father retired in the early 1900s, the family soon moved again, to Berlin, where from 1911 to 1915 young Fiedler studied violin at the Royal Academy of Music under Willy Hess. Fiedler returned to Boston at the beginning of World War I, in 1915 he joined the Boston Symphony Orchestra under Karl Muck as a violinist. He also worked as a pianist, organist, and percussionist, in 1924, Fiedler formed the Boston Sinfonietta, a chamber music orchestra composed of Boston Symphony members, and started a series of free outdoor concerts. Fiedler was appointed the conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra in 1930. While the position of conductor of the Boston Pops both prior to and after Fiedler tended to be a phase of a career, Fiedler made it his lifes work. With Fiedlers direction, the Boston Pops reportedly made more recordings than any other orchestra in the world, most of them for RCA Victor, with total sales exceeding $50 million. In 1946, he conducted the Boston Pops in one of the first American recordings devoted to excerpts from a film score, RCA Victor released an album of ten-inch 78-rpm discs complete with photographs from the film. Fiedlers June 20,1947, recording of Gaîté Parisienne by Jacques Offenbach was eventually released by RCA as their first long-playing classical album and he recorded the same music in 1954 in stereo and began making regular stereo recordings in 1956. A number of Fiedlers recordings were released as 45-rpm extended play discs, beginning in 1949, such as Tchaikovskys Marche Slave, besides recording light classics, Fiedler also recorded music from Broadway shows and Hollywood film scores, as well as arrangements of popular music, especially the Beatles. He and the Boston Pops occasionally recorded classical works that were favorites and he made but a single recording with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Dvoraks New World Symphony. There were also recordings of music by his Sinfonietta. His last album, devoted to disco, was titled Saturday Night Fiedler, Fiedler was also associated with the San Francisco Pops Orchestra for 26 summers, and conducted many other orchestras throughout the world. In very rare visiting performances, Fiedler accepted the invitation to conduct Don Canevas John Hersey High School Bands after reviewing their latest recordings, caneva said, “I was tremendously pleased and delighted when he said he would accept our invitation, after hearing a recent recording of the band. Fiedler ended up conducting twice for Caneva’s bands in 1971 and 1972, in the final 1972 performance the band opened the Symphonic Winds portion of the concert with the Festive Overture by Dmitri Schostakovich, followed with the American Salute by Morton Gould. For the conclusion of this portion, Fiedler chose The Finale From The New World Symphony by Anton Dvorak and he also conducted Leroy Andersons Serenata with the high school band
16. Pete Fountain – Pierre Dewey LaFontaine, Jr. better known as Pete Fountain, was an American jazz clarinetist. He played in traditional and contemporary genres of jazz, such as Dixieland, pop jazz, honky-tonk jazz, as well as pop, and Creole music. Pierre Dewey Fountain, Jr. was born on White Street, in New Orleans, between Dumaine and St. Ann, in a small Creole cottage-style frame house, to Pierre, Sr. and Madeline. Petes father, a driver and a part-time musician, changed the family name to Fountain. He started playing clarinet as a child at the McDonogh 28 school located on Esplanade Avenue, as a child, young Pete was very sickly, frequently battling respiratory infections due to weakened lungs. He was given expensive medication but it proved to be not very effective, during a pharmacy visit, Petes father began a discussion with a neighborhood doctor who was also there shopping and talked with him about his sons condition. The doctor agreed to see the boy the following day, after a short exam, the doctor confirmed the weak lung condition and advised the father to try an unorthodox treatment, purchase the child a musical instrument, anything he has to blow into. The same day, they went to a music store and, given his choice of instruments. At first, Pete was unable to produce a sound from the instrument, but he continued to practice and eventually not only sounds and eventually music. He took private lessons but also learned to play jazz by playing along with records of first Benny Goodman. By the time he reached his teens, he was playing gigs in the nightclubs on Bourbon Street. According to Fountain, When I was a school senior. I answered that I was too busy playing clarinet every night, I guess I was a professional from that point on. One of Fountains early engagements were with the bands of Monk Hazel, Fountain founded the Basin Street Six in 1950 with his longtime friend, trumpeter George Girard. A talent scout for Lawrence Welk, who saw Fountain performing at the Pier 600, invited him to join Welks orchestra in Los Angeles, Fountain became well known for his many solos on Welks ABC television show, The Lawrence Welk Show. He was rumored to have quit when Welk refused to let him jazz up a Christmas carol on the 1958 Christmas show, in an interview, Fountain said he left The Lawrence Welk Show because champagne and bourbon dont mix. Fountain was hired by Decca Records A&R head Charles Bud Dant and went on to produce 42 hit albums with Dant, after Welks death, Fountain would occasionally join with the Welk musical family for reunion shows. Fountain returned to New Orleans, played with the Dukes of Dixieland and he owned his own club in the French Quarter in the 1960s and 1970s
17. James Galway – Sir James Galway, OBE is an Irish virtuoso flute player from Belfast, nicknamed The Man With the Golden Flute. Following in the footsteps of Jean-Pierre Rampal, he one of the first flute players to establish an international career as a soloist. Galway was born in East Belfast near the Belfast docks as one of two brothers and his first instrument was a five-key Irish flute, and at the age of twelve or thirteen, he received a Boehm instrument. He left school at the age of fourteen and worked as an apprentice to a piano repairer for two years and he subsequently went to London to study the flute at the Royal College of Music under John Francis and then at the Guildhall School of Music under Geoffrey Gilbert. He then studied at the Paris Conservatoire under Gaston Crunelle and Jean-Pierre Rampal, after his education he spent fifteen years as an orchestral player. He has played with Sadlers Wells Opera, Covent Garden Opera, the London Symphony Orchestra and he auditioned for the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra under Herbert von Karajan, and was principal flute of that orchestra from 1969 to 1975. To Karajans surprise and dismay, after a period of some disagreement, the album James Galway and The Chieftains in Ireland by Galway and The Chieftains reached number 32 in the UK Albums Chart in 1987. Galway still performs regularly and is one of the worlds most well-known flute players and his recordings have sold over 30 million copies. In 1990, he was invited by Roger Waters to play at The Wall – Live in Berlin concert, held in Potsdamer Platz, he played Pink Floyds songs Goodbye Blue Sky and Is There Anybody Out There. Galway performed for the Academy Award-winning ensemble recording the soundtracks of Peter Jacksons The Lord of the Rings film trilogy, in June 2008, he was inducted into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame along with Liza Minnelli and B. B. He currently performs on Nagahara flutes, as well as some Muramatsu Flutes, conn-Selmer produces his line of flutes, Galway Spirit Flutes. Galway is president of an organisation called Flutewise, a charitable organisation which supports young flute players. He is an Ambassador for the National Foundation for Youth Music and he was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1977, and was knighted in 2001, the first wind player ever to receive that honour. He is a National Patron of Delta Omicron, a professional music fraternity. In December 2013 Galway launched First Flute, an interactive series of lessons for beginning flute students of all ages. He received the 2014 Gramophone Lifetime Achievement Award, Galway has been married three times. His first marriage, to a Frenchwoman, produced a son and he married his second wife, Anna Renggli, a daughter of a well-known Swiss architect, in 1972, and moved from Berlin to Lucerne, Switzerland, her hometown. The couple had twin daughters and a son, in 1978 he recorded for her an instrumental version of John Denvers Annies Song
18. Jackie Gleason – John Herbert Jackie Gleason was an American comedian, actor, and musician who developed a style and characters in his career from growing up in Brooklyn, New York. He was known for his visual and verbal comedy style. By filming the episodes with Electronicams, Gleason later could release the series in syndication and he also developed The Jackie Gleason Show, which maintained high ratings from the mid-1950s until its cancellation in 1970. After originating in Hollywood, filming moved to Miami, Florida, John Herbert Gleason was born in 1916 at 364 Chauncey Street in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn. He grew up at 328 Chauncey, named Herbert Walton Gleason, Jr. at birth, he was baptized John Herbert Gleason. His parents were Herbert Walton Herb Gleason, an Irish-American insurance auditor, Gleason was one of two children, his brother, Clement J. died of meningitis at age 14. Gleason remembered him and his father having a beautiful handwriting, and he used to watch him work at the kitchen table. Once it became evident that he was not coming back, Mae went to work as an attendant for the Brooklyn–Manhattan Transit Corporation. With the disappearance of his father, young Gleason began hanging around with a gang, hustling pool. 73 Elementary School in Brooklyn, John Adams High School in Queens, Gleason became interested in performing after being part of a class play, he quit school before graduating and got a job that paid $4 per night as master of ceremonies at a theater. Other jobs he held at that time included working in a hall, as a stunt driver. He performed the same duties twice a week at the Folly Theater, Gleason was raised by his mother. When she died in 1935 of sepsis from a large neck carbuncle, Gleason was 19, he had nowhere to go, and he had 36 cents to his name. The family of his first girlfriend, Julie Dennehy, offered to him in, Gleason, however, was headstrong. His friend Sammy Birch made room for him in the room he shared with another comedian. Birch also told him of a gig in Reading, Pennsylvania. The booking agent advanced him bus fare for the trip against his salary and this was Gleasons first job as a professional comedian, henceforth, he would always have regular work in small clubs. Gleason worked his way up to a job at New Yorks Club 18, Gleason greeted noted skater Sonja Henie by handing her an ice cube and saying, Okay, now do something
19. Ron Goodwin – Ronald Alfred Ron Goodwin was an English composer and conductor known for his film music. He scored over 70 films in a career lasting over fifty years and his most famous works included Where Eagles Dare, Battle of Britain,633 Squadron and Operation Crossbow. Born in Plymouth, Devon, Goodwin learned to play the piano, when he was nine, the family moved to Harrow, London, where he attended Willesden County School and Pinner County Grammar School, in Middlesex. From there he went on to study the trumpet in London at the Guildhall School of Music. Whilst working as a copyist, he formed his own orchestra in his time and began arranging and conducting recordings for over fifty artists. He wrote his first feature film score for Whirlpool, with screenplay by Lawrence P. Bachmann, after Bachmann became executive producer at MGM-British Studios in 1959, Goodwin composed and conducted the music for most of its productions, as well as working for other film studios. Goodwin was born in Plymouth to James Goodwin, a policeman with the Metropolitan Police Force, the family originally came from London, but had moved to Devon due to James being assigned to security work at the naval dockyard in Devon. Goodwin learned to play the piano by the age of five and returned to London four years later, whilst there, he learnt to play the trumpet and performed regularly in the school band. Upon the outbreak of World War II, the moved to Harrow, London. It was here that he formed his own band – Ron Goodwin and he later studied the trumpet in London at the Guildhall School of Music. In 1943 after a spell as an insurance clerk, Goodwin joined Campbell, Connelly and Company. His job was a copyist and arranger and went on to work in that role for the BBC and he entered the world of movie music through documentary films, which he said was a very good training. He worked as a ghostwriter for Phil Green, Stanley Black, Geraldo, from 1949 Goodwin conducted for the Polygon company, arranging and conducting recordings of Petula Clark and Jimmy Young, including the latters 1951 UK no 1 hit Too Young. In the 1950s he joined Parlophone, and worked alongside George Martin and he accompanied Peter Sellers on his Goodness Gracious Me album, and began to broadcast and make records with his Ron Goodwin Concert Orchestra. In 1953 Goodwin began arranging and conducting more than 300 recordings for over fifty artists and he simultaneously made his own series of recordings and broadcasts as Ron Goodwin and his Concert Orchestra, and in addition began to compose scores for documentary films at Merton Park Studios. In 1958, Goodwin wrote his first feature film score for Whirlpool, after Bachmann became executive producer at MGM British Studios in 1959, Goodwin composed and conducted the music for most of its productions, as well as working for other film studios. His singles work included recordings with jazz and calypso singer Frank Holder, Goodwin is primarily known for his film music and worked on more than 70 scores during his career. He composed his first feature film, Man with a Gun in 1958 and was followed by The Witness
20. Bobby Hackett – Robert Leo Bobby Hackett was an American jazz musician who played trumpet, cornet and guitar with the bands of Glenn Miller and Benny Goodman in the late 1930s and early 1940s. Hackett is probably best known for being the featured soloist on some of the Jackie Gleason mood music albums during the 1950s, Hackett was born in Providence, Rhode Island, to a family of Irish immigrants. He made his name as a follower of the cornet player Bix Beiderbecke. In the late 1930s Hackett played lead trumpet in the Vic Schoen Orchestra which backed the Andrews Sisters, Hackett can be heard on the soundtrack to the 1940 Fred Astaire movie Second Chorus. In 1939 the talent agency MCA asked Hackett to form a big band with its backing, unfortunately the band failed and Hackett was in substantial debt to MCA after it folded. Hackett joined the bands of Horace Heidt and then Glenn Miller to pay down this debt, to make matters worse, his lip was in bad shape after dental surgery, making it difficult for him to play the trumpet or cornet. Glenn Miller came to Hacketts rescue, offering him a job as a guitarist with the Miller Band, when I joined the band and I was making good money at last, accused me of selling out. Hell I wasnt selling out, I was selling in and its funny, isnt it, how you go right into the wastebasket with some critics the minute you become successful. Despite his lip problems, Hackett could still play occasional short solos, a dream come true for Hackett was his inclusion in Louis Armstrongs 1947 Town Hall Jazz Concert. In 1954, Hackett appeared as a regular on the short-lived ABC variety show The Martha Wright Show, however, what made Hackett something of a household name was his being hired by Jackie Gleason as a cornet soloist for some of Gleasons earliest mood music albums. Starting in 1952, Hackett appeared on Gleasons first Capitol Records album, the record – as well as all of Gleasons next 10 albums - went gold. Hackett went on to appear on six more Gleason LPs and this association led directly to Hackett signing with Capitol for a series of his own albums. In 1965, he toured with singer Tony Bennett, in 1966 and 1967 Hackett accompanied Bennett on two European tours. In the early 1970s, Hackett performed separately with Dizzy Gillespie, in 2012, Hackett was selected to be inducted into the Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame. Sometime in the 1930s, Bobby Hackett married Edna Hackett and he had two children with her, Barbara Hackett and Ernie Hackett. His son became a musician as well, playing the drums, Hackett died in 1976 of a heart attack, at the age of 61. The couple lived between Greenwich Village, Manhattan and Los Angeles, California while spending their summers in Chatham, the couple is survived by two children, two grandchildren, and four great grandchildren. Bobby Hackett was a Freemason and was active with St. Cecile Lodge #568 which was a specifically for musicians
21. Joe Harnell – Joseph Harnell was an American composer and arranger. His father was a performer who also played in jazz. Harnell began playing piano at age six and was performing in his fathers ensembles by age 14 and he attended the University of Miami on a music scholarship in the early 1940s, and in 1943 joined the Air Force, playing with Glenn Millers Air Force Band. He studied with Nadia Boulanger when stationed in Paris and then under William Walton at Trinity College of Music in London, after his discharge in 1946, he studied at Tanglewood under Aaron Copland and Leonard Bernstein. Eschewing the art-music world, Harnell sought work in pop and jazz and he played in Lester Lanins band at this time and found work as an accompanist for singers such as Judy Garland, Maurice Chevalier, and Marlene Dietrich. From 1958 to 1961, he was Peggy Lees full-time accompanist and arranger for the albums Anything Goes, Cole Porter and Peggy Lee & the George Shearing Quartet. In 1962, he was hurt in a car crash, and while he recovered, Harnells biggest success was with his arrangement of Fly Me to the Moon, which was a hit in the US in 1963 and which won a Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance. The song also peaked at number 6 in Harnells hometown, on WMCA in New York, the album from which it was taken went to number 3 on the Billboard 200. Harnell would go on to release nearly 20 easy listening albums, on Kapp, Columbia, Harnell was also an integral part of The Dinah Shore Chevy Show as the house pianist on many episodes. Often at the end of a show Shore would gather round Harnell at the piano and she, some of those guests were John Raitt, Gisele MacKenzie, and very often, Janet Blair. It was a low key and warm way to bring the show to its conclusion, the show ran on NBC from October 1956 to June 1963. Starting in 1964, Harnell worked with Grey Advertising as a jingle writer, Harnell also wrote the signature tune introducing United Artists movies in the 1980s, as well as the theme music for the NBC daytime soap Santa Barbara. Following this he became a faculty member at USCs Thornton School of Music as an instructor in film score composition, Harnell published an autobiography entitled Counterpoint in 2000, co-authored with television producer/director Ira Skutch, and died of heart failure on July 14,2005. Harnell and his family had been residents of Teaneck, New Jersey and his son, Jess Harnell, is a voice actor and singer, best known as the voice of Wakko Warner on the Steven Spielberg-produced animated television series Animaniacs. Joes Grandson, Jeremy, is a composer and visual artist working under the name JC Harnell or Sons of Wolves. Winner of 2011 Peoples Music Award for Best Abstract/Experimental Artist and his latest visual art work is for John Lewis, plc, and King and McGaw. New EP album out in 2013, joseph Harnell at the Internet Movie Database http, //www. joeharnell. com/home. html
22. Richard Hayman – Richard Hayman was an American arranger, harmonica player and conductor. Hayman started out as a player and arranger for the Borrah Minnevitch Harmonica Rascals before becoming an arranger for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios during the early 1940s and he did arrangements for the MGM films Girl Crazy, Meet Me in St. Louis and Thousands Cheer. From 1945-1950, he was director for the Vaughn Monroe Orchestra. In the 1950s and 1960s, Hayman recorded a series of albums for Mercury Records and his 1957 outing Havana In Hi-Fi was first in the labels pop music stereo LP series. Hayman is most famous for having been the principal arranger at the Boston Pops Orchestra for over 30 years where his arrangements are still used today. He occasionally guest-conducted there, and when Arthur Fiedler had a conflict with his job as pops conductor for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Hayman was also affiliated with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra for over 30 years. Known for his sequined jackets, harmonica solos, and corny jokes, he became its Principal Pops Conductor in 1976, leading both the Pops at Powell and Queeny Park concerts. He retired as the Principal Pops Conductor of the Grand Rapids, Michigan Symphony Orchestra and Music Director of the Space Coast Pops Orchestra in Cocoa and his biggest hit was the 1953 single Ruby. It should also be mentioned that the side of the 45rpm and 78rpm single hit Ruby was the hit Dansero which also became an international favorite hit. Perhaps for this reason the single sold thousands or perhaps millions of copies for years in the early to mid-1950s worldwide. He continued to chart into the early 1960s with titles like Night Train, haymans last event with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, where he held the title of Pops Conductor Emeritus, took place on June 27,2010, to honor his 90th birthday. The St. Louis Metro Singers, who performed with him at many Pops concerts, were also on stage at the event, Hayman is also noted for albums now regarded as Exotica. Hayman died at a hospice in New York on February 5,2014
23. Bradley Joseph – Bradley Joseph is an American composer, arranger, and producer of contemporary instrumental music. His compositions include works for orchestra, quartet, and solo piano, active since 1983, Joseph has performed in front of more than a half million people around the world. He played various instruments in bands throughout the Midwest until 1989 when Greek composer Yanni hired him for his core band after hearing a tape of his original compositions. He was a featured concert keyboardist with Yanni through six major tours and he appears in the multi-platinum album and concert film, Live at the Acropolis. Joseph also spent four years as director and lead keyboardist for Sheena Easton. Joseph is the founder of the Robbins Island Music label and his solo career began when he independently released Hear the Masses, featuring many of his Yanni bandmates. This debut was followed by Rapture, an album recorded with a 50-piece orchestra in which Joseph wrote. It was released on the Narada label and reached ZMR Airwaves Top 30, Paint the Sky was nominated for Best Neo-Classical Album in the 10th annual ZMR Music Awards. He has produced numerous CDs/DVDs and piano books and his music is included in multiple various-artist compilation albums including the 2008 release of The Weather Channel Presents, Smooth Jazz II. Bradley Joseph was born in Bird Island, Minnesota and raised in Willmar, Minnesota and he learned how to play piano from a how-to piano book he found in the piano bench. One morning his father taught him how to play a blues tune. He started playing piano at age eight, taking lessons for a year. While in junior high, he took a field trip where he saw Buddy Rich perform. He recalls, I sat in the first row and when Buddys sax player stood up to take his first solo something just clicked — the world closed in around me, I felt the power of music and knew that it was something special, a gift to be shared. Joseph played piano for the band and choir in high school. When he picked up the horn, he got a new perspective on music, gaining insight into all the different timbres available. The first band he was in was a dance band which allowed him to gain experience in every different style of music from polkas to rock. After attending Moorhead State University as a major, he led some of his own bands around the area that toured Midwest nightclubs
24. Bert Kaempfert – Berthold Heinrich Kämpfert, better known as Bert Kaempfert, was a German orchestra leader, music producer, and songwriter. He made easy listening and jazz-oriented records and wrote the music for a number of songs, including Strangers in the Night. Kaempfert was born in Hamburg, Germany, where he received his nickname, Fips. A multi-instrumentalist, he was hired by Hans Busch to play with his orchestra before serving as a bandsman in the German Navy during World War II. He later formed his own big band, toured with them, then worked as an arranger and producer, making hit records with Freddy Quinn, in 1961, he hired The Beatles to back Tony Sheridan for an album called My Bonnie. The album and its singles, released by Polydor Records, were the Beatles first commercially released recordings, Kaempferts own first hit with his orchestra had been in 1960, Wonderland by Night. Wonderland by Night couldnt get a hearing in Germany, for Kaempfert, little may have brought him more personal satisfaction than Nat King Cole recording his L-O-V-E. On October 28,1961, a man walked into the store owned by Brian Epstein to ask for a copy of My Bonnie. The store did not have it, but Epstein noted the request and was so intrigued by the idea of a Liverpool band getting a record of its own out, he personally followed up on it. This event led to his discovery of the Beatles and, through his effort, many of Berts tunes became better known as hits for other artists, Strangers in the Night, was originally recorded as part of his score for the 1966 film A Man Could Get Killed. It became a #1 hit for Frank Sinatra in 1966 and this was followed a year later with another hit for Sinatra, The World We Knew. Wooden Heart, sung by Elvis Presley in the film G. I, joe Dowells cover of Wooden Heart became a big hit, reaching #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 on August 28,1961. Bert arranged this traditional German folk song for the Presley movie and his instrumental Moon Over Naples, when given words by Snyder, became Spanish Eyes, originally a hit for Al Martino and also recorded by Engelbert Humperdinck, Presley, and many others. Danke Schoen, with words added by Kurt Schwabach and Milt Gabler, L-O-V-E, with words added by Milt Gabler, was a hit for Nat King Cole. Almost There, which reached No.67 on the U. S. charts, a jazzier number called A Swingin Safari was the initial theme tune for the long-running TV game show The Match Game used on the NBC version from 1962 to 1967. Billy Vaughns cover of A Swingin Safari also hit the Billboard charts, many of the tracks were later used in the 1969 film An Elephant Called Slowly. Tahitian Sunset was sampled extensively by the lo-fi dance artists Lemon Jelly as their track In the Bath, Kaempferts orchestra made extensive use of horns. The Brass covered Magic Trumpet, and Kaempfert returned the favor by covering Brass compadre Sol Lakes number The Mexican Shuffle, the latter tune evolved into a TV ad, The Teaberry Shuffle
25. Anita Kerr – Anita Jean Grilli, known professionally as Anita Kerr, is an American singer, arranger, composer, conductor, pianist, and music producer. She recorded and performed successfully with her vocal harmony groups in Nashville, Los Angeles, Anita was born in Memphis, Tennessee. In 1947, she married Al Kerr, and they moved to Nashville the following year so that he could take a job as a dee-jay on WKDA. Joining her were singers Carl Garvin, Jim Hall, Doug Kirkham, Mary Ellen Puckett, Evelyn Wilson, Mildred Kirkham, and Don Fotrell. The groups first recording session was with Red Foley, and their collaboration resulted in a No.16 hit on Billboards Pop chart in 1950, the following year, producer Owen Bradley signed them to record for Decca Records. Their talents in demand, Anitas group continued to sing backup for country artists in Nashville, including Eddy Arnold, Burl Ives. The groups recording sessions—initially averaging two per week—increased to eight sessions weekly by 1955, in 1956, Anita Kerrs singers won a contest on the Arthur Godfreys Talent Scouts national television program. Now, cut down to a quartet at Godfreys suggestion, the travelled to New York City two weeks out of every six to appear with Godfrey on his daily television and radio broadcasts. A few years later, Kerr and her singers performed five times a week with Jim Reeves on his radio program at WSM. The quartets roster at this time featured tenor Gil Wright, baritone Louis Nunley, alto Dottie Dillard, Singers and arranger soon began contributing to between twelve and eighteen recording sessions weekly. Having previously backed Faron Young, Chet Atkins, and Webb Pierce on SESAC radio transcription sessions, between 1959 and 1963, the group waxed sixty SESAC tracks. In 1960, as The Little Dippers, the recorded a hit single, Forever. Crediting herself as Anita & Th So-And-Sos, Kerr multi-tracked her own voice to record the song Joey Baby, the Anita Kerr Singers signed with RCA Victor in 1961. Their first album for the label was From Nashville. The Hit Sound, subsequent RCA Victor LPs extended the quartets repertoire as they explored the soul songs of Ray Charles and the compositions of Henry Mancini. The groups 1965 album We Dig Mancini won a Grammy Award for Best Performance by a Vocal Group, in addition to recording as themselves, the Singers continued to perform as backup singers in Nashville. Under her RCA contract, Kerr also arranged and produced a series of albums for The Living Voices on the RCA Camden budget label and these Living Voices recordings included the Anita Kerr Quartet, with the addition of 4 other vocalists to form an octet. In 1964, together with Chet Atkins and Jim Reeves, the Anita Kerr Singers toured Europe, the Anita Kerr Singers or The Jordanaires sang background on just about every Nashville hit in the late 50s and early 60s. She no longer wanted to just be a singer or arranger on country songs – she wanted to do pop music, jazz and do more orchestral writing
26. James Last – James Last, also known as Hansi, was a German composer and big band leader of the James Last Orchestra. Initially a jazz bassist, his trademark happy music made his numerous albums best-sellers in Germany and his composition Happy Heart became an international success in interpretations by Andy Williams and Petula Clark. His album This Is James Last remained a UK best-seller for 48 weeks, Last undertook his final tour months before his death at age 86, upon discovering in September 2014 that an illness had worsened. His final UK performance was his 90th at Londons Royal Albert Hall, Lasts trademark sound employed big band arrangements of well-known tunes with a jaunty dance beat, often heavy on bass and brass. Last was born to Louis and Martha Last in Bremen, Germany and he was the younger brother of Robert Last and Werner Last. His father was an official at the postal and public works department of the city of Bremen and he began studying the piano at age 10, though he could play simple tunes such as the folk song Hänschen klein when he was 9. His first music teacher felt he lacked any musical talent, Last started playing more actively with his second tutor and switched to the double bass as a teenager. His home city of Bremen was bombed heavily during World War II and he entered the Bückeburg Military Music School of the German Wehrmacht at the age of 14 and learned to play bass, piano and tuba. After the end of the war, he joined Hans Günther Oesterreichs Radio Bremen Dance Orchestra, in 1948 he became the leader of the Last-Becker Ensemble, which performed for seven years. He was voted as the best bassist in the country in a German jazz poll for 1950,1951 and 1952, when the Last-Becker Ensemble disbanded, he became the in-house arranger for Polydor Records, as well as a number of European radio stations. During the next decade he helped arrange hits for such as Helmut Zacharias, Freddy Quinn, Lolita, Alfred Hause. Last first released albums in the U. S. under the titles The American Patrol on Warner Bros. Records around 1964. Last 1965 album, Non-Stop Dancing, was a recording of brief renditions of songs, all tied together by an insistent dance beat. It was a hit and helped him a major European star. Over the next four decades, Last released over 190 records, on these records, he varied his formula by adding different songs from different countries and genres, as well as guest performers like Richard Clayderman and Astrud Gilberto. He also had his own television series throughout the 1970s with guests including ABBA. Lasts trademark sound employed big band arrangements of tunes with a jaunty dance beat. In the UK, his chart singles were The Seduction, the theme from American Gigolo composed by Giorgio Moroder
27. Michel Legrand – Michel Legrand is a French musical composer, arranger, conductor, and jazz pianist. Legrand is a composer, having written over 200 film and television scores. He is best known for his haunting, jazz-tinged film music. His celebrated scores for the films of French New Wave director Jacques Demy, The Umbrellas of Cherbourg and The Young Girls of Rochefort, for The Thomas Crown Affair and its title song, The Windmills of Your Mind, Legrand won his first Oscar. Legrand was born in the Bécon les Bruyères district of Courbevoie and his father Raymond Legrand was a conductor and composer renowned for hits such as Irma la douce, and his mother was Marcelle Der Mikaëlian, who married Legrand Senior in 1929. His maternal grandfather was of Armenian descent and considered a member of the bourgeoisie, Legrand has composed more than two hundred film and television scores and several musicals and has made well over a hundred albums. He has won three Oscars and five Grammys and has been nominated for an Emmy and he was 22 when his first album, I Love Paris, became one of the best-selling instrumental albums ever released. He is a jazz and classical pianist and an accomplished arranger. Legrand graduated with top honors as both a composer and a pianist, Legrand has also contributed significant work in jazz. While on a visit to the U. S, the following year, back in Paris with bassist Guy Pedersen and percussionist Gus Wallez, he recorded an album of Paris-themed songs arranged for jazz piano trio, titled Paris Jazz Piano. Nearly a decade later he recorded At Shellys Manne-Hole, a trio session with bassist Ray Brown and drummer Shelly Manne. Legrand also provided an odd scat vocal on My Funny Valentine, Not as well received as his earlier work in the field of jazz was a 1994 album for LaserLight entitled Michel Plays Legrand. More recently, in 2002, he recorded a jazz piano album reworking 14 of his classic songs. His jazz piano style is virtuosic and eclectic, drawing upon such influences as Art Tatum, Erroll Garner, Oscar Peterson, in 1966, he made the arrangements of the international song Cest si bon by Henri Betti and André Hornez for the Barbra Streisand album Color Me Barbra. In 1948, his father Raymond Legrand had conducted the orchestra for the recording of song by Les Soeurs Étienne. A number of his songs, including What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life, watch What Happens, The Summer Knows, and You Must Believe in Spring, have become jazz standards covered frequently by other artists. During various periods of work, Legrand became a conductor for orchestras in St. Petersburg, Florida, Vancouver, Montreal, Atlanta, Pittsburgh. Legrand has also recorded classical piano pieces by Erik Satie and American composers such as Amy Beach, George Gershwin, Aaron Copland, John Cage and he is a prolific recorder of jazz, popular and classical music albums, having released over one hundred