Richard Himber‘s not as well remembered today as other band leades of the 1930s, but he was plenty big in his day. His music certainly stands up, and we regularly feature his recordings on Cladrite Radio. When this Snapshot in Prose first saw the light of day, in 1935, his orchestra was holding forth from New York’s Ritz-Carlton hotel, and his popular radio program was flying high.
As the story reveals, though, Himber’s origins were more modest than that. A precocious youth, he got his first professional gig playing violin for a Coney Island dance orchestra at the dewy age of 13. Not a bad jump, from Coney Island to the Ritz-Carlton.
P.S. Read all the way to the end of the story, and you’ll find a couple of our favorite Himber recordings awaiting you.