Fats Waller

Thomas Wright Waller ( born May 21, 1904 in Harlem, New York, † December 15, 1943 in Santa Fé - Express in the amount of Kansas City from pneumonia ) was a noted jazz pianist, organist, composer and singer. The named because of his handsome body circumference Fats jazzmen had great importance in the development of early jazz from the 1920s to the Swing of the 1930s and 1940s.

Life and work

Fats began his career at a young age as a theater organist. James P. Johnson, who dominated masterfully the Harlem stride piano style to the youthful talent participated in, gave his jazz piano style the first cut and introduced him to the jazz scene in Harlem. Fats ' mentors James P. Johnson and Willie "The Lion" Smith were relieved himself in the role as the most important Harlem stride pianists over time of Waller. Except by solo recordings on disk and pianola roll grew his fame as the star of Rent- parties in Harlem and as a companion of famous blues singers. Ever is the number and type of occupations with which Waller recorded in the first years of his recording career, a mirror of the incredible experimentation and creativity of jazz musicians in these early years. Waller was one of the first jazz pieces grossed on the organ. He did pioneering work on this instrument and taught later the young Count Basie it.

In 1924 he was in Andy Razaf the most important and congenial for his compositions lyric writer. Even over the phone was one of the Razaf / Waller songs. In the Broadway show Hot Chocolates in 1929 many of the songs were presented, including " Is not Misbehavin ' " by Louis Armstrong, who became the star of the show. Waller's own solo recording for Victor was ranked 17, the first of a total of 63 hits during his career; Another successful title in the charts followed but only in 1934 with Eddie DeLanges composition " I Wish I Were Twins".

With Fats Waller and His Rhythm, which included, inter alia, Al Casey, Herman Autrey and Harry Dial, Waller finally had one of the best small swing bands; he made with these and other bands recordings and was the country to hear about a radio station - a DOMICILED always ready for a joke entertainer with his funny lyrics and Liedtextabwandlungen. He had now developed the stride piano style to a significant piano style of swing. On tour in Europe he was received enthusiastically, first presented in England in 1938 even on television. With the London Suite, a composition of six highly elegant musical miniatures over boroughs of London, he thanked it.

Waller worked throughout his career with in three Hollywood musicals and it created some so-called Soundies, small music box short films in which Waller's Rhythm could put their talents to a song long. In 1942, Fats Waller also a highly regarded concert at Carnegie Hall in New York, then as now the supreme consecration of every musician.

The extravagant lifestyle Wallers also drew repeatedly health problems. Despite some attempts to exercise restraint and switch to lighter refreshments such as wine or Cyder, but could not replace the familiar taste of Old Grand- Dad Bourbon Whiskey.

The incredible creative power Waller shows in hundreds of compositions in his name, many others, due to the former publisher practices even other composers are attributed in part, and hundreds of recordings in a variety of occupations. From the first recordings in 1922 to his last in 1943 there are none, in which not the typical verve and the so-called " Waller Drive" dominates. Even the rather melancholy gospel recordings on the church organ, the instrument that brought Fats in the jazz and what he could elicit almost the only Swing, evidence not only of great spirituality but also of great musical depth.

Waller is often described as the " Clown Prince Of Jazz", but you never get the impression that he would sell in any way or to make himself "Uncle Tom", as some other black musicians had to make at this time. Waller seems to give us through his music and his singing always that one above all themselves should not take it so seriously the life and. In 1943 he wrote the Broadway show Early to Bed, filmed in Hollywood Stormy Weather, played countless gigs for the troops, American soldiers and enlisted in radio broadcasts for the purchase of war bonds.

For the first time in July 1941 played Fats Waller with a Studio Big Band including his record collection a combo; it was also his last hit in his lifetime, " Come and Get It " (# 22). In the train on the way back from Hollywood, he died on December 15, 1943 a protracted pneumonia. After a large funeral in New York, his body was burned and the ashes - scattered from an airplane over Harlem - at his request.

Waller's life and music are central Michel Gondry movie Be Kind Rewind contents in (2008).

Other works

  • Honeysuckle Rose
  • (What Did I Do to Be so ) Black and Blue? (Text Razaf )
  • Wild Cat Blues - known in a version of Henry Arland as background music for the break cats of Hessischer Rundfunk.

Solo piano pieces, including Stride piano bravura as

  • Handful of Keys
  • Jitterbug Waltz