Anthony Dominick Benedetto, known professionally as Tony Bennett, is an American singer of traditional pop standards, big band, show tunes, jazz. He is a painter, having created works under the name Anthony Benedetto that are on permanent public display in several institutions, he is the founder of the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts in Astoria, New York. Born and raised in Astoria to an Italian-American family, Bennett began singing at an early age, he fought in the final stages of World War II as a U. S. Army infantryman in the European Theater. Afterward, he developed his singing technique, signed with Columbia Records and had his first number-one popular song with "Because of You" in 1951. Several top hits such as "Rags to Riches" followed in early 1953, he refined his approach to encompass jazz singing. He reached an artistic peak in the late 1950s with albums such as The Beat of My Heart and Basie Swings, Bennett Sings. In 1962, Bennett recorded his signature song, "I Left My Heart in San Francisco".
His career and his personal life experienced an extended downturn during the height of the rock music era. Bennett staged a comeback in the late 1980s and 1990s, putting out gold record albums again and expanding his reach to the MTV Generation while keeping his musical style intact, he remains a popular and critically praised recording concert performer in the 2010s. He has won 19 Grammy Awards and two Emmy Awards, was named an NEA Jazz Master and a Kennedy Center Honoree. Bennett has sold over 50 million records worldwide. Anthony Dominick Benedetto was born on August 3, 1926, in the Astoria neighborhood of New York City's Queens borough to grocer John Benedetto and seamstress Anna Suraci. In 1906, John had emigrated from Podàrgoni, a rural eastern district of the southern Italian city of Reggio Calabria. Anna had been born in the U. S. shortly after her parents emigrated from the Calabria region in 1899. Other relatives came over as well as part of the mass migration of Italians to America. Tony grew up with an older sister, an older brother, John Jr.
With a father, ailing and unable to work, the children grew up in poverty. John Sr. instilled in his son a love of art and literature and a compassion for human suffering, but died when Tony was 10 years old. The experience of growing up in the Great Depression and a distaste for the effects of the Hoover Administration would make the child a lifelong Democrat. Bennett grew up listening to Al Jolson, Eddie Cantor, Judy Garland, Bing Crosby as well as jazz artists such as Louis Armstrong, Jack Teagarden, Joe Venuti, his Uncle Dick was a tap dancer in vaudeville, giving him an early window into show business, his Uncle Frank was the Queens borough library commissioner. By age 10 he was singing, performed at the opening of the Triborough Bridge, standing next to Mayor Fiorello La Guardia who patted him on the head. Drawing was another early passion of his. S. 141 and anticipated a career in commercial art. He began singing for money at age 13, performing as a singing waiter in several Italian restaurants around his native Queens.
He attended New York's School of Industrial Art where he studied painting and music and would appreciate their emphasis on proper technique. But he dropped out at age 16 to help support his family, he worked as a copy boy and runner for the Associated Press in Manhattan and in several other low-skilled, low-paying jobs. However, he set his sights on a professional singing career, returning to performing as a singing waiter and winning amateur nights all around the city, having a successful engagement at a Paramus, New Jersey, nightclub. Benedetto was drafted into the United States Army in November 1944, during the final stages of World War II, he did basic training at Fort Robinson as part of becoming an infantry rifleman. Benedetto ran afoul of a sergeant from the South who disliked the Italian from New York City and heavy doses of KP duty or BAR cleaning resulted. Processed through the huge Le Havre replacement depot, in January 1945, he was assigned as a replacement infantryman to the 255th Infantry Regiment of the 63rd Infantry Division, a unit filling in for the heavy losses suffered in the Battle of the Bulge.
He moved across France, into Germany. As March 1945 began, he joined the front line and what he would describe as a "front-row seat in hell."As the German Army was pushed back to its homeland and his company saw bitter fighting in cold winter conditions hunkering down in foxholes as German 88 mm guns fired on them. At the end of March, they crossed the Rhine and entered Germany, engaging in dangerous house-to-house, town-after-town fighting to clean out German soldiers. During his time in combat, Benedetto narrowly escaped death several times; the experience made him a pacifist. I just said,'This is not life; this is not life.'" At the war's conclusion he was involved in the liberation of a Nazi concentration camp near Landsberg, where some American prisoners of war from the 63rd Division had been held. Benedetto stayed in Germany as part of the occupying force, but was assigned to an informal Special Services band unit that would entertain nearby American forces, his dining with a black friend from high school – at a time when the Army was still racially segregated – led to his being demoted and reassigned to Graves Registration Service duties.
Bessie Smith was an American blues singer. Nicknamed the Empress of the Blues, she was the most popular female blues singer of the 1920s and 1930s, she is regarded as one of the greatest singers of her era and was a major influence on fellow blues singers, as well as jazz vocalists. The 1900 census indicates that her family reported that Bessie Smith was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, in July 1892; the 1910 census gives her age as 16, a birth date of April 15, 1894 appears on subsequent documents and was observed as her birthday by the Smith family. The 1870 and 1880 censuses report three older half-siblings, but interviews with Smith's family and contemporaries contain no mention of them among her siblings, she was William Smith, a laborer and part-time Baptist preacher. He died. By the time Bessie was nine, her mother and a brother had died, her older sister Viola took charge of caring for her siblings. To earn money for their impoverished household and her brother Andrew began busking on the streets of Chattanooga.
She danced as he played the guitar. Their favorite location was in front of the White Elephant Saloon at Thirteenth and Elm streets, in the heart of the city's African-American community. In 1904, her oldest brother Clarence left home, joining a small traveling troupe owned by Moses Stokes. "If Bessie had been old enough, she would have gone with him," said Clarence's widow, Maud. "That's why he left without telling her, but Clarence told me she was ready then. Of course, she was only a child."In 1912, Clarence returned to Chattanooga with the Stokes troupe and arranged an audition for his sister with the troupe managers and Cora Fisher. She was hired as a dancer rather than a singer, because the company included the well-known singer Ma Rainey. Smith moved on to performing in various chorus lines, making the "81" Theater in Atlanta her home base, she performed in shows on the black-owned circuit and became its biggest star after she signed a recording contract with Columbia Records. Smith's recording career began in 1923.
Despite her success, neither she nor her music was accepted in all circles. She once auditioned for Black Swan records and was dismissed because she was considered too rough, she stopped singing to spit. In fact her admirers and black, considered her a “rough” woman, she was living in Philadelphia, when she met Jack Gee, a security guard, whom she married on June 7, 1923, just as her first record was being released. During the marriage Smith became the highest-paid black entertainer of the day, heading her own shows, which sometimes featured as many as 40 troupers, touring in her own custom-built railroad car, their marriage was stormy with infidelity on both sides, including numerous female lovers for Bessie. Gee was never adjusted to show business life or to Smith's bisexuality. In 1929, when she learned of his affair with another singer, Gertrude Saunders, Smith ended the relationship, although neither of them sought a divorce. Smith entered a common-law marriage with an old friend, Richard Morgan, Lionel Hampton's uncle.
She stayed with him until her death. All contemporary accounts indicate that while Rainey did not teach Smith to sing, she helped her develop a stage presence. Smith began forming her own act at Atlanta's "81" Theater. By 1920, she had established a reputation along the East Coast. In 1920, sales of over 100,000 copies of "Crazy Blues," recorded for Okeh Records by the singer Mamie Smith, pointed to a new market; the recording industry had not directed its product to black people, but the success of the record led to a search for female blues singers. Bessie Smith was signed to Columbia Records in 1923 by Frank Walker, a talent agent who had seen her perform years earlier, her first session for Columbia was on February 15, 1923. For most of 1923, her records were issued on Columbia's regular A-series; when the company established a "race records" series, Smith's "Cemetery Blues" was the first issued. Both sides of her first record, "Downhearted Blues" backed with "Gulf Coast Blues", were hits. Smith became a headliner on the T.
O. B. A. Circuit and rose to become its top attraction in the 1920s. Working a heavy theater schedule during the winter and performing in tent shows the rest of the year, Smith became the highest-paid black entertainer of her day. Columbia nicknamed her "Queen of the Blues," but the press soon upgraded her title to "Empress of the Blues". Smith’s music stressed independence and sexual freedom, implicitly arguing that working-class women did not have to alter their behavior to be worthy of respect. Smith had a strong contralto voice, which recorded well from her first session, conducted when recordings were made acoustically; the advent of electrical recording made the power of her voice more evident. Her first electrical recording was "Cake Walking Babies ", recorded on May 5, 1925. Smith benefited from the new technology of radio broadcasting on stations in the segregated South. For example, after giving a concert to a white-only audience at a theater in Memphis, Tennessee, in O
Edward Kennedy "Duke" Ellington was an American composer and leader of a jazz orchestra, which he led from 1923 until his death over a career spanning more than fifty years. Born in Washington, D. C. Ellington was based in New York City from the mid-1920s onward and gained a national profile through his orchestra's appearances at the Cotton Club in Harlem. In the 1930s, his orchestra toured in Europe. Although considered to have been a pivotal figure in the history of jazz, Ellington embraced the phrase "beyond category" as a liberating principle and referred to his music as part of the more general category of American Music rather than to a musical genre such as jazz; some of the jazz musicians who were members of Ellington's orchestra, such as saxophonist Johnny Hodges, are considered to be among the best players in the idiom. Ellington melded them into the best-known orchestral unit in the history of jazz; some members stayed with the orchestra for several decades. A master at writing miniatures for the three-minute 78 rpm recording format, Ellington wrote more than one thousand compositions.
Ellington recorded songs written by his bandsmen, for example Juan Tizol's "Caravan", "Perdido", which brought a Spanish tinge to big band jazz. In the early 1940s, Ellington began a nearly thirty-year collaboration with composer-arranger-pianist Billy Strayhorn, whom he called his writing and arranging companion. With Strayhorn, he composed many extended compositions, or suites, as well as additional short pieces. Following an appearance at the Newport Jazz Festival, in July 1956, Ellington and his orchestra enjoyed a major revival and embarked on world tours. Ellington recorded for most American record companies of his era, performed in several films, scored several, composed a handful of stage musicals. Ellington was noted for his inventive use of the orchestra, or big band, for his eloquence and charisma, his reputation continued to rise after he died, he was awarded a posthumous Pulitzer Prize Special Award for music in 1999. Ellington was born on April 29, 1899, to James Edward Ellington and Daisy Ellington in Washington, D.
C. Both his parents were pianists. Daisy played parlor songs and James preferred operatic arias, they lived with his maternal grandparents at 2129 Ida Place, NW, in the West End neighborhood of Washington, D. C. Duke's father was born in Lincolnton, North Carolina, on April 15, 1879, moved to Washington, D. C. in 1886 with his parents. Daisy Kennedy was born in Washington, D. C. on January 4, 1879, the daughter of a former American slave. James Ellington made blueprints for the United States Navy; when Ellington was a child, his family showed racial pride and support in their home, as did many other families. African Americans in D. C. worked to protect their children from the era's Jim Crow laws. At the age of seven, Ellington began taking piano lessons from Marietta Clinkscales. Daisy surrounded her son with dignified women to reinforce his manners and teach him to live elegantly. Ellington's childhood friends noticed that his casual, offhand manner, his easy grace, his dapper dress gave him the bearing of a young nobleman, began calling him "Duke."
Ellington credited his friend Edgar McEntree for the nickname. "I think he felt that in order for me to be eligible for his constant companionship, I should have a title. So he called me Duke."Though Ellington took piano lessons, he was more interested in baseball. "President Roosevelt would come by on his horse sometimes, stop and watch us play", he recalled. Ellington went to Armstrong Technical High School in Washington, D. C, he gained his first job selling peanuts at Washington Senators baseball games. In the summer of 1914, while working as a soda jerk at the Poodle Dog Café, Ellington wrote his first composition, "Soda Fountain Rag", he created the piece by ear, as he had not yet learned to write music. "I would play the'Soda Fountain Rag' as a one-step, two-step, waltz and fox trot", Ellington recalled. "Listeners never knew. I was established as having my own repertoire." In his autobiography, Music is my Mistress, Ellington wrote that he missed more lessons than he attended, feeling at the time that playing the piano was not his talent.
Ellington started sneaking into Frank Holiday's Poolroom at the age of fourteen. Hearing the poolroom pianists play ignited Ellington's love for the instrument, he began to take his piano studies seriously. Among the many piano players he listened to were Doc Perry, Lester Dishman, Louis Brown, Turner Layton, Gertie Wells, Clarence Bowser, Sticky Mack, Blind Johnny, Cliff Jackson, Claude Hopkins, Phil Wurd, Caroline Thornton, Luckey Roberts, Eubie Blake, Joe Rochester, Harvey Brooks. Ellington began listening to, imitating ragtime pianists, not only in Washington, D. C. but in Philadelphia and Atlantic City, where he vacationed with his mother during the summer months. He would sometimes hear strange music played by those who could not afford much sheet music, so for variations, they played the sheets upside down. Henry Lee Grant, a Dunbar High School music teacher, gave him private lessons in harmony. With the additional guidance of Washington pianist and band leader Oliver "Doc" Perry, Ellington learned to read sheet music, project a professional style, improve his technique.
Ellington was inspired by his first encounters with stride pianists James P. Johnson and Luckey Roberts. In New York he took advice from Will Marion Cook, Fats Waller, Sidney Bechet. Ellington started to play gigs in cafés and clubs in and aro
A phonograph record is an analog sound storage medium in the form of a flat disc with an inscribed, modulated spiral groove. The groove starts near the periphery and ends near the center of the disc. At first, the discs were made from shellac. In recent decades, records have sometimes been called vinyl records, or vinyl; the phonograph disc record was the primary medium used for music reproduction throughout the 20th century. It had co-existed with the phonograph cylinder from the late 1880s and had superseded it by around 1912. Records retained the largest market share when new formats such as the compact cassette were mass-marketed. By the 1980s, digital media, in the form of the compact disc, had gained a larger market share, the vinyl record left the mainstream in 1991. Since the 1990s, records continue to be manufactured and sold on a smaller scale, are used by disc jockeys and released by artists in dance music genres, listened to by a growing niche market of audiophiles; the phonograph record has made a notable niche resurgence in the early 21st century – 9.2 million records were sold in the U.
S. in 2014, a 260% increase since 2009. In the UK sales have increased five-fold from 2009 to 2014; as of 2017, 48 record pressing facilities remain worldwide, 18 in the United States and 30 in other countries. The increased popularity of vinyl has led to the investment in new and modern record-pressing machines. Only two producers of lacquers remain: Apollo Masters in California, MDC in Japan. Phonograph records are described by their diameter in inches, the rotational speed in revolutions per minute at which they are played, their time capacity, determined by their diameter and speed. Vinyl records may be scratched or warped if stored incorrectly but if they are not exposed to high heat, carelessly handled or broken, a vinyl record has the potential to last for centuries; the large cover are valued by collectors and artists for the space given for visual expression when it comes to the long play vinyl LP. The phonautograph, patented by Léon Scott in 1857, used a vibrating diaphragm and stylus to graphically record sound waves as tracings on sheets of paper, purely for visual analysis and without any intent of playing them back.
In the 2000s, these tracings were first scanned by audio engineers and digitally converted into audible sound. Phonautograms of singing and speech made by Scott in 1860 were played back as sound for the first time in 2008. Along with a tuning fork tone and unintelligible snippets recorded as early as 1857, these are the earliest known recordings of sound. In 1877, Thomas Edison invented the phonograph. Unlike the phonautograph, it could both record and reproduce sound. Despite the similarity of name, there is no documentary evidence that Edison's phonograph was based on Scott's phonautograph. Edison first tried recording sound on a wax-impregnated paper tape, with the idea of creating a "telephone repeater" analogous to the telegraph repeater he had been working on. Although the visible results made him confident that sound could be physically recorded and reproduced, his notes do not indicate that he reproduced sound before his first experiment in which he used tinfoil as a recording medium several months later.
The tinfoil was wrapped around a grooved metal cylinder and a sound-vibrated stylus indented the tinfoil while the cylinder was rotated. The recording could be played back immediately; the Scientific American article that introduced the tinfoil phonograph to the public mentioned Marey and Barlow as well as Scott as creators of devices for recording but not reproducing sound. Edison invented variations of the phonograph that used tape and disc formats. Numerous applications for the phonograph were envisioned, but although it enjoyed a brief vogue as a startling novelty at public demonstrations, the tinfoil phonograph proved too crude to be put to any practical use. A decade Edison developed a improved phonograph that used a hollow wax cylinder instead of a foil sheet; this proved to be both a better-sounding and far more useful and durable device. The wax phonograph cylinder created the recorded sound market at the end of the 1880s and dominated it through the early years of the 20th century. Lateral-cut disc records were developed in the United States by Emile Berliner, who named his system the "gramophone", distinguishing it from Edison's wax cylinder "phonograph" and American Graphophone's wax cylinder "graphophone".
Berliner's earliest discs, first marketed in 1889, only in Europe, were 12.5 cm in diameter, were played with a small hand-propelled machine. Both the records and the machine were adequate only for use as a toy or curiosity, due to the limited sound quality. In the United States in 1894, under the Berliner Gramophone trademark, Berliner started marketing records of 7 inches diameter with somewhat more substantial entertainment value, along with somewhat more substantial gramophones to play them. Berliner's records had poor sound quality compared to wax cylinders, but his manufacturing associate Eldridge R. Johnson improved it. Abandoning Berliner's "Gramophone" tradem
Rock and roll
Rock and roll is a genre of popular music that originated and evolved in the United States during the late 1940s and early 1950s from musical styles such as gospel, jump blues, boogie woogie, rhythm and blues, along with country music. While elements of what was to become rock and roll can be heard in blues records from the 1920s and in country records of the 1930s, the genre did not acquire its name until 1954. According to Greg Kot, "rock and roll" refers to a style of popular music originating in the U. S. in the 1950s prior to its development by the mid-1960s into "the more encompassing international style known as rock music, though the latter continued to be known as rock and roll." For the purpose of differentiation, this article deals with the first definition. In the earliest rock and roll styles, either the piano or saxophone was the lead instrument, but these instruments were replaced or supplemented by guitar in the middle to late 1950s; the beat is a dance rhythm with an accentuated backbeat, always provided by a snare drum.
Classic rock and roll is played with one or two electric guitars, a double bass or string bass or an electric bass guitar, a drum kit. Beyond a musical style and roll, as seen in movies, in fan magazines, on television, influenced lifestyles, fashion and language. In addition and roll may have contributed to the civil rights movement because both African-American and white American teenagers enjoyed the music, it went on to spawn various genres without the characteristic backbeat, that are now more called "rock music" or "rock". The term "rock and roll" now has at least two different meanings, both in common usage; the American Heritage Dictionary and the Merriam-Webster Dictionary both define rock and roll as synonymous with rock music. Encyclopædia Britannica, on the other hand, regards it as the music that originated in the mid-1950s and developed "into the more encompassing international style known as rock music"; the phrase "rocking and rolling" described the movement of a ship on the ocean, but was used by the early twentieth century, both to describe the spiritual fervor of black church rituals and as a sexual analogy.
Various gospel and swing recordings used the phrase before it became used more – but still intermittently – in the 1940s, on recordings and in reviews of what became known as "rhythm and blues" music aimed at a black audience. In 1934, the song "Rock and Roll" by the Boswell Sisters appeared in the film Transatlantic Merry-Go-Round. In 1942, Billboard magazine columnist Maurie Orodenker started to use the term "rock-and-roll" to describe upbeat recordings such as "Rock Me" by Sister Rosetta Tharpe. By 1943, the "Rock and Roll Inn" in South Merchantville, New Jersey, was established as a music venue. In 1951, Ohio, disc jockey Alan Freed began playing this music style while popularizing the phrase to describe it; the origins of rock and roll have been fiercely debated by historians of music. There is general agreement that it arose in the Southern United States – a region that would produce most of the major early rock and roll acts – through the meeting of various influences that embodied a merging of the African musical tradition with European instrumentation.
The migration of many former slaves and their descendants to major urban centers such as St. Louis, New York City, Chicago and Buffalo meant that black and white residents were living in close proximity in larger numbers than before, as a result heard each other's music and began to emulate each other's fashions. Radio stations that made white and black forms of music available to both groups, the development and spread of the gramophone record, African-American musical styles such as jazz and swing which were taken up by white musicians, aided this process of "cultural collision"; the immediate roots of rock and roll lay in the rhythm and blues called "race music", country music of the 1940s and 1950s. Significant influences were jazz, gospel and folk. Commentators differ in their views of which of these forms were most important and the degree to which the new music was a re-branding of African-American rhythm and blues for a white market, or a new hybrid of black and white forms. In the 1930s, swing, both in urban-based dance bands and blues-influenced country swing, were among the first music to present African-American sounds for a predominantly white audience.
One noteworthy example of a jazz song with recognizably rock and roll elements is Big Joe Turner with pianist Pete Johnson's 1939 single Roll'Em Pete, regarded as an important precursor of rock and roll. The 1940s saw the increased use of blaring horns, shouted lyrics and boogie woogie beats in jazz-based music. During and after World War II, with shortages of fuel and limitations on audiences and available personnel, large jazz bands were less economical and tended to be replaced by smaller combos, using guitars and drums. In the same period on the West Coast and in the Midwest, the development of jump blues, with its guitar riffs, prominent beats and shouted lyrics, prefigured many developments. In the documentary film Hail! Hail! Rock'n' Roll, Keith Richards proposes that Chuck Berry developed his brand of rock and roll by transposing the familiar two-note lead line of jump blues piano directly to the electric guitar, creatin
Clifton Avon Edwards — known as "Ukulele Ike" — was an American musician, singer and voice actor, who enjoyed considerable popularity in the 1920s and early 1930s, specializing in jazzy renditions of pop standards and novelty tunes. He had a number-one hit with "Singin' in the Rain" in 1929, he did voices for animated cartoons in his career, is best known as the voice of Jiminy Cricket in Walt Disney's Pinocchio and Fun and Fancy Free. Edwards was born in Missouri, he left school at age 14 and soon moved to St. Louis and Saint Charles, where he entertained as a singer in saloons; as many places had pianos in bad shape or none at all, Edwards taught himself to play ukulele to serve as his own accompanist. He was nicknamed "Ukulele Ike" by a club owner, he got his first break in 1918 at the Arsonia Cafe in Chicago, where he performed a song called "Ja-Da", written by the club's pianist, Bob Carleton. Edwards and Carleton made it a hit on the vaudeville circuit. Vaudeville headliner Joe Frisco hired Edwards as part of his act, featured at the Palace in New York City - the most prestigious vaudeville theater - and in the Ziegfeld Follies.
Edwards made his first phonograph records in 1919. He recorded early examples of jazz scat singing in 1922; the following year he signed a contract with Pathé Records. He became one of the most popular singers of the 1920s, he recorded many of the pop and novelty hits of the day, including "California, Here I Come", "Hard Hearted Hannah", "Yes Sir, That's My Baby", "I'll See You in My Dreams". In 1924, Edwards performed as the headliner at the pinnacle of his vaudeville success; that year he featured in George and Ira Gershwin's first Broadway musical Lady Be Good, alongside Fred and Adele Astaire. As a recording artist, his hits included "Paddlin’ Madeleine Home", "I Can't Give You Anything but Love", the classic "Singin' in the Rain", which he introduced. Edwards's own compositions included " Losing You", "You're So Cute", "Little Somebody of Mine", "I Want to Call You'Sweet Mama'", he recorded a few "off-color" novelty songs for under-the-counter sales, including "I'm a Bear in a Lady's Boudoir" and "Give It to Mary with Love".
Edwards, more than any other performer, was responsible for the soaring popularity of the ukulele. Millions of ukuleles were sold during the decade, Tin Pan Alley publishers added ukulele chords to standard sheet music. Edwards always played American Martin ukuleles, favoring the small soprano model in his early career. In his years, he moved to the sweeter-sounding, large tenor ukulele more suitable for crooning, becoming popular in the 1930s. Edwards' continued to record until shortly before his death in 1971, his last record album, Ukulele Ike, was released posthumously on the independent Glendale label. He reprised many of his 1920s hits. In 1929, Cliff Edwards was playing at the Orpheum Theater in Los Angeles where he caught the attention of movie producer-director Irving Thalberg, his film company Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer hired Edwards to appear in early sound movies. After performing in some short films, Edwards was one of the stars in the feature Hollywood Revue of 1929, doing some comic bits and singing some numbers, including the film debut of his hit "Singin' in the Rain".
He appeared in a total of 33 films for MGM through 1933. He had a small role as Mike, playing a ukulele briefly at the beginning of the 1931 movie Laughing Sinners, starring Joan Crawford. Edwards had a friendly working relationship with MGM's comedy star Buster Keaton, who featured Edwards in three of his films. Keaton, himself a former vaudevillian, enjoyed singing and would harmonize with Edwards between takes. One of these casual jam sessions was captured on film, in Doughboys, in which Buster and Cliff scat-sing their way through "You Never Did That Before". Edwards was an occasional supporting player in feature films and short subjects at Warner Brothers and RKO Radio Pictures, he played a wisecracking sidekick to western star George O'Brien, filled in for Allen Jenkins as "Goldie" opposite Tom Conway in The Falcon Strikes Back. In a 1940 short, he led a cowboy chorus in His Buckaroos. Throughout the 1940s he appeared in a number of "B" westerns playing the comic, singing sidekick to the hero, seven times with Charles Starrett and six with Tim Holt.
Edwards appeared in the darkly sardonic western comedy The Bad Man of Brimstone, he played the character "Endicott" in the screwball comedy film His Girl Friday. In 1939, he voiced the off-screen wounded Confederate soldier in Gone with the Wind in a hospital scene with Vivien Leigh and Olivia de Havilland, his most famous voice role was as Jiminy Cricket in Walt Disney's Pinocchio. Edwards's rendition of "When You Wish Upon a Star" is his most familiar recorded legacy, he voiced the head crow in Disney's Dumbo and sang "When I See an Elephant Fly". In 1932, Edwards had his first national radio show on CBS Radio, he continued hosting network radio shows through 1946. In the early 1930s, Edwards' popularity faded as public taste shifted to crooners such as Russ Columbo, Rudy Vallee, Bing Crosby. Arthur Godfrey's use of the ukulele spurred a surge in its popularity and those that played it, including Edwards. Like many vaudeville stars, Edwards was an early arrival on television. In the 1949 season, he starred in The Cliff Edwards Show, a three-days-a-week (Monday, Wednesda
Prohibition in the United States
Prohibition in the United States was a nationwide constitutional ban on the production, importation and sale of alcoholic beverages from 1920 to 1933. During the nineteenth century, family violence, saloon-based political corruption prompted prohibitionists, led by pietistic Protestants, to end the alcoholic beverage trade to cure the ill society and weaken the political opposition. One result was that many communities in the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries introduced alcohol prohibition, with the subsequent enforcement in law becoming a hotly debated issue. Prohibition supporters, called "drys", presented it as a victory for public morals and health. Promoted by the "dry" crusaders, the movement was led by pietistic Protestants and social Progressives in the Prohibition and Republican parties, it gained a national grass roots base through the Woman's Christian Temperance Union. After 1900, it was coordinated by the Anti-Saloon League. Opposition from the beer industry mobilized "wet" supporters from the Catholic and German Lutheran communities.
They had funding to fight back, but by 1917–18 the German community had been marginalized by the nation's war against Germany, the brewing industry was shut down in state after state by the legislatures and nationwide under the Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution in 1920. Enabling legislation, known as the Volstead Act, set down the rules for enforcing the federal ban and defined the types of alcoholic beverages that were prohibited. For example, religious use of wine was allowed. Private ownership and consumption of alcohol were not made illegal under federal law, but local laws were stricter in many areas, with some states banning possession outright. Criminal gangs were able to gain control of the liquor supply for many cities. By the late-1920s a new opposition mobilized nationwide. Wets attacked prohibition as causing crime, lowering local revenues, imposing "rural" Protestant religious values on "urban" United States. Prohibition ended with the ratification of the Twenty-first Amendment, which repealed the Eighteenth Amendment on December 5, 1933.
Some states continued statewide prohibition. Research shows that prohibition reduced overall alcohol consumption by half during the 1920s, consumption remained below pre-Prohibition levels until the 1940s, suggesting that Prohibition did socialize a significant proportion of the population in temperate habits, at least temporarily. Rates of liver cirrhosis "fell by 50% early in Prohibition and recovered promptly after Repeal in 1933." Criticism remains that Prohibition led to unintended consequences such as a century of Prohibition-influenced legislation and the growth of urban crime organizations, though some scholars have argued that violent crime did not increase while others have argued that crime during the Prohibition era was properly attributed to increased urbanization, rather than the criminalization of alcohol use. As an experiment it lost supporters every year, lost tax revenue that governments needed when the Great Depression began in 1929. In the United States, once the battle against slavery was won, social moralists turned to other issues, such as Mormon polygamy and the temperance movement.
On November 18, 1918, prior to ratification of the Eighteenth Amendment, the U. S. Congress passed the temporary Wartime Prohibition Act, which banned the sale of alcoholic beverages having an alcohol content of greater than 1.28%. The Wartime Prohibition Act took effect June 30, 1919, with July 1, 1919 becoming known as the "Thirsty-First"; the U. S. Senate proposed the Eighteenth Amendment on December 18, 1917. Upon being approved by a 36th state on January 16, 1919, the amendment was ratified as a part of the Constitution. By the terms of the amendment, the country went dry one year on January 17, 1920. On October 28, 1919, Congress passed the Volstead Act, the popular name for the National Prohibition Act, over President Woodrow Wilson's veto; the act established the legal definition of intoxicating liquors as well as penalties for producing them. Although the Volstead Act prohibited the sale of alcohol, the federal government lacked resources to enforce it. Prohibition was successful in reducing the amount of liquor consumed, cirrhosis death rates, admissions to state mental hospitals for alcoholic psychosis, arrests for public drunkenness, rates of absenteeism.
While some allege that Prohibition stimulated the proliferation of rampant underground and widespread criminal activity, many academics maintain that there was no increase in crime during the Prohibition era and that such claims are "rooted in the impressionistic rather than the factual." By 1925, there were anywhere from 30,000 to 100,000 speakeasy clubs in New York City alone. Wet opposition talked of personal liberty, new tax revenues from legal beer and liquor, the scourge of organized crime. On March 22, 1933, President Franklin Roosevelt signed into law the Cullen–Harrison Act, legalizing beer with an alcohol content of 3.2% and wine of a low alcohol content. On December 5, 1933, ratification of the Twenty-first Amendment repealed the Eighteenth Amendment. However, United States federal law still prohibits the manufacture of distilled spirits without meeting numerous licensing requirements that make it impractical to produce spirits for personal beverage use. Consumption of alcoholic beverages has been a contentious topic in America since the colonial period.
In May 1657, the General Court of Massachusetts made the sale of strong li