Mel Henke

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Mel Henke, c. 1943

Mel Henke (Chicago, August 4, 1915 – Los Angeles, March 31, 1979) was an American jazz pianist, Chicago bandleader, composer, arranger and jingle writer. Henke studied at the Chicago College of Music, then played with Chicago groups with Mitch Todd, Frank Snyder, Stephen Leonard and others. Henke recorded many jazz standards with his own arrangements, including a 1946 piano solo on Bix Beiderbecke's 1928 "In a Mist".[1] His best-known jingles included the Ajax cleanser "stronger than dirt" jingle, for Colgate-Palmolive, and "See the USA in Your Chevrolet" jingle for Chevrolet.[2]


  1. ^ David A. Jasen A Century of American Popular Music 2002, page 100 "IN A MIST Bix Beiderbecke Robbins Music—New York 1928 Introduced on disc by the composer (Okeh 4091 6). ... Mel Henke created his piano solo in 1946 (Tempo 12 3 2), and Harry James and His Orchestra recorded it in 1949 (Columbia ..."
  2. ^ CMJ New Music Monthly January 1998, page 12 "... La Dolce Henke by '60s jingle writer Mel Henke ("He's the guy who wrote the famous Ajax, 'stronger-than-dirt' jingle and 'See-the-U.S.A.-in-your-Chevrolet,'" explains Warren),"