Today is the birthday of tin pan alley songwriter Albert Von Tilzer (1878-1958). He started out as a musical director in vaudeville, then he went to work for his brother, tin pan alley songwriter Harry Von Tilzer at his publishing company. The young von Tilzer worked for 50 years banging out to tunes from roughly 1900-1950, and penning numbers for Broadway shows from 1904 through 1928. While he wrote hundreds of songs, one blows them all away in lasting popularity — in fact, it blows away nearly every other song in the world in lasting popularity. It is the 1908 song “Take Me Out the to the Ball Game”, co-written with Jack Norworth.
Just to show that he’s not just a one-trick pony though, here’s another of his songs “I’ll Be With You in Apple Blossom Time”, interpreted by the Andrews Sisters.
To learn more history about the history of vaudeville, consult No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famous, available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever nutty books are sold.
And don’t miss my new book Chain of Fools: Silent Comedy and Its Legacies from Nickelodeons to Youtube, just released by Bear Manor Media, also available from amazon.com etc etc etc