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Greil Marcus and Mickey Valley

Rock-and-roll male vocal duo. The singer, songwriter, and producer Jan Berry (b Los Angeles, CA, 3 April 1941; d Brentwood, CA, 26 March 2004) had his first success with the singer Arnie Ginsberg in the hit song, “Jennie Lee” (1958) which was recorded in Berry’s garage. He then formed a permanent partnership with the singer Dean Torrence (...

Article

Claire Levy

(b Plovdiv, 19 Dec 1937). Bulgarian composer, pianist, conductor, arranger, and bandleader. He was internationally acknowledged for his innovative ideas, cross-cultural experiments, and contribution to the concept of fusion and free improvisation. Classically trained at the Bulgarian State Conservatory (1955–60) under Pancho Vladigerov (composition) and Andrey Stoyanov (piano), he is the author of numerous compositions in styles and genres including jazz, pop, symphony, chamber, film, and theatrical music. He conducted the Radio and Television Big Band in Sofia (1962–6) and led his own avant-garde quartet, Jazz Focus’65 (1965–8), which won the Critic’s Prize at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1967. In 1970 he left Bulgaria for political reasons and moved to the USA where he joined the Don Ellis Orchestra (1971–8), and later collaborated with the classical/jazz quartet Free Flight. He also played with outstanding jazz musicians including Art Pepper, Billy Cobham, and Dave Holland, among many others....

Article

Colette Simonot

Songwriting team. Songwriter Barry Mann (b Brooklyn, NY, 9 Feb 1939) and lyricist Cynthia Weil (b New York, NY, 18 Oct 1940) became a prominent songwriting duo at Don Kirshner and Al Nevins’s Aldon Records in the 1960s. Mann was hired at Aldon in ...

Article

Stephanie Vander Wel

Songwriters and country music duo. Known as “Mr. and Mrs. Country Music,” Joe [Otis Wilson] Maphis (b Suffolk, VA, 12 May 1921; d Nashville, TN, 27 June 1986) and Rose Lee [Doris née Schetrompf] Maphis (b Baltimore, MD, 29 Dec 1922) were a popular husband-and-wife duo that contributed to the development of honky-tonk music in California during the 1950s. Their respective careers began in barn dance radio in the late 1930s. Billed as “Rose of the Mountains,” Rose performed sentimental songs on local stations in Hagerstown, Maryland, before joining the Saddle Sweethearts, a cowgirl ensemble, on Richmond Virginia’s WVRA ...