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Pessoa singular

Davis, Sammy, Jr., 1925-1990

  • LC80040663
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1925-12-08 - 1990-05-16

Sammy Davis Jr. was an American actor, singer, and dancer. He also had several comedic routines and was noted for his impressions of other celebrities. Born to and raised by vaudevillian parents, Davis learned to act, sing, and dance at a young age. He toured with his father for much of his childhood and performed as part of the Will Mastin Trio until World War II. During the war he belonged to an integrated entertainment unit. After the war he returned to performing with the Will Mastin Trio, and recorded blues albums for Capitol. In 1954 he performed the title song for the film "Six Bridges to Cross"; two years later he starred in the Broadway musical "Mr. Wonderful."
In 1959 Davis became a part of Frank Sinatra's "Rat Pack" and appeared in several movies as part of the group, such as 1960's "Ocean's 11". They performed regularly together in Las Vegas, where Davis had to deal with the effects of continued segregation. He continued to act and record through the 1960s and '70s.
Davis was in a car accident in 1954 in which he lost his left eye. He wore a glass eye for the rest of his life. He also converted to Judaism in 1961. Davis died from throat cancer at the age of 64.

Haymes, Dick

  • LC91036885
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1918-09-13

O'Day, Anita

  • LC81013286
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1919-10-18

Basie, Count, 1904-1984

  • LC81016968
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1904-08-21 - 1984-04-26

William James "Count" Basie is one of America's best-known jazz musicians. He was a pianist, bandleader, and composer. As a teenager and young adult in the 1920s, Basie met and performed with a variety of recognized names in Harlem: Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, and Fats Waller, among others. In 1929 he joined up with Bennie Moten in Kansas City, acting as both pianist and co-arranger for the band. When Moten died in 1936, Basie formed his own band, largely from its former members. It was this core group that ended up improvising their way into one of Basie's early hits, "One O'Clock Jump," and brought them to the attention of record producers.
After an extended engagement in Chicago that allowed "Count Basie and His Barons of Rhythm" to refine their sound, Basie moved the band back to Harlem. They played at the Woodside Hotel, the Roseland Ballroom, and eventually the Savoy. Although Basie hired arrangers for the band, the group often worked out their numbers in rehearsals and then performed the partially improvised pieces from memory. In 1939, the band did a cross-country tour and performed on the West Coast for the first time. Although World War II caused a lot of member turnover, Basie remained famous for keeping an enthusiastic band that played with infectious good cheer and featured a continuous string of talented jazz instrumentalists and singers. However, declining interest in swing and traditional big band sound led him to disband the group after the war ended.
But Basie continued to perform with other groups, and in 1952 he ended up reforming his group with new members, working strains of bebop, rhythm and blues, and early rock'n'roll into his arrangements and working as a more organized ensemble than he had previously. In 1958, Basie headed to Europe with the new band. Post-war Europe loved jazz and had already welcomed a number of American expatriates who were happy to perform with Basie's band. The 1960s were filled with tours, television appearances, and recording with the likes of Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, and Tony Bennett. Basie maintained the classic big band sound into the 1980s despite music trends and more changes in personnel. He died from pancreatic cancer at the age of 79. The band, led by former members, continues to record and perform today.

Perito, Nick

  • LC93076272
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1924-04-07 - 2005-08-03

Nick Perito was an American composer, arranger, and band leader, and for 40 years the closest collaborator of singer Perry Como. Perito was nominated for a dozen Emmys, primarily for Como specials and televised presentations of the Kennedy Center Honors in the 1980s and early '90s. Perito joined Como in 1963 as the singer's long-running "The Perry Como Show" was ending, and stayed on as his music director and conductor for frequent television specials, tours and recording sessions. Perito also handled the music for television specials for Andy Williams, Bing Crosby, and Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme. He played piano in recording sessions for Steve & Eydie and for Julius La Rosa, among others. For the big screen, Perito scored the 1968 comedy "Don't Just Stand There," starring Robert Wagner and Mary Tyler Moore.

He began playing the accordion at a young age and soon started performing at parties. He received a scholarship to the Lamont School of Music, studying at the University of Denver. Perito was drafted in 1943 and served as an Army medic in New York during World War II; he also played piano and did musical arrangements for the Army band. Perito remained in New York after World War II, entering the Juilliard School of Music and graduating from the college in 1949.

Perito returned to Denver in 1946 and worked at Denver's KOA with his own weekday radio program. After that, he went back to New York, where he worked as a songwriter, arranger, and accordion/piano session musician. Perito also had his own band that had a permanent spot at Jack Dempsey's Broadway Restaurant, owned by the boxer. His first association with Perry Como came through Como's arranger, Ray Charles, in the early 1950s. Como had recorded a novelty song, "Hoop-De-Doo", and Perito was hired to accompany him on accordion for television performances of the song. He also became the musical director of United Artists Records in 1961.
Perito's other credits include the Kennedy Center Honors, American Film Institute awards, The Don Knotts Variety Show, and the Andy Williams and Bing Crosby television specials. Perito wrote the music for the 1968 film, Don't Just Stand There! with Robert Wagner and Mary Tyler Moore. Perito was also an influential arranger of background music for Muzak in the late 1960s and early 70s. He became the musical director for Bob Hope in 1993 and worked with Hope's wife, Dolores, when she decided to pick up her singing career after 60 years. Perito, along with musicians Dick Grove and Allyn Ferguson, was a founder and partner of the Grove School of Music in Van Nuys, California; the school was accredited in 1979 but closed in 1991. His work earned Perito a dozen Emmy nominations a year before his death of pulmonary fibrosis at the age of 81 on August 3, 2005 in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, CA.

Feinstein, Michael

  • LC88626481
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1956-09-07 -

Michael Jay Feinstein (born September 7, 1956) is an American singer, pianist, and music revivalist. He is an interpreter of, and an anthropologist and archivist for, the repertoire known as the Great American Songbook. He currently serves as Artistic Director for The Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel, Indiana.
Feinstein was born and raised in Columbus, OH, where he started playing the piano by ear at age 5. He worked in local piano bars after graduating from high school and moved to LA when he was 20, where he was introduced to Ira Gershwin in July 1977. Feinstein became Gershwin’s assistant for six years; this assignment led to six years of researching, cataloguing and preserving the unpublished sheet music and rare recordings in Gershwin's home which earned him access to numerous unpublished Gershwin songs, many of which he has since performed and recorded.
By the mid-1980s, Feinstein was a nationally known cabaret singer-pianist famed for being a dedicated proponent of the Great American Songbook. In 1986, he recorded his first CD, Pure Gershwin (1987), a collection of music by George and Ira Gershwin. He followed this in quick succession with Live at the Algonquin (1986); Remember: Michael Feinstein Sings Irving Berlin (1987); Isn't It Romantic (1988), a collection of standards and his first album backed by an orchestra; and Over There (1989), featuring the music of America and Europe during the First World War.
By 1988, Feinstein was starring on Broadway in a series of in-concert shows and in the early 1990s, Feinstein embarked on an ambitious songbook project wherein he performed an album featuring the music of a featured composer, often accompanied by the composer; he proceeded to release a number of albums on several labels through 1989. In 1999, Feinstein lent his name to a new nightclub in New York located in the Regency Hotel, as Feinstein's at the Regency became a venue for sophisticated cabaret entertainers including its namesake. In the late 1990s, Feinstein recorded two more albums of Gershwin music: Nice Work If You Can Get It: Songs by the Gershwins (1996) and Michael & George: Feinstein Sings Gershwin (1998).
In 2000, the Library of Congress appointed Feinstein to its newly formed National Recording Preservation Board, an organization dedicated to safeguarding America's musical heritage. Feinstein earned his fifth Grammy Award nomination in 2009 for The Sinatra Project, his CD celebrating the music of “Ol’ Blue Eyes.” His Emmy Award-nominated TV special Michael Feinstein – The Sinatra Legacy, which was taped live at the Palladium in Carmel, IN, aired across the country in 2011. Feinstein was named Principal Pops Conductor for the Pasadena Symphony in 2012 and made his conducting debut in June 2013 to celebrated critical acclaim. He launched an additional Pops series at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts in Palm Beach, Florida in 2014. Feinstein's memoir The Gershwins and Me: A Personal History in Twelve Songs about working for Ira Gershwin was published in the fall of 2012, accompanied by a CD of Feinstein performing the Gershwin brothers' music discussed in the book. Feinstein opened his new nightclub, Feinstein's at the Nikko in San Francisco's Nikko Hotel in May 2013, Feinstein's/54 Below at New York's Studio 54 in 2015 and also plans for a future nightclub in London.

Madrick, Stephen A.

  • SF2018SMRK
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1910-08-03 - 1995-12-17

Sautter, Margaret Ann

  • SF2018MSRK
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1924-04-04 - 2009-12-27

Margaret taught for 35 years in the Detroit Public School System and was considered an excellent and dedicated teacher. In addition to giving her very best to her students, parents and colleagues, nothing gave her more pleasure than providing others with entertainment and happy memories through singing, skits and plays. She belonged to First Bethany United Church of Christ and was active in the choir and other church activities. She was also a lifetime member of Wayne State University Alumni Association and Alpha Sigma Alpha sorority, and a regular contributor to many worthwhile charities. After retiring from teaching, she moved to California in 1985 to take care of her brother, Morey, Jr.

Helford, Irwin

  • SF2018IHRK
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1934 -

Helford served as the Chairman of the Board of the Great American Songbook Foundation from 2007 - 2012.

Goodelle, Niela

  • SF2018NGRK
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1910-09-08 - 1988-05-26

Niela Goodelle Hartz (September 8, 1910 – May 26, 1988) was born Helen Goodelle in New York. In the 1920s, she worked as an accompanist for Burton Thatcher in exchange for vocal lessons. By the 1930s she was a Hollywood starlet, performing in various shows and movies with the likes of Buddy Rogers. She is perhaps most famous for turning down a marriage proposal from Rudy Vallee in 1937.
In 1940, Goodelle retired at what was arguably the peak of her career and married Minton Hartz. She moved to Evansville, Indiana where she and Minton raised three children.

Hope, Bob

  • LC50028460
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1903-05-29 - 2003-07-27

Arlen, Harold, 1905 - 1986

  • LC82155108
  • Pessoa singular
  • 1905-02-15 - 1986-04-23

Harold Arlen was an American composer, arranger, pianist, and vocalist who is considered one of the greatest composers of the 20th century. He wrote over 400 songs but is most famous for composing the songs for the classic 1939 film The Wizard of Oz, particularly “Over the Rainbow,” which was voted the 20th century’s No. 1 song. Arlen wrote some of the greatest hits from the 1930’s and 40’s, such as “Get Happy,” “Stormy Weather,” “It's Only a Paper Moon,” “I've Got the World on a String,” and “Last Night When We Were Young.” He was most prolific from 1929 through the 1950s.
He was born as Hyman Arluck in Buffalo, New York in 1905 to Jewish parents. The son of a Jewish cantor (a trained song-leader for Jewish services) and pianist, Arlen showed exceptional musical talent in childhood. Hyman loved to sing, but was extremely shy. His mother hoped that he would become a music teacher, so she introduced a piano into the Arluck home. Hyman began studying around the age of nine and quickly outgrew the neighborhood piano teacher. He went on to study with the leading local teacher, who was also a conductor, organist and composer. Before long, Hyman left school as a teenager and achieved some local success working as a vocalist and pianist in different bands. He moved to New York City in the 1920s, where he worked as an accompanist in vaudeville and changed his name to Harold Arlen. Arlen composed several songs during that period, but published the first of his many well-known pieces in 1929, "Get Happy", with lyrics by Ted Koehler. "Get Happy” attracted attention to the new songwriting-lyricist duo identifying Arlen and Koehler as hit writers. With “Get Happy” and other rhythmic songs to their credit, the team developed the reputation as writers of "bluesy" rhythm numbers, which were much in demand in the flourishing cabarets. Throughout the early and mid-1930s, Arlen and Koehler produced songs for Harlem’s infamous Cotton Club, which was at the heart of the cabaret scene, as well as for Broadway musicals and Hollywood films, creating familiar pieces such as "Stormy Weather" and "Let's Fall in Love."
In the mid-1930s, Arlen married, and spent increasing time in California, writing for movie musicals. It was at this time that he began working with lyricist E.Y. "Yip" Harburg. In 1938, the team was hired by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer to compose songs for The Wizard of Oz, the most famous of which is "Over the Rainbow", which went on to win the Academy Award for Best Music, Original Song. They also wrote "Down with Love" (featured in the 1937 Broadway show Hooray for What!), "Lydia the Tattooed Lady", for Groucho Marx in At the Circus (1939), and "Happiness is a Thing Called Joe", for Ethel Waters in Cabin in the Sky (1943). Going into the 1940s, Arlen teamed up with Johnny Mercer to write a string of successful hits: "That Old Black Magic" (1942), "Accentuate the Positive" (1944), and "Come Rain or Come Shine" (1945), among others. From that point on he worked on various Broadway shows but became more reclusive as an illness in 1954 and the deaths of his parents in 1953 (his father) and 1958 (his mother), and later his wife (1970) caused him to lose interest in composing and music in general.
Arlen died of cancer at the age of 81.

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