Viewing page 10 of 48

Charlie McCarthy, to join the old veterans like Bob Hope. And into the army itself go Eddie Bracken and Ray Johnson. (What will Inner Sanctum be without Mr. Johnson's creepy tones?) Did we leave out Frankie Sinatra? Oh, perish forbid! He goes off the air the end of June to devote his Summer to lecturing youngsters on tendencies delinquent and to make a movie with youngsters for youngsters, worthy contribution to the home front.

Looking far down radio row, past the Summer trading posts, we see Big News, Good News for the Autumn kilocycles. Fred Allen returns with a regular program to be heard every Sunday night over WEAF. Fred Allen and all your favorites of Allen's Alley!

Watch CUE's radio listings for these changes. 

Young Man with a Guitar - Josh White

FOR some three years now patrons at Cafe Society Downtown have been going about their merry and frequently noisy ways during the show only to find themselves cowed into submission on the appearance of Josh White. For White, 29, handsome, great guitar-player and ballad singer, certain star of the otherwise ill-starred Blue Holiday (at the Belasco) is as stern in his audience demands as Toscanini. He won't play or sing for people who aren't ready to listen right down to their toes. Drop a pin and his hand pauses above the guitar, he glances in the direction of the offender and waits ... quiet, dignified, sure...for all sound to subside. If it doesn't, the customer gets one of White's cold, level looks. If, after this, he is still alive and kicking, not only the management but most other patrons take a hand in finishing him off.

This is no mere gesture of arrogance on the part of a temperamental performer. The very tender, almost keening quality of White's voice coupled with his impeccable guitar playing make such attention imperative. No blues-shouter, White nevertheless doesn't confine his singing to ballads...mixes blues with folk songs, work songs and Negro songs of protest. 

"Ah," he said, "I don't mind people humming or talking when I'm singing...but for songs like Strange Fruit say, or I Gave My Love a Cherry or The House I Live In... well, you have to have quiet for those songs." Those songs and Hard Time Blues (one of the 200 songs White has himself written) are his favorites, have in common the same studied, serious poignance, are apt to startle any audience into the most rapt attention.

Now appearing at the Cafe Society Uptown (starting this week), commenting on Blue Holiday in which he was, by far, the best performer, he said he likes shows (his last venture had been the ill-fated John Henry with Robeson in 

[[image: black and white photograph of Josh White]]
[[caption]] Josh White, great guitar player and ballad singer, heard nightly not only in Blue Holiday but at Cafe Society Downtown (for past three years). Story col. 1[[/caption]]

1941) because "a singer doesn't have to worry about cash registers ringing, glasses clinking". He likes concerts, too, (he has sung by invitation three times at the White House, given six Library of Congress concerts, recently returned from a successful concert tour with Libby Holman), because "you sing what you want. People can walk out if they don't like it".

He likes making movies, but not the kind he says Hollywood usually wants Negroes to appear in. He just completed a role for Universal in a picture called The Trumpet Talks. "Most of all," he said, "I'd like to have my own radio show. Not just singing American ballads ... but folk songs of the world." Familiar to many Americans through his recordings, he says these have typed him in a curious way. "I go around," he said, and people just don't believe I'm Josh White. Something about those records ... people expect to see an old man."

Summer Night Shows

ZANZIBAR opened its Summer revue last week in the midst of new tropical Franklin Hughes decor. Even the two huge blackamoors that guard the entrance upstairs were bedecked in fruit and flowers instead of leopard skins. Cab Calloway heads a show that is one of the clickest, fastest that Zanzibar has presented. Except in his special "King Cab" number, Cab appears in suits not too "zoot", thank goodness. Beautiful Pearl Bailey of the slender graceful hands, expressive eyebrows was high spot of the show for us when she sang a song called Tired. Her brother Bill Bailey, who reminds us of a cross between Jack Dempsey and Bill Robinson, was a close second with his tap dancing. Day, Dawn and Dusk Trio harmonize well and Count Le Roy will amaze you when he dances on roller skates on a platform a yard square.

Female tour de force of the town (now that Hazel Scott is in Hollywood) is Hildegarde at the Plaza ... with her amazing collection of moods, songs and lighting. Whether you like her or hate her (there are no in-betweens), her bag of tricks is enough to mesmerize most humans. This year it includes sentimental love songs, naughty-naughty songs, Raleigh cigarettes and a service man act (see picture, p. 17), and the dozen red roses (this year from Wadley & Smythe). 

In the Cotillion Room at the Pierre, Wally Boag - a personable young fellow with a  light line of chatter - blows dogs, giraffes and pink elephants out of limp rubber balloons. On the same bill are dancers Jayne Di Gatano and Adam (last seen in Follow The Girls). A man near us said, "Her costume should get special mention." Here it is: a dress of white mousseline de soie with a splash of brilliant pink ribbon over one breast.

8
Please note that the language and terminology used in this collection reflects the context and culture of the time of its creation, and may include culturally sensitive information. As an historical document, its contents may be at odds with contemporary views and terminology. The information within this collection does not reflect the views of the Smithsonian Institution, but is available in its original form to facilitate research. For questions or comments regarding sensitive content, access, and use related to this collection, please contact transcribe@si.edu.