Orrin Tucker

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Orrin Tucker
Birth name Robert Orrin Tucker
Born (1911-02-17)February 17, 1911
Missouri St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.
Died April 9, 2011(2011-04-09) (aged 100)
California South Pasadena, California, U.S.
Occupation(s) Bandleader
Instruments Saxophone
Years active 1939–1990s

Robert Orrin Tucker (17 February 1911 in St. Louis, Missouri – 9 April 2011 in South Pasadena, California) was an American bandleader born in St. Louis, Missouri, whose theme song was Drifting and Dreaming. His biggest hit was Oh Johnny, Oh Johnny, Oh! (1939), sung by vocalist "Wee" Bonnie Baker. He founded his first band while a college student at North Central College near Chicago, Illinois.


Orrin Tucker's big band, which he formed in 1933, specialized in a more relaxed style of swing, which was somewhat less complex than the music of Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman and other famous contemporary bandleaders of the day. Tucker's orchestra produced more than 70 recordings, several of them selling more than a million copies. Tucker's most successful hit was the 1939 recording of the 1917 song “Oh Johnny, Oh Johnny, Oh!,” featuring the singer Wee Bonnie Baker.[1] Orrin Tucker applied for active duty in the Medical Corps in the Navy; he left the Orchestra June 7, 1942 and by July 15, 1942 expected the call for duty.[2]

Tucker and his orchestra remained active until the 1990s, when health problems forced him to retire. In 2003, Tucker was interviewed about his passion for music and his long career as a bandleader by the NAMM oral history program [2]. He died on April 9, 2011, aged 100.[3]


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ Billboard May 23, 1942
  3. ^ Obituary