World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article
 

Arthur Tracy

Arthur Tracy
Background information
Birth name Abba Avrom Tracovutsky
Also known as The Street Singer
Born (1899-06-25)June 25, 1899
Kamenetz-Podolsky, Russian Empire (now Ukraine)
Died October 5, 1997(1997-10-05) (aged 98)
Genres Traditional pop, vocal
Occupation(s) Singer, actor
Instruments Vocals
Years active 1920s-30s, 1982
Associated acts
Romantic Melodies (1932)

Arthur Tracy (25 June 1899 – 5 October 1997)[1] was an American vocalist, billed as The Street Singer. His performances in theatre, films and radio, along with his recordings, brought him international fame in the 1930s. Late evening radio listeners tuned in to hear announcer David Ross' introduction ("Round the corner and down your way comes The Street Singer") and Tracy's familiar theme song, "Marta, Rambling Rose of the Wildwood."

Contents

  • Biography 1
  • Films 2
  • Notes 3
  • References 4
  • Listen to 5
  • External links 6

Biography

Born Abba Avrom Tracovutsky in Kamenetz-Podolsky, Russian Empire (now Ukraine), he emigrated to the United States with his parents, sisters, and brother in April 1906. After their release from the Ellis Island Immigrant station, they settled in Philadelphia. Naturalized in 1913, Tracy's parents became known as Morris and Fannie Tracy.

In 1917 Tracy graduated from Central High School. He began studying architecture at the University of Pennsylvania but dropped out to become a professional singer. He began singing part-time in the Yiddish theatre, minstrel shows and vaudeville while working as a furniture salesman.

After moving to New York City in 1924, he appeared regularly in vaudeville, joined the Blossom Time touring company and appeared in various New York amateur revues, where he was seen by William S. Paley who offered him a 15-minute CBS radio program.[2]

To avoid embarrassing his family if his show failed and to prevent being blackballed from future vaudeville bookings for having appeared on radio, Tracy decided to make his identity a mystery and borrowed a billing from the title of Frederick Lonsdale's musical The Street Singer (1924). Listeners demanded to know his identity, but it was not revealed until five months after his 1931 debut on CBS. The following year he was off to Hollywood to appear in The Big Broadcast (1932) with other radio stars, including Bing Crosby, Kate Smith, and the Boswell Sisters.

In the short film Ramblin' Round Radio Row #5 (1933), his last name is pronounced "Treecy".

Tracy gave his romantic interpretation to such songs as "When I Grow Too Old to Dream", "I'll See You Again", "Trees", "Everything I Have Is Yours", "Red Sails in the Sunset", "Harbor Lights", "The Whistling Waltz", and "Danny Boy". His September 1935 recording of "East of the Sun (and West of the Moon)" is among the very first of that much recorded song.

In 1978, Arthur Tracy was crowned King of the Beaux Arts Ball.[3] He presided with Queen Hope Hampton.

Arthur Tracy's 1937 recording of "Pennies from Heaven" was featured in the 1981 movie of that name, with Vernel Bagneris lip-synching to Tracy's voice. The film brought Tracy out of retirement, and at age 82 he returned as a cabaret singer at The Cookery in Greenwich Village in 1982. This brought a favorable review in The New York Times from John Wilson, who wrote that his vocalizing had "a delightful patina of period charm", adding that Tracy was "a spellbinder, setting a mood and scene, disarming the doubters by admitting that 'I always put all the schmalz I had into my songs.'"

Films

... aka Interval for Romannce
... aka Backstage (USA)
... aka Street Singer's Serenade

Notes

  1. ^ "RootsWeb: Database Index". rootsweb.com. 
  2. ^ Gussow, Mel (1997-10-08). "Arthur Tracy, 98, Musical Star Known as the Street Singer". NYTimes.com. Retrieved 2015-09-05. 
  3. ^ [2]

References

  • Social Security Death Index at rootsweb.com accessed 11 July 2006 by using advanced search for "Arthur Tracy" born in 1899.

Listen to

  • : Arthur Tracy sings "Marta" (39 minutes in)Antique Music Phonograph ProgramWFMU:

External links

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.