Today is the birthday songwriter Roy Turk (1892-1934). He started out in vaudeville writing special material for the likes of Nora Bayes, Sophie Tucker and the team of Rock and White. Among the tunes he co-wrote are “Are You Lonesome Tonight” (1927, a hit three decades later for Elvis Presley), “I’ll Get By (As Long as I Have You)” and “Mean to Me”. He also co-wrote the songs to the Broadway shows Plantation Revue (1922) and Dixie to Broadway (1924-1925). Like most of the songwriters of his generation he went out to Hollywood when talkies came in, and he worked for the movie studios during his last few years.
To find out more about vaudeville past and present, 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