Cover image for The unsung songwriters : America's masters of melody
Title:
The unsung songwriters : America's masters of melody
Author:
Vaché, Warren W., 1914-2005.
Publication Information:
Lanham, Md : Scarecrow Press, [2000]

©2000
Physical Description:
xxxi, 737 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm.
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780810835702
Format :
Book

Available:*

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ML390 .V114 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
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Summary

Summary

The Unsung Songwriters is dedicated to a period in the history of American music that author Warren Vaché calls the "Golden Age of Songwriting," and to the men and women who made it great. Contrary to the widely held opinion that most of our hit and standard songs were composed by a handful of top writers--Berlin, Gershwin, Kern, Porter, and Rodgers--the fact is that the vast majority of them were written by relatively unknown composers. In this definitive reference work to the "unsung songwriters," you will find Al Neiberg, the author of "It's the Talk of the Town," Maceo Pinkard, the mind behind "Sweet Georgia Brown" and "Sugar," Harry Woods for "Try a Little Tenderness," J. Fred Coots for "You Go to My Head," and many more.


Author Notes

The late Warren W. Vaché was a freelance writer and jazz musician. He was a co-founder and charter member of the New Jersey Jazz Society, the co-founder of the American Federation of Jazz Societies, and founder of the American Jazz Hall of Fame.


Reviews 2

Booklist Review

A tribute to the relatively unknown composers who were churning out songs for Broadway, Hollywood, radio, and early television during the "Golden Age of Songwriting," roughly 1917 to 1950.


Choice Review

Jazz bassist Vache is associated with three other works in this series, including Pee Wee Erwin: This Horn for Hire (CH, Mar'88) and Back Beats and Rim Shots (1997). The scope of Songwriters is much broader, covering popular music and standard genres (but not country or rock), focusing on US music, 1917-50. Although giants of the period are excluded (e.g., Berlin, the Gershwins), many unsung composers are familiar, sometimes as performers rather than writers (e.g., Count Basie, Sammy Cahn, Hoagy Carmichael, Mel Torme). Many song titles ring familiar, but not their creators (e.g., "Sweet Georgia Brown" by Maceo Pinkard). The entries (nearly 500, alphabetically arranged, one to three pages long) list popular songs within biographical sketches. Unhappily, discographies are not included, label and record numbers are rarely provided for the songs, and references to further sources of information are not supplied except in a very brief bibliography. The superfluous appendix includes "one hit wonders" and chronologies, while the essential index lists roughly 6,400 song titles but no name or subject entries. For the first half of the 20th century, this work is more extensive than Mark White's You Must Remember This (CH, Sep'85) or Nigel Harrison's Songwriters (CH, May'99) and is therefore a convenient snapshot of a wide range of pop music composers. General readers and undergraduates. R. A. Aken University of Kentucky


Table of Contents

Jack D. Stine
Forewordp. xxi
Prefacep. xxv
Why Some Songwriters Are Not Included in This Bookp. xxix
Acknowledgmentsp. xxxi
Abrams, Mauriep. 1
Adair, Tomp. 1
Adams, Stanleyp. 2
Adamson, Haroldp. 3
Adlam, Basil G. (Buzz)p. 3
Ager, Miltonp. 4
Ahlert, Fred E.p. 6
Akst, Harryp. 8
Allen, Stevep. 9
Alter, Louisp. 10
Altman, Arthurp. 11
Archer, Harryp. 12
Arlen, Haroldp. 13
Armstrong, LIL Hardinp. 15
Arnheim, Gusp. 15
Arshawsky, Arthur (See Artie Shaw)
Austin, Genep. 16
Baer, Abelp. 19
Barbour, Davep. 20
Barris, Harryp. 20
Basie, William (Count)p. 23
Baskette, Billyp. 24
Bauduc, Rayp. 24
Baxter, Philp. 25
Beiderbecke, Leon Bixp. 25
Benjamin, Benniep. 27
Bernard, Felixp. 27
Bernie, Benp. 28
Bernier, Buddyp. 29
Bibo, Irvingp. 30
Blake, Eubiep. 31
Blane, Ralphp. 31
Bloom, Rubep. 32
Boland, Clayp. 33
Bowman, Brooksp. 35
Brockman, Jamesp. 35
Brooks, Harryp. 36
Brooks, Sheltonp. 37
Brown, Lewp. 38
Brown, Nacio Herbp. 40
Bryan, Alfredp. 41
Buck, Genep. 42
Bullock, Walterp. 43
Burke, Joep. 43
Burke, Johnnyp. 44
Burtnett, Earlp. 46
Burton, Natp. 47
Burton, Valp. 47
Busse, Henryp. 48
Caesar, Irvingp. 49
Cahn, Sammyp. 50
Carey, William D.p. 51
Carle, Frankiep. 51
Carleton, Robert L. (Bob)p. 52
Carmichael, Hoagyp. 53
Carroll, Harryp. 56
Carter, Bennyp. 56
Cavanaugh, Jamesp. 58
Chaplin, Saulp. 59
Chase, Newellp. 61
Clare, Sidneyp. 61
Clarke, Grantp. 61
Cleary, Michael H.p. 62
Clifford, Gordonp. 63
Clinton, Larryp. 63
Cobb, George L.p. 64
Cobb, Will D.p. 64
Coburn, Richardp. 65
Cohan, George M.p. 65
Columbo, Russp. 66
Comden, Bettyp. 67
Confrey, Edward E. (Zez)p. 67
Conley, Larryp. 68
Connor, Joseph P. (Pierre Norman)p. 69
Conrad, Con (Conrad K. Dober)p. 70
Coots, J. Fredp. 71
Coslow, Samp. 72
Coward, Noelp. 73
Creamer, Henryp. 75
Curtis, Mann (See Manny Kurtz)
Daniels, Charles Neil (Neil Moret)p. 77
David, Halp. 78
David, Mackp. 79
Davis, Bennyp. 80
Delange, Eddiep. 83
Delugg, Miltonp. 84
Denniker, Paulp. 86
Dennis, Mattp. 86
Depaul, Genep. 87
Derose, Peterp. 88
Desylva, Buddyp. 89
Deutsch, Emeryp. 93
Dick, Dorothy (See Dorothy Dick Link)
Dietz, Howardp. 93
Dixon, Mortp. 94
Dober, Conrad K. (See Con Conrad)
Dolan, Robert Emmettp. 95
Donaldson, Walterp. 95
Dorsey, Jimmyp. 98
Dorsey, Tommyp. 99
Dougherty, Danp. 100
Dowell, Horace Kirby (Saxie)p. 101
Doyle, Walterp. 102
Drake, Miltonp. 103
Dresser, Paulp. 104
Dreyer, Davep. 104
Dubin, Alp. 106
Duke, Vernonp. 107
Edwards, Gusp. 111
Egan, Raymond B.p. 112
Eliscu, Edwardp. 114
Ellington, Dukep. 115
Ellington, Mercerp. 116
Elliott, John M. (Jack)p. 117
Ellis, Vivianp. 117
Emmerich, Bobp. 119
Erdman, Erniep. 120
Evans, Rayp. 121
Evans, Reddp. 121
Fain, Sammyp. 123
Fields, Arthurp. 124
Fields, Arthur B. (Buddy)p. 125
Fields, Dorothyp. 126
Fischer, Carl Theodorep. 128
Fisher, Dorisp. 129
Fisher, Fredp. 130
Fisher, Markp. 132
Franklin, Davep. 133
Freed, Arthurp. 134
Freed, Ralphp. 135
Friend, Cliffp. 136
Friml, Rudolfp. 137
Fulton, John Collins (Jack)p. 139
Gallop, Sammyp. 141
Gannon, James Kimball (Kim)p. 141
Gaskill, Clarencep. 143
Gensler, Lewis E.p. 144
George, Donp. 144
Gifford, Genep. 145
Gilbert, L. Wolfep. 146
Gillespie, Havenp. 147
Goering, Al (See Jack Pettis and Al Goering)
Golden, Johnp. 148
Goodhart, Alp. 148
Goodman, Bennyp. 150
Goodwin, Joep. 151
Gordon, Irvingp. 152
Gordon, Mackp. 153
Gorney, Jayp. 156
Gottler, Archiep. 157
Gray, Chaunceyp. 158
Gray, Jerryp. 159
Green, Budp. 160
Green, Johnnyp. 161
Greene, Mortp. 163
Greer, Jessep. 163
Grey, Cliffordp. 164
Grier, Jimmiep. 165
Grofe, Ferdep. 167
Gross, Walterp. 168
Grosz, Wilhelm (Hugh Williams)p. 168
Grouya, Theodore (Ted)p. 170
Gumm, Albert (See Albert Von Tilzer)
Gumm, Harold (See Harry Von Tilzer)
Haggart, Bobp. 171
Hamilton, George (Spike)p. 172
Hammerstein II, Oscarp. 173
Handman, Loup. 174
Handy, William Christopher (W.C.)p. 175
Hanighen, Berniep. 177
Hanley, James F.p. 178
Harbach, Ottop. 179
Harburg, E. Y. (Yip)p. 180
Harling, Frank W.p. 181
Harris, Charles K.p. 182
Hayes, Clarence Leonard (Clancy)p. 183
Hefti, Nealp. 184
Heindorf, Rayp. 185
Henderson, Charlesp. 186
Henderson, Fletcherp. 186
Henderson, Rayp. 187
Herbert, Victorp. 189
Herman, Woodrow (Woody)p. 190
Heyman, Edwardp. 191
Heyward, Dubosep. 193
Heywood, Eddie, Jr.p. 193
Hickman, Artp. 194
Hill, Alexp. 195
Hill, Billyp. 196
Hilliard, Bobp. 198
Himber, Richardp. 199
Hines, Earlp. 200
Hirsch, Louis A.p. 202
Hirsch, Walterp. 203
Hodges, Johnnyp. 203
Hoffman, Alp. 204
Holiner, Mannp. 207
Hollander, Fredp. 208
Hopkins, Claudep. 209
Hoschna, Karlp. 210
Howard, Eddyp. 210
Howard, Joep. 211
Hubbell, Raymondp. 212
Hudson, Willp. 213
Hupfeld, Hermanp. 214
Ingraham, Royp. 217
Jaffe, Moep. 219
Jason, Willp. 220
Jenkins, Gordonp. 220
Jerome, M. K.p. 221
Jerome, Williamp. 222
Johnson, Howard E.p. 223
Johnson, J. C. (Jimmy)p. 223
Johnson, James P.p. 225
Johnston, Arthurp. 226
Jolson, Alp. 227
Jones, Ishamp. 228
Jurgens, Dickp. 230
Kahal, Irvingp. 233
Kahn, Gusp. 233
Kalmar and Ruby (See Bert Kalmar)
Kalmar, Bertp. 236
Kaper, Bronislawp. 237
Kassel, Artp. 238
Kendis, Jamesp. 239
Kenny, Charlesp. 240
Kenny, Nickp. 240
Kent, Walterp. 241
King, Jackp. 242
King, Waynep. 243
Klages, Raymondp. 244
Klenner, Johnp. 246
Kluczko, Johnny (Johnny Watson)p. 247
Koehler, Tedp. 247
Kramer, Alex Charlesp. 250
Kramer, Zoe Parenteau (Joan Whitney)p. 251
Kurtz, Emanuel (Manny) (Mann Curtis)p. 252
Lane, Burtonp. 253
Latouche, Johnp. 254
Lawnhurst, Veep. 255
Lawrence, Jackp. 256
Layton, Turnerp. 257
Lee, Peggyp. 257
Leigh, Carolyn Paulap. 258
Lerner, Alan Jayp. 259
Lerner, Samuel Manuel (Sammy)p. 259
Leslie, Edgarp. 261
Levant, Oscarp. 262
Levinson, Jerry (See Jerry Livingston)
Lewis, Alp. 263
Lewis, Sam M.p. 265
Link, Dorothy (Dorothy Dick)p. 266
Link, Harryp. 267
Little, Jack (Little Jack)p. 268
Livingston, Fudp. 269
Livingston, Jayp. 270
Livingston, Jerryp. 272
Loeb, John Jacobp. 274
Loesser, Frankp. 275
Loewe, Frederickp. 279
Lombardo, Carmenp. 280
Lowe, Ruthp. 281
Lown, Bertp. 281
Lyman, Abep. 282
Macdonald, Ballardp. 285
Mack, Cecilp. 286
Madden, Edwardp. 287
Magidson, Herbp. 288
Malneck, Mattyp. 290
Maltin, Bernardp. 293
Mancini, Henryp. 294
Mandel, Johnnyp. 294
Mann, Davidp. 295
Mann, Paulp. 296
Marcus, Solp. 297
Mares, Paulp. 299
Marion, George, Jr.p. 300
Marks, Geraldp. 301
Marks, Johnnyp. 303
Martin, Hughp. 303
Mccarthy, Josephp. 304
Mchugh, Jimmyp. 306
Mcrae, Theodore (Teddy)p. 308
Melrose, Walterp. 309
Mencher, Murray (Ted Murray)p. 309
Mendoza, Peter Hygham (Peter Venning)p. 310
Mercer, Johnnyp. 315
Mertz, Paul Madeirap. 317
Meskill, Jackp. 317
Meyer, George W.p. 319
Meyer, Josephp. 322
Mills, Irvingp. 325
Mitchell, Sidney D.p. 326
Mizzy, Vicp. 328
Moll, Billyp. 328
Monaco, James V.p. 329
Moret, Neil (See Charles Neil Daniels)
Morgan, Russp. 332
Morton, Ferdinand (Jelly Roll)p. 333
Mundy, James (Jimmy)p. 334
Murray, Jack (John)p. 335
Murray, Ted (See Murray Mencher)
Myers, Richardp. 336
Myrow, Josefp. 336
Mysels, Sammyp. 338
Naset, Clayton E.p. 341
Nash, Ogdenp. 341
Neiburg, Al J. (Allen)p. 342
Nelson, Ed G.p. 343
Nemo, Henryp. 344
Newman, Charlesp. 345
Nichols, Albertap. 348
Noble, Johnny (John Avery)p. 349
Noble, Rayp. 349
Norman, Pierre (See Joseph P. Connor)
Norton, George A.p. 353
Oakland, Benp. 355
O'Flynn, Charlesp. 356
Oliver, Joseph (King)p. 357
Oppenheim, Davep. 358
Original Dixieland Jazz Bandp. 359
Osborne, Willp. 360
Owen, Harry (Robert)p. 361
Palmer, Jackp. 363
Parish, Mitchellp. 365
Perkins, Frankp. 366
Perkins, Rayp. 367
Petkere, Bernicep. 368
Pettis, Jack, and Goering, Alp. 369
Phillips, Sidp. 374
Piantadosi, Alp. 375
Pinkard, Maceop. 375
Pollack, Lewp. 377
Posford, Georgep. 379
Powell, Teddyp. 380
Quadling, Lewp. 383
Rainger, Ralphp. 385
Raye, Don (Donald McCrae Wilhoite)p. 387
Razaf, Andyp. 389
Redman, Donp. 391
Reichner, Bickley (Bix)p. 393
Rene, Leon T., and Rene, Otis J., Jr.p. 394
Revel, Harryp. 395
Rich, Maxp. 397
Richman, Harryp. 399
Ringle, Davep. 400
Roberts, Allanp. 401
Roberts, Luckeyth (Lucky)p. 402
Robertson, Dickp. 402
Robin, Leop. 403
Robinson, J. Russelp. 407
Robison, Willardp. 409
Rogers, Dickp. 414
Romberg, Sigmundp. 415
Rose, Billyp. 416
Rose, Fredp. 418
Rose, Vincentp. 419
Ruby, Harryp. 420
Ruby, Hermanp. 422
Russell, Charles Ellsworth (Pee Wee)p. 423
Russell, Luisp. 424
Russell, Sidney Keith (Bob)p. 425
Sampson, Edgarp. 429
Samuels, Walterp. 430
Sanders, Joep. 431
Santly Brothers (Henry, Joseph H., Lester)p. 432
Savitt, Janp. 433
Schertzinger, Victorp. 434
Schoebel, Elmerp. 435
Schuster, Irap. 436
Schwartz, Arthurp. 437
Schwartz, Jeanp. 440
Scott, Johnnie Newhallp. 442
Scott, Raymond (Harry Warnow)p. 442
Seiler, Eddiep. 443
Seymour, Totp. 444
Shafer, Bobp. 446
Shand, Terryp. 446
Shannon, James Roycep. 447
Shapiro, Tedp. 448
Shaw, Artie (Arthur Arshawsky)p. 449
Shay, Larryp. 450
Sherman, Alp. 451
Sherwin, Manningp. 453
Shields, Renp. 454
Shilkret, Natp. 455
Sigler, Mauricep. 456
Sigman, Carl (Jessie Barnes, Craig Lee, Lee Burke)p. 457
Signorelli, Frankp. 459
Silver, Abnerp. 461
Simon, Natp. 461
Simons, Seymour R.p. 462
Singer, Louis C.p. 463
Sissle, Noblep. 464
Skylar, Sunny (Selig, Sidney, Shaftel)p. 465
Smith, Chrisp. 466
Smith, Ezekial L. G. (See Stuff Smith)
Smith, Harry Bachep. 466
Smith, Richard B. (Dick)p. 468
Smith, Stuff (Ezekial Leroy Gordon Smith)p. 468
Snyder, Tedp. 469
Spina, Haroldp. 470
Stamper, Davidp. 472
Stept, Sam H.p. 472
Sterling, Andrew B.p. 473
Stern, Jackp. 475
Stitzel, Melp. 475
Stock, Larryp. 476
Stordahl, Axelp. 477
Stothart, Herbertp. 478
Strayhorn, Billyp. 480
Stride, Harryp. 481
Styne, Julep. 481
Suesse, Danap. 485
Swan, Einar Aaronp. 486
Swanstrom, Arthurp. 487
Swift, Kayp. 488
Symes, Martyp. 489
Tauber, Dorisp. 491
Thompson, Harlanp. 491
Tierney, Harry Austinp. 492
Tinturin, Peterp. 493
Tizol, Juanp. 495
Tobias, Charlesp. 495
Tobias, Harryp. 497
Tobias, Henryp. 499
Todd, Clarence E.p. 499
Tomlin, Truman (Pinky)p. 500
Torme, Melp. 501
Tracey, William G.p. 502
Trent, Jop. 502
Turk, Royp. 503
Vallee, Rudyp. 507
Van Alstyne, Egbertp. 508
Van Heusen, Jimmyp. 509
Venning, Peter (See Peter Hygham Mendoza)
Venuti, Joep. 511
Verges, Joep. 511
Vincent, Natp. 512
Von Tilzer, Albert (Albert Gumm)p. 513
Von Tilzer, Harry (Harold Gumm)p. 515
Wagner, Larryp. 517
Wallace, Oliverp. 517
Waller, Thomas (Fats)p. 518
Ward, Charles B.p. 521
Warnow, Harry (See Raymond Scott)
Warren, Harryp. 521
Washburne, Joe (Country)p. 523
Washington, Nedp. 524
Watson, Johnny (See Johnny Kluczko)
Watts, Gradyp. 526
Wayne, Mabelp. 527
Webster, Paul Francisp. 529
Weill, Kurtp. 531
Weldon, Frankp. 533
Wendling, Petep. 534
Wenrich, Percyp. 535
West, Eugenep. 536
Weston, Paul (Paul Wetstein)p. 537
Wetstein, Paul (See Paul Weston)
Wever, Nedp. 538
Whitcup, Leonardp. 539
Whiting, Georgep. 540
Whiting, Richardp. 541
Whitney, Joan (See Zoe Parenteau Kramer)
Wilder, Alecp. 543
Wilhoite, Donald Mccrae (See Don Raye)
Williams, Clarencep. 544
Williams, Harryp. 545
Williams, Hugh (See Wilhelm Grosz)
Williams, Mary Loup. 547
Williams, Spencerp. 548
Willson, Meredithp. 549
Wodehouse, P. G. (Pelham Grenville Wodehouse)p. 550
Woods, Harryp. 551
Wrubel, Alliep. 559
Yellen, Jackp. 561
Youmans, Vincentp. 563
Young, Joep. 565
Young, Victorp. 569
Zaret, Hyp. 573
Bibliographyp. 575
Appendixp. 577
Song Title Indexp. 651
About the Authorp. 737