Have you got that? Oh I know, but I'm not doing well - I'm all shivering.
ANNETTE HANSHAW - a great vocalist remembered
A few weeks ago I mentioned, while commemorating the fact that Django Reinhardt was born 100 years ago, the fact that several famous jazz musicians were also born 100 years ago. Scott Yanow lists in his book Jazz on Record - The First Sixty Years a long list with names of musicians born in 1910. One of the names on that list was vocalist Annette Hanshaw, born, at her own account on the 18th of October, 1910. She passed away in March 1983. Well according to this information Annette Hanshaw was born 100 years ago, but ........... I posted a blog commemorating this fact, but several people informed me that Annette Hanshaw was actually born at her parent's residence in Manhattan on the 18th of October, 1901. Nephew Frank W. Hanshaw III confirmed that 1901 was the date written on Annette's birth certificate. I wonder why Annette lied about her year of birth 1910 instead of 1901 ............
So, no reason to commemorate Annette's 100th birthday this year, but enough other reasons to put her and her musical heritage into the spotlighhts in the next two blogs.
Daddy, Won't You Please Come Home - Annette Hanshaw and the New Englanders ( New York City, 31st of May, 1929) Personel: prob. Charlie Spivak trumpet, unknown trombone, Jimmy Dorsey reeds, Hymie Wolfson reeds, prob. Ben Selvin violin, Arthur Schutt piano, Tony Colucci guitar, prob. Hank Stern tuba and Stan King drums.
Some of us like Annette Hanshaw and collect her records, even when there's no Lang or Dorseys backing her. We don't collect any of the other singers of the period, so what's so special about Annette? I'll tell you what - style ( prob. Laury Wright in Diskrimination (Storyville 15 (Feb. 1968) p. 23).
Annette Hanshaw (1901 - 1983)
Isn't it remarkable that this vocalist is still remembered, although unlisted in the major jazz encyclopaedia ( like the New Groove Dictionary of Jazz), unnamed in the Early Jazz and The Swing Era by Gunther Schuller, Alyn Shipton's A New History of Jazz or Linda Dahl's Stormy Weather, the Music and Lives of a century of jazzwomen, but, to be honest, remembered in Richard M. Sudhalter's Lost Chords. Annette's career was short - very short - just eight years in the spotlights and in 1934 she stopped to get married ........... In fact she was not a real jazz vocalist, although Brian Rust labeled her so ( he was prejudiced), and that's might be the reason that she is not mentioned in the jazz dictionaries, being a "pop" star, like Ruth Etting, Lee Wiley and Mildred Bailey.
If you remember Annette's records, it could have been because of her catchphrase "That's All".
It is said that Annette was discovered, aged 25 years old, at a private party by the Musical Director of Pathé Records Herman (or Wally) Rose. Born in New York City in 1910 she had become a beautiful young, rather shy, introvert woman - a flapper wife, as this type of young "modern", fashionably dressed ladies were called. My Pocket Dictionary of American Slang describes it as: "The popular female type of the 1920s ... - A Helen Kane-type Betty Boop Caricature. "
Annette was invited by Herman Rose to make a test recording for Pathé Records. In the studios she sung a medley of popular "Hits of the day" and accompanied herself at the piano; when she had finished the first test you can hear her say: Have you that? Oh I know but I'm not doing well - I'm all shivering, Mister. ... (Name of the soundeditor unknown). Her second test, maybe unknown about how recordings worked, she called her famous words "That's All", not realizing that the recording didn't end. Everybody was astonished about this natural artist with that great voice and she got a contract on the spot.
These test recordings have survived and I love to share it with you:
Medley - E-2476 / Medley - E-2477 by Annette Hanshaw vocal and piano. Recorded the 28th of July, 1926
In July 1926 she got a contract from Pathé Records after she played on a test recording. Pathé decided to add her catchphrase: That's All in (almost) all future Hanshaw recordings. And so it happened ..... That's all.
In a second blog, entitled Annette Hanshaw - I hated those records more about the rest of her career.
When I first heard the rather childlike voice of Annette Hanshaw and I saw her pictures I fell in love ........... and I still am. My first acquaintance must have been one of those Fountain / Retrieval albums released in the 1980s thanks to the research of discographer and record collector Brian Rust. He located her late 1950s in New York as Mrs. Annette Rose, a widow working as a stenographer in a firm of lawyers. She was exactly as charming, shy and somewhat bewildered as might have been expected, Brian remembered. Enough reasons to spotlight her in two blogs. If you don't want to miss it, follow it at Twitter or ask for the free newsletter. That's all!
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