Huey Long (singer)
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April 25, 1904|
Sealy, Texas, USA
|Died||June 10, 2009
Houston, Texas, USA
|Genres||Jazz, Swing, Dixieland|
|Instruments||Banjo, Guitar, Piano, Ukulele|
|Associated acts||The Ink Spots|
Huey Long (April 25, 1904 – June 10, 2009) was an African American jazz and swing singer-songwriter and musician and was a member of the vocal group The Ink Spots He was the last living member of the group.
Born in Sealy, Texas, Long began his musical career in 1925 playing banjo for Frank Davis' Louisiana Jazz Band, based in Houston. He switched from the banjo to the guitar after moving to Chicago, where he appeared at the 1933 World's Fair with Texas Guinan's Cuban Orchestra. He performed with artists such as Lil Armstrong and Fletcher Henderson, and his career also encompassed sideman, band leader, music arranger and music teacher.
In 1943, Ink Spots original guitarist Charlie Fuqua was drafted into the army and replaced by Bernie Mackey. When Mackey departed in 1945 leader Bill Kenny offered Long the position. Long stayed with the original Ink Spots for nine months until October 1945 when Fuqua returned from the Army. Long eventually moved to New York City, where he taught music. In the 1960s he joined or led various Ink Spots tribute groups.
In later life he retired to Houston, where his daughter vocalist Anita set up a museum commemorating the Ink Spots and dedicated to Long in particular.
At about the age of 102, Mr. Long began visiting Velma Jackson who was 92 at the time. Velma had previously played the piano on a radio program in nearby Galveston. Velma and Mr. Long were introduced by a mutual caregiver, Marcelle Young, who took Velma to Mr. Long's house in Houston where they played together, with Velma on the piano and Mr. Long on the guitar. Velma died in 2008 at the age of 94.
- Turner, Allan (June 11, 2009). "Ink Spots guitarist Huey Long, 105, dies in Houston". The Houston Chronicle. Retrieved January 30, 2015.
- Leigh, Spencer (June 17, 2009). "Huey Long: Singer and guitarist who found fame with the Ink Spots". The Independent. Retrieved January 30, 2015.