Born in New York City, he developed a liking for the stage, while still a child, which liking continued through his education at New York University, following which he got his Master's Degree in English Literature from Columbia Unviersity.
Ebb worked with Phillip Springer in the early 1960's. Springer recognized Ebb's lyrical talent and encouraged him to continue.
Among the songs that the team wrote were:
"How Little We Know"
"Santa Baby", a huge hit for Eartha Kitt.
"Nevertheless I Never Lost The Blues"
Ebb has said that Phillip taught him all he knows of prosody, form, AABA as opposed to Verse-Chorus, etc. Ebb says he never knew those things, he only had an instinct, but no technique.
In 1962, composer John Kander was working with the Goldman brothers, Bill and Jim. They worked on the show 'A Family Affair' that ran for 65 performances in New York before closing in Philadelphia.
1960 The Broadway Revue 'From A to Z' had some sketches by Ebb and composer
Paul Klein. The show closed after 21 performances.
1963 The Off-Broadway show 'Morning Sun', a tragedy in several respects.
In `1964, Tommy Valando got Ebb together with composer John Kander. The team would stay together for over 21 years. The Ebb and Kander team started off stongly with the song "My Coloring Book" which was a big success for singer Barbra Streisand.
1964 Kander and Ebb wrote the Musical 'Golden Gate'. It was never produced, but the score influenced producer Harold Prince (who knew Kander socially) to engage the team to score his new Broadway show 'Flora, the Red Menace', which (finally) starred Liza Minnelli. It opened in May, 1965. The show was a hit, and the Tony Committee awarded Minnelli a 'Best Actress' Award for her performance.
Hal Prince engaged the team to do the score for a musical version of 'I Am A Camera', which was to be produced under the name of 'Cabaret'.
1966 The Broadway Show 'Cabaret', ran for 1,166 performances. It won the 'Best Musical of 1967' Award, and Ebb and Kander won the
Best Score of the Season Award. Jill Haworth starred as Sally Bowles on the stage, and later
Liza Minnelli starred in the film production, winning an Best Actress Oscar Award for her portrayal of Sally.
"Maybe This Time"
"What Would You Do?"
"Perfectly Marvelous" (originally named "Roommates").
1968 The Broadway show 'The Happy Time' opened.
1968 The 'first' Broadway show 'Zorba, the Greek' opened. Herschel
Bernardi was the star. Later, Anthony Quinn starred as Zorba in the film
version. Zorba was revived on Broadway in 1981, with Quinn again as Zorba.
1971 The Broadway show '70, Girls, 70'
1975 The Broadway show 'Chicago', starred Gwen Verdon as the murderess Roxie Hart, and Chita Rivera as Velma, another murderess. A Musical.
1977 The Broadway show 'The Act'. 233 performances.
. Broadway show 'The Rink', starring Liza Minneli and Chita Rivera. Included such songs as:
"The Apple Doesn't Fall"
"Chief Cook and Bottle Washer"
"All The Children In a Row"
Broadway show 'Woman of the Year', starred Lauren Bacall.
b. Nov. 9, 1905, Hillsboro, TX d. 1970
Currently no information available.
Roger was working as piano accompanist for ballroom dance teams before he was called to Hollywood in 1933, where he wrote the special material for Ethel Merman's Paramount film releases. In 1935 he joined MGM, working as a musical director with occassional composing and arranging, - most notably for a series of Judy Garland films ("Dear Mr. Gable" for example). Sometime in the early 1940's, he became Arthur Freed's associated producer where he continued to score, arrange and compose for various films. Eventually, he won an Academy Award for his collaborations on such films as 'On The Town' (Comden and Green also contributed to this film); 'Annie Get Your Gun', and 'Easter Parade'.
He continued to produce many films into the 1950's. Among these films that he
1955 'Deep In the Heart Of Texas'
1956 'Funny Face'
1969 'Hello Dolly'
C Clara Edwards
Currently no information available.
Clara was essentially a pianist and composer of classical music. She was most active during the very late 1920's and 1930's. In the early 1940's, she made her (probably) only venture into the 'Pop' field. The tune was a national success.
"With The Wind And The Rain In Her Hair"
b. Aug. 18, 1887, Hohensalza, Germany d. Nov. 7, 1945 Los Angeles, CA.
nee: Gus Simon
Gus is remembered today not only as a songwriter, but as one of our greatest vaudevillians. Gus' life is, perhaps, the quintessential story of an entertainer's career. His family emigrated to the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn, NY when Gus was just 7 years old. During the day, he worked in the family cigar store, and in the evenings, he wandered looking for any sort of show business job. He found work as a singer at various lodge halls, on ferry boat lounges, in saloons, and even between bouts at the athletic clubs. He worked as a song plugger at Koster and Bial's; Tony Pastor's and the Bowery Theater. He would often sit in a balcony seat, and then stand and repeat a song that a star, such as Maggie Cline, or Lottie Gilson or Emma Carus, had just sung.
Gus was just 17 years old, in 1896, when James Hyde, a vaudeville agent, saw him performing in Johnny Palmer's Gaiety Saloon, in Brooklyn, NY. He booked a tour for Gus and four other boys as The Newsboys Quintet act. In 1898, while performing in this act, Gus wrote his first song, to a lyric by Tom Daly, "All I Want is My Black Baby Back". Gus couldn't write music at that time, so he hired Charles Previn to write down the notes. (May Irwin sang the song in her act, and helped to popularize it.)
While entertaining soldiers at Camp Black, during the Spanish-American War, Gus met lyricist Will Cobb, and they formed their "Words and Music", a partnership that lasted for many years.
Brief Chronology: ----------------- 1899 "The Singer and the Song" "I Couldn't Stand to See My Baby Lose" Some of their other hits were: "I'll Be With you When the Roses Bloom Again" "Way Down Younder in the Cornfield" "In Zanzibar", in Broadway musical 'The Medal and The Maid'. "Could You Be True to Eyes of Blue" "Goodbye, Little Girl, Goodbye" "If a Girl Like You Loved a Boy Like Me" 1900 "I Can't Tell WHy I Love YOu, But I Do" (revived 1944, film Belle of the Yukon) 1905 Gus wrote some tunes with lyricist, Vincent Bryan including; "In My Merry Oldsmobile" "He's My Pal", lyric Bryan. "Tammany", with lyric by Vincent Bryan. Later, the theme song for New York's Democratic Party political club (where the song was introduced after Gus had written it in one hour.) Also later, the song was interpolated into the Broadway show 'Fantana' where Lee Harrison sang it. 1905 Gus forms his own music publishing company. 1906 "I Just Can't Make My Eyes Behave", lyric by Will Cobb, and sung by Anna Held in Broadway show 'The Parisian Model'. 1907 "School Days", lyric by Will Cobb. Written for Gus' own vaudeville revue, 'School Boys and Girls'. (Gus wrote the act, directed it, and starred in it as well.) This act was so successful that it 'ran' for over twenty years. It consisted of a school room filled with young singers, dancers, actors, mimes, etc. Over the years, Gus scoured the country looking for new, young talent to star in these revues. He found such future stars as Lila Lee; Groucho Marx; Eddie Cantor; Eddie Buzzell; George Jessel; The Duncan Sister; George Price, and many more. He became known as "The Star Maker". A popular saying of the day was, 'Pull your kids in, here come Gus Edwards'. Of course, Gus also wrote the music for these 'School Days' revues. Among the many songs he wrote were: "Sunbonnet Sue", lyric by Will Cobb "If I Was a Millionaire", lyric Will Cobb. "By the Light of the Silvery Moon", Edward Madden's Lyric. "Jimmy Valentine", lyric by Edw. Madden. 1907 Gus wrote the score for Florenz Ziegfeld's first 'Follies' show. 1907 Gus wrote the score for the Weber and Fields show, Hip, Hip, Hooray. 1928 Gus went to Hollywood. He wrote some songs to words by Joe Goodwin. He appeared in some films including 'The Songwriter's Revue' and 'The Doll Shop', and also directed several short subjects. 1931 Gus went back into the vaudeville circuit and made some new discoveries, including the eccentric dancer, Ray Bolger, and the singing team of The Lane Sisters, Pricilla, Rosemary and Lola.Gus retired in 1939. In 1940, Paramount Pictures starred Bing Crosby in a film biograph of Gus' life, 'The Star Maker'. In poor health for the final six years of his life, Gus died in 1945, a truly great American entertainment legend.
Raymond S. Egan
b. 1890, Windsor, Ontario, Canada, d. 1952, Westport, Connecticut
Egan was most active in the 1920's and the 1930's. His three greatest lyrics were probably:
1920 "The Japanese Sandman"
1921 "Ain't We Got Fun?"
1925 "Sleepy Time Gal"
b. April 26, 1902, New York, N. Y., d. June 1988
Multi-talented Edward Eliscu is recalled today as a Playwright; producer; actor, and lyricist. He worked on Broadway and also in Hollywood. Just a few of his works include:
From Broadway show 'Great Day', music by Vincent Youmans, the songs: 1929 "Great Day" "More Than You Know", Co-lyricist was William Rose. "Without a Song", Co-lyricist was William Rose. And from the Hollywood film 'Flying Down To Rio', starring Delores Del Rio; Gene Raymond; Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, the songs: 1933 "Flying Down to Rio" "Carioca", launched the team of Astaire and Rogers. "Orchids in the Moonlight"
b. April 29, 1899, Washington, D.C., d. 1974, New York, N.Y.
Note: Since so much literature is extant on the 'Duke', no further information will be presented here. See the 'Duke Ellington Orch' listing in the American Bigbands Database.
Duke Ellington was one of America's musical giants: a composer, a bandleader, and an arranger. In 1918, Ellington formed his first small band, The Washingtonians', in Washington, D.C. It was the start of a highly successful career that lasted for over a half century. Along with all his recordings, his band also appeared in seven movies.
Duke Ellington is a member of the Songwriters' Hall of Fame.
Among his greatest hits, are found: 1931 "Mood Indigo" 1932 "It Don't Mean a Thing" 1933 "Sophisticated Lady" 1935 "Solitude" 1936 "In a Sentimental Mood" 1937 "Caravan" 1941 "I Got It Bad" 1942 "Don't Get Around Much Anymore" 1958 "Satin Doll"