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Famous Like Me > Composer > J > Harry James

Profile of Harry James on Famous Like Me

Name: Harry James  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 15th March 1916
Place of Birth: Albany, Georgia, USA
Profession: Composer
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia

Harry Haag James (March 15, 1916 - July 5, 1983) was a popular United States musician and band leader, and a well known trumpet virtuoso.

Harry James was born in Albany, Georgia, the son of a bandleader of a traveling circus. By age 10 he was taking trumpet lessons from his father. His father had him on a very strict practicing schedule everyday. He was given one page to learn out of the Arban's book(a trumpet drill book)every day and could not do anything until he learned that page.

In 1931 the family settled in Beaumont, Texas and James began playing with local dance bands. James joined the nationally popular Ben Pollack in 1935. At the start of 1937 he left Pollack to join Benny Goodman's orchestra, where he stayed through 1938.

In February of 1939 Harry James debuted his own big band in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He continued touring with the band into the 1960s.

His was the first "name band" to employ vocalist Frank Sinatra, in 1939.

In 1943 he married actress Betty Grable.

You can hear his trumpet playing in the 1950 film Young Man with a Horn, dubbing Kirk Douglas. He also performs the song "I'm Beginning to See the Light" in the motion picture My Dog Skip (2000). James recorded many popular records and appeared in many Hollywood movies.

Harry James played his last professional job on 26 June 1983 in Los Angeles, California. He died less than two weeks later in Las Vegas, Nevada.

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Harry James