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and I used to go to the Brooklyn Paramount to catch them, and the
Fox. Then when I became interested in playing an instrument, I was
playing the saxophone, then I used to follow every band that came
into New York, particularly Paul Whiteman. You may not have heard
Paul Whiteman I've heard of, but I don't know anything about.
Paul Whiteman was a big band. It was a jazz band but concert
almost, because he introduced “Rhapsody in Blue.” Ferde Grofé was
the pianist in his band. And because it was a big band and it was
popular and famous, he hired the best musicians, Frankie Trombaur,
Jack Teagarden played trombone, and Chester Hazlett played sax and
clarinet. My sax teacher, Sidney Feldman, used to tell me about them
because these were like mythical greats, so I would follow them
wherever they went and played. Like, If they were at the Brooklyn
Paramount, I caught them at the Brooklyn Paramount. If they went to
the Palace, I went. The same act, but just sit close and listen to
them. You didn't learn anything from that. That's Mildred Bailey
singing, you know. That's the beginning. And then when I began to
play the saxophone, wisely but not well, I played in a band and
eventually I was going up to the mountains and playing in a band.
We'd better stop.
I don't want to get too far ahead because there are other things.
Let's back up.
I can see the music period is going to be a big discussion.
I need some musical background. Okay.
I just wanted to finish up on the Dodgers. Who were your heroes?
The Dodgers at that time, they had Dazzy Vance, great
pitcher. Dazzy Vance was outstanding. Zach Wheat, the left fielder,
was a big hero. They had for a while Rabbit Maranville, he wasn't very
good but he was very popular. He had the basket catch. They had a
lousy team, always sixth or seventh place. Jake Fournier was the first
baseman, then replaced by Del Bissonette. They had for a while a left
handed third baseman, used to throw to first on a bounce, Johnny
Barrett. They were a pretty lousy team, but the games with the
Giants were big. I remember even once going to a Giant game at the
Polo Grounds, which was very rare for me to go. That was a game in
which Al Tyson, of the Giants, collided with somebody else and broke
his leg. And then another guy who was very popular for us was
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