Garry Stevens

Photo of Garry Stevens

Vocalist Garry Stevens joined Charlie Spivak’s 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 Beneke’s 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 WRGB’s 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

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  • Papa Nicolini
    Charlie Spivak (Garry Stevens and the Stardusters), Okeh (1941)
  • At Last
    Charlie Spivak (Garry Stevens and the Stardusters), Columbia (1942)
  • Anniversary Song
    Tex Beneke and the Miller Orchestra (Garry Stevens and the Mello Larks), Victor (1947)
  • A Girl That I Remember
    Tex Beneke and the Miller Orchestra (Garry Stevens), Victor (1947)
  • East of the Sun (and West of the Moon)
    Tex Beneke and his Orchestra (Garry Stevens), Victor (1948)
  • Congratulations
    Tex Beneke and his Orchestra (Garry Stevens and The Moonlight Serenaders), Victor (1948)

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.