GLIMPSES OF MISS WILEY and COLLEAGUES (1934-1953)

A small pleasure. seen on eBay.

Here’s what it sounds like:

The facts are: Lee Wiley, vocal; Sterling Bose, Tommy Dorsey, Sid Stoneburn, others; Ernie White, Larry Gomar,  Justin Ring or Victor Young, directing. New York, August 13, 1934 38298-B.

And nearly twenty years later:

Lee’s voice had changed, predictably, as had the band, but I like the new, tougher approach just as much.

We enter the magical world of sheet music covers.  This song is familiar, with the distinct connection to Victor Young — with whom Lee enjoyed a long relationship.  I reprint the cover for comparison:

Although I can’t offer a recording of Lee singing LOVE ME, how about two versions by Jack Teagarden — the first with ornamentation by Sterling Bose, Jimmy Dorsey, Perry Botkin — again directed by Victor Young?  I knew you wouldn’t object:

This is, again, twenty years later, swinging as well as romantic — from the sextet that Jack led after he’d left Louis Armstrong’s All-Stars.  This 1953 band was a family affair, with brother Charlie on trumpet, sister Norma on piano:

Back to Lee.

This piece of sheet music is new to me, and I haven’t found any recordings of the song to offer you:

This song is known to me because Red Allen recorded it at the time, but no recording of Lee singing it exists.  Still, it’s pleasant to hear her voice in one’s mental recording studio:

and, in case you’ve never seen it, here is the justly famous film — silent but with a soundtrack added later, both thanks to Josh Rushton — of Lee and then-husband Jess Stacy, out and about.

May your happiness increase!

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3 responses to “GLIMPSES OF MISS WILEY and COLLEAGUES (1934-1953)

  1. It is my hope that someone will soon write a scholarly biography of Lee Wiley. I also hope that the person who eventually does that will explore the dynamic that existed between Ms. Wiley, as a very strong woman, and the world in which she lived and worked. That world of course, was the world of popular entertainment in general, and jazz in particular. Both were dominated by men, and suffused with attitudes that today would be regarded as sexist and discriminatory. How she dealt with all of that will make a great story.

    Michael P. Zirpolo
    Swingandbeyond.com

  2. Great juxtaposition of versions of the same songs 20 years apart. This is something I always find interesting and educational…especially when both versions are excellent (how could they not be considering the musicians!).

  3. Don "Zoot" Conner

    Nice to hear these two versions of “Careless Love” by Lee. I have most of her sides in the stacks. She’s always been one of my favorite song birds(Canaries). She led quite a controversial life, Jess Stacy would concur:thanks for the posts, Michael.

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