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Martin, Freddy (1906-1983)

Martin, Freddy (1906-1983)

In 1941, Freddy Martin's danceband recorded Tonight We Love, adapted from the well-known opening theme of Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto in B-flat minor. The disc sold one million copies by 1946, and inspired 16 different pop song renditions of the same tune. Martin followed this success with adaptations of other classical works, and also made cameo appearances with his band in a few 1940s Hollywood films, including Stage Door Canteen (1943). Ohio-born Martin served as music director for Elvis Presley's first Las Vegas appearance, and his tenor saxophone playing elicited the admiration of noted jazz players such as Johnny Hodges, who dubbed him "Mr. Silvertone." Martin's band, famous for its "sweet" sound, played New York's top hotel ballrooms during the 1930s and 1940s, and later made its home at the Cocoanut Grove at the Ambassador Hotel in Beverly Hills.

—Ivan Raykoff

Further Reading:

Garrod, Charles. Freddy Martin and His Orchestra. Zephyr Hills, Florida, Joyce Record Club Publication, 1987.

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