Johnny Burke (lyricist)
John Francis Burke was a lyricist and prolific between the 1920s and 1950s. His work is considered part of the Great American Songbook, his song "Swinging on a Star", from the Bing Crosby film Going My Way, won an Academy Award for Best Song in 1944. Burke was born in California; when he was still young, his family moved to Chicago, where Burke's father founded a construction business. As a youth, Burke studied drama, he attended Crane College and the University of Wisconsin–Madison, where he played piano in the orchestra. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in 1927, Burke joined the Chicago office of the Irving Berlin Publishing Company in 1926 as a pianist and song salesman, he played piano in dance bands and vaudeville. Irving Berlin Publishing transferred Burke to its New York City office, where he began to write lyrics in collaboration with composer Harold Spina. In 1932, they wrote "Shadows on the Swanee", followed in 1933 by "Annie Doesn't Live Here Anymore", their first big hit for the Guy Lombardo Orchestra.
In 1934, Burke and Spina wrote "You're Not the Only Oyster in the Stew", a novelty hit for Fats Waller, as was "My Very Good Friend, the Milkman". Burke and Spina wrote many songs that were played by leading bands of the day, including those led by Ben Pollack, Paul Whiteman and Ozzie Nelson; the Burke - Spina partnership ended in 1936 when Burke left for Hollywood. Burke's first partner in Hollywood was Arthur Johnston, he worked with Jimmy Monaco, but he was to make his mark in collaboration with Jimmy Van Heusen. The team of Burke and Van Heusen turned out some of the great hit tunes of the 1940s. Burke signed a contract with Paramount in 1939, spent his entire career with the same studio. Burke's primary function as a lyricist was working on the films of Bing Crosby. Of the 41 films on which he worked, 25 starred Bing Crosby. Seventeen songs were substantial hits, including "Pennies from Heaven", "I've Got a Pocketful of Dreams", "Only Forever", "Moonlight Becomes You" and "Sunday, Monday, or Always".
In 1939, Burke wrote the lyrics for "Scatterbrain", with music by Frankie Masters and "What's New?" with Bob Haggart. In 1955, Burke added lyrics to a standard by jazz pianist Erroll Garner entitled "Misty". Burke wrote the words and music to the Nat King Cole song "If Love Ain't There"; the film The Vagabond King was Burke's last Hollywood work. Eight years he died in New York City from a heart attack at the age of 55. Burke and Van Heusen's song "Swinging on a Star", from the Bing Crosby film Going My Way, won an Academy Award for Best Song in 1944, one of seven Academy Awards won by the film. Burke was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1970. In 1995, Burke's life was depicted in the Broadway musical revue, "Swinging on a Star". Burke was married four times, he was married to Mary Mason in the 1960s. He was married to Bess Patterson from 1939–1955. Among the landmarks of Burke's songwriting career were: with Harold Spina: "Annie Doesn't Live Here Anymore" "You're Not the Only Oyster in the Stew" "My Very Good Friend, the Milkman" "Shadows on the Swanee" "The Beat of My Heart" "Now You've Got Me Doing It" "I've Got a Warm Spot in My Heart for You" with Arthur Johnston: "Pennies from Heaven" "One Two, Button Your Shoe" "Double or Nothing" "The Moon Got in My Eyes" "All You Want to Do Is Dance" with Jimmy Monaco: "Only Forever" "I've Got a Pocketful of Dreams" "Don't Let That Moon Get Away" "An Apple for the Teacher" "On the Sentimental Side" "My Heart Is Taking Lessons" "Scatterbrain" "That Sly Old Gentleman from Featherbed Lane" "Sing a Song of Sunbeams" "East Side of Heaven" "Where the Turf Meets the Surf" with Jimmy Van Heusen: "Too Romantic" "Sweet Potato Piper" "Polka Dots and Moonbeams" "Imagination" "Moonlight Becomes You" "Sunday, Monday, or Always" "Going My Way" "Swinging on a Star" "It Could Happen to You" "And His Rockin' Horse Ran Away" "The First One Hundred Years" "But Beautiful" "Apalachicola, Fla" "Here's That Rainy Day" "It's an Old Spanish Custom" "Oh, You Crazy Moon" "To See You Is to Love You" "Suddenly It's Spring" "Like Someone in Love" " Road to Morocco" "You May Not Love Me" "It's Always You" Johnny Burke at the Songwriters Hall of Fame Johnny Burke's entry at ASCAP A collection of material relating to Burke is housed in the Great American Songbook Foundation archives
Verve Records known as The Verve Music Group, founded in 1956 by Norman Granz, is home to the world's largest jazz catalogue and includes recordings by artists such as Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone, Stan Getz and Billie Holiday, among others. It absorbed the catalogues of Granz's earlier labels, Clef Records, founded in 1946, Norgran Records, founded in 1953, material licensed to Mercury Records. Verve served as the original home of rock music acts such as The Velvet Underground, Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention; the restructured Verve Records is now part of the Verve Label Group, owned by Universal Music Group. This company is home to historic imprints including Verve Forecast Records, Impulse! Records and Decca Records. Norman Granz created Verve to produce new recordings by Ella Fitzgerald; the catalog grew throughout the 1950s and 1960s to include Charlie Parker, Bill Evans, Stan Getz, Billie Holiday, Oscar Peterson, Ben Webster, Lester Young. By 1960, Granz neared retirement. Milton Rudin, his attorney, knew that Sinatra wanted his own label.
Sinatra and Granz made a handshake deal, but negotiations broke down over price and Sinatra's desire that Granz remain head of the label. Granz sold Verve to MGM in 1961. Sinatra hired Mo Ostin, an executive at Verve, to run it. At Verve, Creed Taylor was made head producer. Taylor adopted a more commercial approach, he brought bossa nova to America with the release of Jazz Samba by Stan Getz and Charlie Byrd, Getz/Gilberto, Rain Forest by Walter Wanderley. Verve's notable arrangers included Oliver Nelson. According to Ogerman in Jazzletter, he arranged 60–70 albums for Verve from 1963–1967. In 1964, Taylor supervised the creation of a folk music subsidiary named Verve Folkways renamed Verve Forecast. Taylor left Verve in 1967 to form CTI Records. Aside from jazz, Verve's catalogue included the Righteous Brothers, the Velvet Underground, Frank Zappa & the Mothers of Invention, Rare Earth, the Blues Project, as well as a series of "Sound Impressions of an American on Tour" records, produced in cooperation with Esquire Magazine.
While the Velvet Underground's records did not sell well they went on to become a major influence in independent rock music. Their debut album, The Velvet Underground & Nico, is hailed as one of the greatest records of all time while their second album, White Light/White Heat, has a major cult following for its bold, noisy sound and poetically provocative lyricism. In the 1970s, Verve became part of PolyGram, incorporating the Mercury/EmArcy jazz catalog, which Philips, part owners of PolyGram, had earlier acquired. Verve Records became the Verve Music Group after PolyGram was merged with Seagram's Universal Music Group in 1999; the jazz holdings from the merged companies were folded into this sub-group.in 1990, British group Talk Talk signed to Polydor after conflicts with their previous label EMI regarding a lack of commercial allure on their fourth album, Spirit of Eden. Their fifth and final album, Laughing Stock, was released through Verve on September 16, 1991 and, while being divisive at the time, has since been reconsidered by critics and fans as their masterpiece and a precursor to the post-rock movement.
In the 1990s, as part of PolyGram Classics and Jazz, Verve signed Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Joe Henderson, Roy Hargrove, John Scofield, Shirley Horn, Betty Carter, Abbey Lincoln, Chris Botti, Jeff Lorber, Gino Vannelli, Art Porter, Will Downing, Incognito. When Universal and Polygram merged in 1998, Verve's holdings were merged with Universal's GRP Recording Company to become Verve Music Group. After forays into Americana and adult contemporary music, Verve was corporately aligned with Universal Music Enterprises, was no longer a stand-alone label within UMG; the Verve imprint itself manages much of the jazz catalog that once belonged to PolyGram, while the Impulse! Records imprint manages the portion of Universal's catalog, acquired from ABC Records, which itself includes the jazz catalog of the Famous Music Group, once owned by Paramount Pictures/Gulf+Western, but, sold to ABC in 1974. Meanwhile, GRP manages the rest of MCA/Universal's jazz catalog, including releases once issued on the Decca and Chess labels.
The Verve Label Group has expanded its output beyond jazz to include crossover classical music, progressive pop and show tunes. In 2016, the newly-formed Verve Label Group appointed industry veteran Danny Bennett as its president and CEO. Official site Article about Creed Taylor
Raymond Stanley Noble was an English bandleader, arranger, radio comedian, actor. Noble wrote both lyrics and music for many popular songs during the British dance band era, known as the "Golden Age of British music", notably for his longtime friend and associate Al Bowlly, including "Love Is the Sweetest Thing", "Cherokee", "The Touch of Your Lips", "I Hadn't Anyone Till You", his signature tune, "The Very Thought of You". Noble played a radio comedian opposite American ventriloquist Edgar Bergen's stage act of Mortimer Snerd and Charlie McCarthy, American comedy duo Burns and Allen transferring these roles from radio to TV and popular films. Noble was born at 1 Montpelier Terrace in the Montpelier area of England. A blue plaque on the house commemorates him. Noble studied at the Royal Academy of Music and in 1927 won a competition for the best British dance band orchestrator, advertised in Melody Maker. In 1929, he became leader of the New Mayfair Dance Orchestra, an HMV Records studio band that featured members of many of the top hotel orchestras of the day.
The most popular vocalist with Noble's studio band was Al Bowlly, who joined in 1930. During this time Noble co-wrote "Turkish Delight", "By the Fireside" and "Goodnight, Sweetheart"; the latter song was a number one hit for Guy Lombardo in the United States charts. It was used on the original television series Star Trek episode The City on the Edge of Forever. Noble moved to New York City in 1934; the Bowlly/Noble recordings with the British New Mayfair Dance Orchestra on HMV had achieved popularity in the United States and Noble had several number one hits on the US pop singles charts: "Love is the Sweetest Thing", 1933, #1 for five weeks. Noble took Al Bowlly and his drummer Bill Harty to the US and asked Glenn Miller to recruit American musicians to complete the band. Miller played the trombone in the Ray Noble orchestra which performed Glenn Miller's composition "Dese Dem Dose" as part of the medley "Dese Dem Dose/An Hour Ago This Minute/Solitude" during a performance at the Rainbow Room in 1935.
The American Ray Noble band had a successful run at the Rainbow Room in New York City with Bowlly as principal vocalist. Although Noble was no singer, he did appear twice as an upper-class Englishman on two of his more popular New York records, 1935's "Top Hat" and 1937's "Slumming on Park Avenue". Noble was an arranger who scored many record hits in the 1930s: "Mad About the Boy", "Paris in the Spring" and "Easy to Love", Noble and his orchestra appeared in the 1937 film A Damsel in Distress with Fred Astaire, Joan Fontaine, George Burns and Gracie Allen. Noble played a somewhat "dense" character, in love with Gracie Allen. Al Bowlly returned to England in 1938 but Noble continued to lead bands in America, moving into an acting career portraying a stereotypical upper-class English idiot. Ray Noble played the piano but did so with his orchestra. In a movie short from the 1940s featuring Ray Noble and Buddy Clark, Ray Noble is asked by the announcer to play one of his most popular hits, he sits down at the piano and plays "Goodnight, Sweetheart".
Ray Noble provided music for many radio shows such as The Chase and Sanborn Hour, The Charlie McCarthy Show and Allen and On Stage with Cathy and Elliott Lewis and guest-appeared in some of their films. He worked with Bergen for nearly fifteen years, playing the foil to McCarthy and the slow-witted Mortimer Snerd, his orchestra appeared with Edgar Bergen in the 1942 film Here We Go Again, he provided the orchestration for the 1942 Lou Gehrig biopic The Pride of the Yankees starring Gary Cooper. Noble's last major successes as a bandleader came with Buddy Clark in the late 1940s; the ventriloquist TV show ended in the mid-1950s, Noble retired to Santa Barbara, California. In the late 1960s Noble relocated to Jersey in the Channel Islands. In March 1978 he flew to London for treatment of cancer, died of the disease at a London hospital. Specialist dance band radio stations continue to play his records. Ray Noble has featured on the Manx Radio programme Sweet & Swing, presented by Howard Caine. In 1987 Noble was inducted into the Big Jazz Hall of Fame.
In 1996 Noble was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. In 2005 "The Very Thought of You", recorded by Ray Noble and His Orchestra on Victor in 1934, received the Grammy Hall of Fame Award In 1938 the Noble composition "You're So Desirable" was recorded by Billie Holiday and Teddy Wilson The Noble and Bowlly 1934 recording of "Midnight, the Stars and You" was prominently featured on the soundtrack of Stanley Kubrick's 1980 film The Shining In 1990 the Noble composition "You're So Desirable" was recorded by Robert Palmer In the 1990 film, The Russia House, protagonist "Barley" Blair, played by Sean Connery, is portrayed as having once played in the "great Ray Noble's Band" Peter Gammond, "Noble, Raymond Stanley", Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004. Retrieved 29 April 2012. Ray Noble: Biography. – Songwriters Hall of Fame. Wright, John. – Al Bowlly's time with the Ray Noble Orchestra
Abe Lyman was a popular bandleader from the 1920s to the 1940s. He made recordings, appeared in films and provided the music for numerous radio shows, including Your Hit Parade, his name at birth was Abraham Simon. He and his brother, changed their last name to Lyman because they both thought it sounded better. Abe learned to play the drums when he was young, at the age of 14 he had a job as a drummer in a Chicago café. Around 1919, he was playing music with two other notable future big band leaders, Henry Halstead and Gus Arnheim, in California. In Los Angeles Mike Lyman opened the Sunset, a night club popular with such film stars as Mary Pickford, Norma Talmadge, Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd; when Abe's nine-piece band first played at the Sunset, it was a success, but the club closed after celebrities signed contracts stating they were not to be seen at clubs. For an engagement at the Cocoanut Grove in The Ambassador Hotel on April 1, 1922, Abe added a violinist and saxophonist.
Opening night drew a large crowd of 1500 guests in the Cocoanut Grove, plus another 500 more outside. Lyman appeared on radio as early as 1922, his orchestra was broadcast from The Ambassador Hotel by late March on KOG. After the band cut their first record under the local label Nordskog Records, they moved a year to Brunswick Records in summer of 1923. There they made many recordings and were one of Brunswick's leading orchestras through 1935, when Lyman signed to Decca Records. In late 1937, Lyman signed with Victor, he recorded prolifically for them through 1942. The Lyman Orchestra toured Europe in 1929, appearing at the Kit Cat Club and the Palladium in London and at the Moulin Rouge and the Perroquet in Paris. Lyman and his orchestra were featured in a number of early talkies, including Hold Everything, Paramount on Parade, Good News and Madam Satan. In 1931, Abe Lyman and his orchestra recorded a number of soundtracks for the Merrie Melodies cartoon series. Notable musicians in the Lyman Orchestra included Ray Lopez, Gussie Mueller, Orlando "Slim" Martin.
During the 1930s, the Lyman Orchestra was heard on such shows as Accordiana and Waltz Time every Friday evening and on NBC, Coast to Coast. Under the name "Rose Blane" Lyman's wife was vocalist with the band during this period. Lyman and his orchestra sat in for Phil Harris on the Jack Benny program in 1943 when Harris served in the Merchant Marines; when Lyman was 50 years old, he left the music industry and went into the restaurant management business. He died in Beverly Hills, California at the age of 60. Ate Van Delden: "Abe Lyman-The Early Years" Red Hot Jazz: Abe Lyman Abe Lyman's California Ambassador Hotel Orchestra
Dorothy Fields was an American librettist and lyricist. She wrote over 400 songs for Broadway films, her best-known pieces include "The Way You Look Tonight", "A Fine Romance", "On the Sunny Side of the Street", "Don't Blame Me", "Pick Yourself Up", "I'm in the Mood for Love", "You Couldn't Be Cuter" and "Big Spender". Throughout her career, she collaborated with various influential figures in the American musical theater, including Jerome Kern, Cy Coleman, Irving Berlin, Jimmy McHugh. Along with Ann Ronell, Dana Suesse, Bernice Petkere, Kay Swift, she was one of the first successful Tin Pan Alley and Hollywood female songwriters. Fields was born in Allenhurst, New Jersey, grew up in New York City. In 1923, Fields graduated from the Benjamin School for Girls in New York City. At school, she was outstanding in the subjects of English and basketball, her poems were published in the school's literary magazine. Her family was involved in show business, her father, Lew Fields, was a Jewish immigrant from Poland who partnered with Joe Weber to become one of the most popular comedy duos near the end of the nineteenth century.
They were known as the Fields vaudeville act. When the duo separated in 1904, Lew Fields went on to further his career in another direction, by becoming one of the most influential theater producers of his time. From 1904 until 1916, he produced about 40 Broadway shows, was nicknamed “The King of Musical Comedy” because of his achievements, her mother was Rose Harris. She had two older brothers and Herbert, who became successful on Broadway: Joseph as a writer and producer, Herbert as a writer who became Dorothy's collaborator. Despite her natural familial connections to the theatre via her father, he disapproved of her choice to pursue acting and did everything he could to prevent her from becoming a serious actress; this began. Hence Dorothy began working as a teacher and a laboratory assistant, whilst secretly submitting work to magazines. In 1926, Fields met the popular song composer J. Fred Coots, who proposed that the two begin writing songs together. Nothing came out of this interaction and introduction.
Fields's career as a professional songwriter took off in 1928 when Jimmy McHugh, who had seen some of her early work, invited her to provide some lyrics for him for Blackbirds of 1928. The show, starring Adelaide Hall, became. Fields and McHugh teamed up until 1935. Songs from this period include "I Can't Give You Anything But Love", "Exactly Like You", "On the Sunny Side of the Street". During the 1920s, she and McHugh wrote specialty numbers for the various Cotton Club revues, many of which were recorded by Duke Ellington. In the mid 1930s, Fields started to write lyrics for films and collaborated with other composers, including Jerome Kern. With Kern, she worked on the movie version of Roberta, on their greatest success, Swing Time; the song "The Way You Look Tonight" earned the Fields/Kern team an Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1936. She wrote the lyrics for the songs in the 1936 movie The King Steps Out, based on the early years of Empress Elisabeth of Austria, directed by Josef von Sternberg.
Fields returned to New York and worked again on Broadway shows, but now as a librettist, first with Arthur Schwartz on Stars In Your Eyes. In the 1940s, she teamed up with her brother Herbert Fields, with whom she wrote the books for three Cole Porter shows, Let's Face It!, Something for the Boys, Mexican Hayride. In 1946, Fields approached Oscar Hammerstein II with her idea for a new musical based on the life of famous female sharpshooter Annie Oakley. Hammerstein agreed to produce the show. Kern and Fields were signed on to write the songs in the show. Kern died before the two were able to begin working on the project, Irving Berlin was hired to replace him. Together and her brother Herbert wrote the book for Annie Get Your Gun, while Berlin provided all the music; the show, starring Ethel Merman, was a huge success. In the 1950s, her biggest success was the show Redhead, which won five Tony Awards, including Best Musical; when she started collaborating with Cy Coleman in the 1960s, her career took a new turn.
Their first work together was Sweet Charity. Her last hit was from their second collaboration in Seesaw; the show began on Broadway on March 18, 1973, ended its run on December 8, 1973. Its signature song was "It's Not Where You Start, It's Where You Finish." Throughout her 48-year career, Fields cowrote more than 400 songs and worked on 15 stage musicals and 26 movies. Her lyrics were known for their strong characterization, clarity in language, humor, she was a lifelong lover of classical music. Fields' professional longevity was rare at the time for a songwriter. Fields is a member of the American Theater Hall of Fame, inducted posthumously in 1988. Fields had disciplined work habits, she was known to spend about eight weeks researching and making notes on a project before returning to her regular 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. daily work routine. Fields died of a heart attack on March 28, 1974, at the age of 69; the New York Times reported "Dorothy Fields, the versatil
Matthew Loveland Dennis was an American singer, band leader and writer of music for popular songs. Dennis was born in Seattle, United States, his mother was a violinist and his father a singer, the family was in vaudeville, so he was early exposed to music. In 1933 he joined Horace Heidt's orchestra as a pianist. On, he formed his own band, with Dick Haymes as vocalist, he became vocal coach and accompanist for Martha Tilton, worked with a new vocal group, The Stafford Sisters. Jo Stafford, one of the sisters, joined the Tommy Dorsey band in 1940 and persuaded Dorsey to hire Dennis as arranger and composer. Dennis wrote prolifically, with 14 of his songs recorded by the Dorsey band in one year alone, including "Everything Happens to Me", an early hit for Frank Sinatra. After four years in the United States Air Force in World War II, Dennis returned to music writing and arranging, getting a boost from his old friend Dick Haymes, who hired him to be the music director for his radio program. With lyricist Tom Adair he wrote songs for Haymes' program.
Dennis made six albums. Pianist Dave Brubeck and his quartet recorded an entire album of Dennis's compositions, released as Angel Eyes in 1965. In 2012, Jasmine Records re-released four of Dennis' records as "Welcome Matt"; the collection included "Plays and Sings Matt Dennis", a 1958 live performance by Dennis' piano trio, of twelve tunes that Dennis had co-authored. Dennis died in Riverside, California at the age of 88. "Angel Eyes" "Compared to You" "Everything Happens to Me" "It Wasn't the Stars" "Junior and Julie" "Let's Get Away from It All" "Little Man with a Candy Cigar" "Love Turns Winter to Spring" "Show Me the Way to Get Out of This World" "The Night We Called It a Day" "Violets for Your Furs" "Will You Still Be Mine" Biography of Matt Dennis Matt Dennis and Angel Eyes Matt Dennis at AllMusic Matt Dennis discography at Discogs Matt Dennis on IMDb
Ella Sings Gershwin
Ella Sings Gershwin is a 1950 studio album by Ella Fitzgerald, accompanied by the pianist Ellis Larkins. Issued on DL5300 on the Decca label, this was Fitzgerald's first album. On 10" vinyl, which preceded album releases on 12" vinyl, it featured eight tracks; the complete album was combined with Fitzgerald's 1954 album Songs in a Mellow Mood and re-issued on CD in 1994 by MCA Records on the GRP Jazz label under the title Pure Ella. Fitzgerald released two other albums of all Gershwin material, Ella Fitzgerald Sings the George and Ira Gershwin Songbook and Nice Work If You Can Get It. For the 1950 Decca Records 10" LP. - 3:14 "Maybe" - 3:21 "Soon" - 2:44All music composed by George Gershwin and all lyrics written by Ira Gershwin. Ella Fitzgerald - vocals Ellis Larkins - piano