Garry Stevens

Photo of Garry Stevens

Vocalist Garry Stevens joined Charlie Spivaks or­ches­tra in late 1941 and sang with the band un­til en­list­ing in the Army Air Force in mid-1942. His voice graced most of Spivak’s early pop­u­lar bal­lads, of­ten ac­com­pa­nied by the Stardusters vo­cal quar­tet. He ap­peared with the band in their 1941 Minoco soundie, Papa Nicolini,” and placed tenth in Billboard mag­a­zine’s 1943 col­lege poll for best male band vo­cal­ist.

After the war, in late 1946, Stevens be­came a mem­ber of Tex Benekes Glenn Miller or­ches­tra, where he per­formed on sev­eral of the band’s big hits. He also ap­peared with them in the short film Musical Merry-Go-Round #2.

Stevens quit Beneke in March 1948 to set­tle down in the Albany, New York, area, where his wife had fam­ily. He be­came a disk jockey on Albany sta­tion WROW in April and re­mained there un­til mov­ing to Schenectady, New York, sta­tion WGY in mid-1950. He of­ten sang and per­formed at lo­cal events.

In late 1950, he be­came the singing em­cee on Schenectady tele­vi­sion sta­tion WRGBs lo­cal TV Showcase pro­gram, an hour-long show be­gin­ning at six in evening. As well as singing and host­ing the show, Stevens played trum­pet and lead the pro­gram’s seven-piece band, the After Six Seven. The show lasted un­til 1957, when the sta­tion can­celled it as part of a move to cut ex­penses. Stevens then took a job as as­sis­tant sales man­ager at Cook Moving and Storage, though he con­tin­ued to per­form lo­cally at least into the 1960s.

Garry Stevens later moved to California and passed away in 2009, age 93.

Music

Previous <<
Play > Pause ||
Next >>
0:00 / 0:00
Select a song to play
Play All
  • Papa Nicolini
    Charlie Spivak (Garry Stevens and the Stardusters), Okeh (1941)
  • At Last
    Charlie Spivak (Garry Stevens and the Stardusters), Columbia (1942)
  • Anniversary Song
    Texe Beneke and the Miller Orchestra (Garry Stevens), Victor (1947)

All recordings are from the Internet Archive's 78rpm collection. Copyright owners, please see our removal policy.

Sources

  1. Simon, George T. The Big Bands. 4th ed. New York: Schirmer, 1981.
  2. “Garry Stevens.” IMDb. Accessed 29 Jul. 2016.
  3. “Nightclub Reviews: Sherman Hotel, Panther Room, Chicago.” Billboard 29 Aug. 1942: 12.
  4. “On the Stand: Charlie Spivak.” Billboard 29 Aug. 1942: 12.
  5. “Students Select Singers.” Billboard 5 Jun. 1943: 20.
  6. “Movie Machine Reviews.” Billboard 22 Apr. 1944: 65.
  7. “On the Stand: Tex Beneke.” Billboard 3 Jan. 1948: 32.
  8. “Music As Written.” Billboard 27 Mar. 1948: 18.
  9. “Vox Jox.” Billboard 24 Apr. 1948: 19.
  10. “Dotted Notes.” The Coaticook Observer 30 Apr. 1948: 4.
  11. “Vox Jox.” Billboard 15 Jul. 1950: 36.
  12. “Billboard Compiles List of Top Local TV Talent.” Billboard 18 Nov. 1950: 5.
  13. “TV Singing Host Garry Stevens Now in Sales.” Schenectady Gazette 23 Nov. 1957: 10.
  14. “Earle Pudney Feels Blessed by Family.” Schenectady Gazette 12 Apr. 1998: G2.