Pee Wee Hunt

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Walter Gerhardt "Pee Wee" Hunt (May 10, 1907 – June 22, 1979) was an American jazz trombonist, vocalist and band leader.[1]

Pee Wee Hunt in 1941.

Hunt was born in Mount Healthy, Ohio.[2] He developed musical interest at an early age, as his mother, Sadie, played the banjo and his father, Edgar C., played violin. He had a younger sister, Marian, and younger brother, Raymond. The teenage Hunt was a banjoist with a local band while he was attending college at Ohio State University where he majored in Electrical Engineering,[3] and during his college years he switched from banjo to trombone. He graduated from the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music.[3] He joined Jean Goldkette's Orchestra in 1928.[3]

Pee Wee Hunt was the co-founder and featured trombonist with the Casa Loma Orchestra, but he left the group in 1943 to work as a Hollywood radio disc jockey before joining the Merchant Marine near the end of World War II.[3] He returned to the West Coast music scene in 1946. His "Twelfth Street Rag" was a three million-selling,[1] number one hit in September 1948.[2] He was satirized as Pee Wee Runt and his All-Flea Dixieland Band in Tex Avery's animated MGM cartoon Dixieland Droopy (1954). His second major hit was "Oh!" (1953), his second million selling disc, which reached number three in the Billboard chart.[4]

At age 72, Hunt died after a long illness in Plymouth, Massachusetts, near where his partner in Casa Loma Glen Gray also lived with family. Hunt and his wife, Ruth, had a daughter Holly and son Lawrence.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Pee Wee Hunt - Hollywood Star Walk - Los Angeles Times". Projects.latimes.com. 1979-06-24. Retrieved 2015-08-17. 
  2. ^ a b Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 44. ISBN 0-214-20512-6. 
  3. ^ a b c d Biographical notes by Roger St. Peirre on LP record MFP1151 Twelfth Street Rag
  4. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 65. ISBN 0-214-20512-6. 

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