Howard in 1960
September 12, 1914|
|Died||May 23, 1963
Palm Desert, California
Eddy Howard was born in Woodland, California, and after attending San Jose State College from 1931 to 1933, studied medicine at Stanford University before dropping out to become a singer of romantic ballads on Los Angeles radio. Later he sang with bands led by Ben Bernie and Dick Jurgens. His hits with Jurgens included "My Last Goodbye" and "Careless," which became his theme.
In 1939 Howard started his own band, and he was the regular vocalist on It Can Be Done, Edgar A. Guest's 1941 radio program on the Blue Network Wednesdays through Fridays. The first #1 single for Eddy Howard and his Orchestra, "To Each His Own", spent five non-consecutive weeks at the top of the U.S. pop chart in 1946. The song was a tie-in with the 1946 Paramount film, To Each His Own, which brought Academy Awards for Olivia de Havilland and screenwriter Charles Brackett. The recording by Howard was released by Majestic Records as catalog number 7188 and 1070. It first reached the Billboard chart on July 11, 1946 and spent a total of nineteen weeks on the chart.
On NBC's The Sheaffer Parade, sponsored by Sheaffer Pens, the Howard Orchestra was heard from September 14, 1947 to September 5, 1948.
In 1949, Howard signed to Mercury Records. His popularity continued into the 1950s with tracks such as "Maybe It's Because", and "Sin (It's No Sin)," which became Howard's second #1 tune, sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc. It was also a million selling hit for The Four Aces. Howard's last hit was "Teen-Ager's Waltz," which peaked at #90 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1955. In 1952-53 he was heard on CBS on Thursday nights at 10:45pm, with further broadcasts on Tuesdays at 10pm in 1955-56. The rise of rock music led to a decline in Howard's popularity.
Howard's star rose again during the 1960s, as part of the revival of interest in Big Band music and old-time radio that was collectively called "Nostalgia" in popular culture. Howard went into semi-retirement and his some-time saxophonist, vocalist-bandleader Norman Lee, procured the rights to use the Eddy Howard Orchestra name and the band's arrangements. Lee and the Orchestra became a dance-band staple throughout the U.S. midwest. Based out of Wichita, Kansas, they toured extensively and recorded on their own label, Marian Records. By the late 1960s, Lee dropped the Eddy Howard name and led the orchestra under his own moniker, though several Howard standards remained featured in their repertoire. The organization dissolved in the wake of the murder of Lee and his wife by one of the band's former trumpet players in the late 1970s.
- Who's Who in America, Volume 26. Chicago: A.N. Marquis Company, 1950.
- "The Song Remains: Eddy Howard"
- Eddy Howard Radio at Last.fm
- Eddy Howard singing "To Each His Own"
- Ron Coons (January 24, 2006). "Eddy Howard". Singer. Find a Grave. Retrieved June 30, 2011.