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Tuesday, 3 January 2017

Fred Rich born 3 January 1898

Frederic Efrem "Fred" Rich (January 31, 1898 – September 8, 1956) was a Polish-born American bandleader and composer who was active from the 1920s to the 1950s. Among the famous musicians in his band were the Dorsey Brothers, Joe Venuti, Bunny Berigan and Benny Goodman. In the early 1930s, Elmer Feldkampwas one of his vocalists.
Pianist, band leader and composer, Fred Rich was born in Warsaw, Poland. He formed his own band in the 1920s and made his reputation in the recording studios and on radio. His theme songs were “I’m Always Chasing Rainbows” and “So Beats My Heart For You.” Between 1925-1928, he toured Europe and had the singular distinction of being the first orchestra of its kind to appear in a Royal Command Performance, before King George V (in 1928).
He served as musical director for the CBS network from 1928 to 1938. He also led several successful dance bands, his first in New York (resident at the Astor Hotel) between 1922 and 1928.
Like many prolific leaders of bands and studio groups, most of Rich's records are typical ordinary dance fare of the era. However, during the period between November 1929 and March 1931, there was a scattering of outstanding hot jazz versions of popular tunes, with notable solos by Bunny Berigan, Tommy Dorsey, Jimmy Dorsey, Joe Venuti, Eddie Lang, and others. These celebrated recordings from 1930  include: A Peach Of A Pair; I Got Rhythm; Cheerful Little Earful; and I'm Tickled Pink With A Blue-Eyed Baby. (November 19, 1930.)

 He recorded for Okeh, Columbia, Paramount, Camden and Vocalion and several others, often recording under the names of Fred Richards, Chester Leighton’s Sophomores, Frank Auburn, Lloyd Keating & His Music, alsomany more. As "Freddie Rich," he recorded dozens of popular-title piano rolls in the 1920s for the Aeolian Company, both for its reproducing Duo-Art system and its 88 note Mel-O-Dee label.
In the late 1930s, he became a musical director for various radio stations and under various names, the Freddie Rich organisation remained on the scene until 1942, when he moved onto a staff position with United Artists Studios in Hollywood, where he was to remain for most of his career. Rich's band played for several network radio programs, including The Abbott and Costello Show.
In 1943, Rich joined ASCAP, moved to the West Coast and settled down in Beverly Hills. He now concentrated on working in Hollywood as musical director and composer of incidental music and the occasional film score, sometimes billing himself as
'Frederic Efrem Rich'. His compositions include three symphonies and such popular songs as "Penthouse", "Donn-Ama", "Blue Tahitian Moonlight", "On the Riviera" and "Time Will Tell".
Rich suffered a serious setback after a fall in 1945, which left him partially paralysed. While this curtailed his work in Hollywood, he remained active as a conductor of studio orchestras until the early 1950's. Rich died at his home in Beverly Hills in September 1956, aged 58 after a long illness.
(Info edited from Wikipedia & IMDb bio by I.S. Mowis)

Here's a big band short of the 1930's with Bunny Berigan in the trumpet section and Jimmy Dorsey in the reed section.


boppinbob said...

For “The Fred Rich (AKA Freddie Rich) Collection” (105 mp3’s) go here:

Pudge said...

Thanks Bob. As always, enlightening commentary.