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Deane L. Root

(b Brooklyn, NY, Feb 15, 1893; d Santa Monica, CA, July 15, 1947). American songwriter, lyricist and publisher. He was a pianist and song plugger in Tin Pan Alley before World War I and then became a staff composer for Irving Berlin’s publishing company. His first successful song was ...

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(b Terre Haute, IN, April 22, 1858; d New York, Jan 30, 1906). American songwriter, lyricist, publisher and performer. He was the brother of the novelist Theodore Dreiser. He learned the guitar and piano, and at the age of 16 joined a travelling show, adopting the pseudonym Dresser. From ...

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(b Cologne, Germany, Sept 30, 1875; d New York, Jan 14, 1942). American composer, lyricist and publisher. His parents, Max and Theodora Breitenbach, were Americans. He ran away from home at the age of 13, enlisting in the German navy and in the French Foreign Legion before coming to the USA in ...

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John Snelson

(b Wakefield, July 15, 1898; d London, March 4, 1954). English composer, lyricist and publisher. He became the honorary deputy organist at Wakefield Cathedral at the age of 12, then won a scholarship to the RCM at 15, studying with Sir Frederick Bridge and Sir Walter Parrott. After brief service in World War I he took a degree in music at Christ’s College, Cambridge; while there he began to compose popular songs, and subsequently Charlot commissioned him to write for his ...

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(b New York, July 12, 1895; d Doylestown, PA, Aug 23, 1960). American lyricist, librettist, producer and publisher. Born into a notable theatrical family, his grandfather and namesake was the flamboyant opera impresario Oscar Hammerstein (1847–1919), who created and lost a handful of opera houses and companies around the turn of the century. Oscar studied law at Columbia where he became involved in the Varsity shows and, after graduation, continued to write songs. By ...

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Edward A. Berlin

(b Jacksonville, FL, June 17, 1871; d Wiscasset, ME, June 26, 1938). American lyricist, poet, novelist, anthologist, civil rights leader, and international diplomat. He began his professional life as an educator and lawyer in Florida (one of the early African Americans admitted to the Florida Bar), but in the summer of ...

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Geoffrey Block

(b New York, June 29, 1910; d New York, July 28, 1969). American lyricist, composer, librettist and publisher. The son of a noted piano teacher and the half brother of Arthur Loesser (1894–1969), concert pianist, author, and for many years professor of piano at the Cleveland Institute, Frank grew up in a musical home that disdained popular culture. He enrolled at the City College of New York at the age of 15, but failed nearly every subject. After his father died unexpectedly in ...

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Deane L. Root

(b Boston, July 10, 1894; d Beverly Hills, CA, May 23, 1969). American songwriter, pianist and music publisher. He learnt the piano from his mother, and in 1915 became a rehearsal pianist for the Boston Opera. From 1916 he was a song-plugger in Boston for Irving Berlin Music and from ...

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Ferenc Bónis

(b Budapest, July 2, 1880; d New York, Jan 15, 1967). American composer and publisher of Hungarian origin. Until 1906 he studied the piano with Árpád Szendy and composition with Hans Koessler at the Budapest Academy of Music, where he received the Volkmann Prize for composition, and at the same time he read political science at the university. While still a student he was second music critic of the Budapest German newspaper ...

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Deane L. Root

(b Island Pond, VT, July 28, 1901; d North Hollywood, CA, July 3, 1986). American bandleader, singer, saxophonist, actor and publisher. From 1918 he learnt the saxophone and played in a theatre orchestra in Portland, Maine, then attended the University of Maine (...

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Deane L. Root

(b Syracuse, NY, Jan 26, 1913; d Rancho Mirage, CA, Feb 7, 1990). American composer, publisher and pianist. At the age of 16 he became a pianist, singer and announcer for a radio station and adopted his professional name. He then studied singing with Howard Lyman and wrote college shows at Syracuse University. In ...

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Deane L. Root

(b Indianapolis, IN, March 29, 1878; d Los Angeles, Oct 1, 1956). American songwriter and publisher, brother of Harry Von Tilzer. He adopted his brother’s pseudonym in 1899. He taught himself the piano, and became a pianist and arranger in Chicago for the publishing firm of Shapiro, Bernstein & Von Tilzer. In ...

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Deane L. Root

(b Detroit, July 8, 1872; d New York, Jan 10, 1946). American songwriter, publisher and performer. He added ‘Von’ to his mother’s maiden name and used this as a professional pseudonym. He worked in a circus and medicine show as a singer and tumbler and published his first song in ...

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William Brooks

(b Taunton, MA, March 20, 1829; d Boston, Jan 13, 1892). American composer and publisher. In 1868 he, W. Frank Smith and John F. Perry formed the publishing house of White, Smith & Perry; the next year they began to issue The Folio...

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Nicholas E. Tawa

(b Philadelphia, May 11, 1827; d Philadelphia, Nov 22, 1902). American composer, teacher and publisher . His parents were Joseph Eastburn Winner, a violin maker, and Mary Ann Winner (née Hawthorne), a relative of Nathaniel Hawthorne. Largely self-educated in music, he played and taught several instruments. Around ...

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(b Leicester, Feb 15, 1888; d Blackpool, May 16, 1964). British popular music publisher and songwriter . The son of a violin teacher and music stallholder, he performed as a violinist and singer with various concert parties and at the age of 18 set up his own music stall in Leicester. He rapidly built up his business and began publishing songs of his own. In ...