The singing was something I got from my father.
There were a lot of times where there was a great deal of fodder recorded and played, because there was a market for it – just as there is today. And there were more bad bands than there were good bands – I think that should always be remembered.
They’re asking for ludicrous, ridiculous kinds of tunes. It could be “Johnson Rag” or, “Don’t you have any Russ Morgan pieces?” or they’re always getting your tunes mixed up with someone else’s, so you get requests for “Green Eyes” or “Frenesi” or “In The Mood.” And they get very terse replies like “No,” or “He quit the business,” or “I’ll play that when I get to the big band in the sky.” It becomes a kind of standup routine.