TEX BENEKE + MEL POWELL
1914 Gordon Lee Beneke (February 12, 1914 - May 30, 2000, professionally known as Tex Beneke, was an American saxophonist, singer, and bandleader. His career is a history of associations with bandleader Glenn Miller and former musicians and singers who worked with Miller. He also solos on the recording the Glenn Miller Orchestra made of their popular song, "In The Mood" and sings on another popular Glenn Miller recording, "Chattanooga Choo Choo". Jazz critic Will Friedwald considers Beneke to be one of the major blues singers that sang with the big bands of the early 1940s.
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1923 Mel Powell (born Mel Epstein) (February 12, 1923 - April 24, 1998) was a jazz pianist and composer of classical music. Mel Epstein was born to Russian Jewish parents, Milton Epstein and Mildred Mark Epstein, and began playing piano as a child. He performed jazz professionally in New York City as a teenager. As early as 1939, he was working with Bobby Hackett, George Brunies, and Zutty Singleton. He changed his last name to Powell in 1940. In 1941-42 he played, composed, and arranged for Benny Goodman. A member of Glenn Miller's Army Air Force Band in 1943-45, he played with Django Reinhardt in Paris at war's end. Powell briefly returned to Goodman's band, then worked in Hollywood after World War II and married actress Martha Scott. In 1948 he played himself in the movie A Song Is Born as the jazz pianist working with Benny Goodman. In this movie he worked along with many other famous jazz players including Louis Armstrong.
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Birthday Spotlight: Nina Mae McKinney - Nina Mae McKinney Nina Mae McKinney (June 13, 1912 – May 3, 1967) was an American actress who worked internationally during the 1930s and in the postwar pe...