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Fats Waller

Thomas Wright "Fats" Waller (May 21, 1904 – December 15, 1943) was an American jazz pianist, organist, composer, violinist, singer, and comedic entertainer. His innovations in the Harlem stride style laid the groundwork for modern jazz piano. His best-known compositions, "Ain't Misbehavin'" and "Honeysuckle Rose", were inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1984 and 1999. Waller copyrighted over 400 songs, many of them co-written with his closest collaborator, Andy Razaf. Razaf described his partner as "the soul of melody... a man who made the piano sing... both big in body and in mind... known for his generosity... a bubbling bundle of joy". It's possible he composed many more popular songs and sold them to other performers when times were tough.

Waller started playing the piano at the age of six, and became a professional organist aged 15. By the age of 18 he was a recording artist. Waller's first recordings, "Muscle Shoals Blues" and "Birmingham Blues", were made in October 1922 for Okeh Records. That year, he also made his first player piano roll, "Got to Cool My Doggies Now". Waller's first published composition, "Squeeze Me", was published in 1924. He became one of the most popular performers of his era, touring internationally and achieving critical and commercial success in the United States and Europe. He died from pneumonia, aged 39.

Birth and Death Data: Born May 21st, 1904 (New York City), Died Kansas City

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1922 - 1942

Roles Represented in DAHR: piano, leader, vocalist, composer, pipe organ, songwriter, celeste, arranger, lyricist, organ, director, electric organ, speaker

Notes: Sometimes listed as Thomas Waller or Thomas Wright Waller.

Recordings (Results 376-400 of 572 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor BS-038212 10-in. 6/28/1939 What a pretty miss Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist, songwriter  
Victor BS-038424 10-in. 7/19/1939 Honeysuckle rose Bob Hamilton Trio Instrumental trio composer  
Victor BS-041528 10-in. 8/10/1939 (When you) Squeeze me Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist, songwriter  
Victor BS-041529 10-in. 8/10/1939 Bless you Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-041530 10-in. 8/10/1939 It's the tune that counts Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-041531 10-in. 8/10/1939 Abdullah Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-041532 10-in. 8/10/1939 Who'll take my place (When I'm gone) Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-041533 10-in. 8/10/1939 Bond Street Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, piano, leader, composer  
Victor BS-043346 10-in. 11/3/1939 It's you who taught it to me Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-043347 10-in. 11/3/1939 Suitcase Susie Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-043348 10-in. 11/3/1939 Your feet's too big Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-043349 10-in. 11/3/1939 You're lettin' the grass grow under your feet Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-043350 10-in. 11/3/1939 Darktown Strutters' Ball Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-043351 10-in. 11/3/1939 I can't give you anything but love, baby Una Mae Carlisle ; Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with female-male vocal duet (take 1); with male vocal solo (take 2) instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-044598 10-in. 1/12/1940 At twilight Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band ensemble with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist, songwriter  
Victor BS-044599 10-in. 1/12/1940 Oh! Frenchy Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-044600 10-in. 1/12/1940 Cheatin' on me Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist  
Victor BS-044601 10-in. 1/12/1940 Black Maria Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, arranger, vocalist  
Victor BS-044602 10-in. 1/12/1940 Mighty fine Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band ensemble with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, leader, vocalist, composer  
Victor BS-053433 10-in. 9/6/1940 Ain't misbehavin' Sidney Bechet ; New Orleans Feetwarmers Jazz/dance quintet composer  
Victor BS-062762 10-in. 3/20/1941 Pan-Pan Fats Waller and his Rhythm Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, piano, vocalist, leader  
Victor BS-063887 10-in. 5/13/1941 Georgia on my mind Fats Waller Piano solo instrumentalist, piano  
Victor BS-063888 10-in. 5/13/1941 Rockin' chair Fats Waller Piano solo instrumentalist, piano  
Victor BS-063889 10-in. 5/13/1941 Carolina shout Fats Waller Piano solo instrumentalist, piano  
Victor BS-063891 10-in. 5/13/1941 Ring dem bells Fats Waller Piano solo instrumentalist, piano  
(Results 376-400 of 572 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Waller, Fats," accessed September 22, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/101963.

Waller, Fats. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved September 22, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/101963.

"Waller, Fats." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 22 September 2020.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/101963

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