Columbo, Russ [Ruggiero Eugenio di Rodolpho ]
- Lars Helgert
[Ruggiero Eugenio di Rodolpho ]
(b Camden, NJ, Jan 14, 1908; d Hollywood, CA, Sept 2, 1934). American singer and violinist. His musical career encompassed a variety of areas, including film, radio, recordings, and composition. His early work as a violinist on silent film sets was followed by singing roles in sound films and a starring role in the film musical Wake Up and Dream (1934). Columbo played violin in various hotel and theater orchestras before being hired as a violinist and backup singer by Gus Arnheim and his Cocoanut Grove Orchestra in 1928; he became the group’s featured singer after the departure of Bing Crosby. Columbo later formed his own orchestra; musicians who played with this group included Benny Goodman, Gene Krupa, Jimmy McPartland, and Leo Arnaud. He also starred as a singer on radio programs in New York and Los Angeles, which significantly increased his popularity. The majority of Columbo’s studio recordings were made for the RCA Victor during the period ...