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 426-450 of 572 records)
|Company||Matrix No.||Size||First Recording Date||Title||Primary Performer||Description||Role||Audio|
|Columbia||W144317||10-in.||6/11/1927||Alligator crawl||14 Doctors of Syncopation ; Doc Cook||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W144550||10-in.||8/23/1927||St. Louis shuffle||Paul Specht Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W144955||10-in.||11/4/1927||Hop off||Fletcher Henderson's Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W145533||10-in.||1/17/1928||Back in your own back yard||Johnny Thompson||Male vocal solo, with violin, cello, and piano||instrumentalist, piano|
|Columbia||W145534||10-in.||1/17/1928||Nobody knows (How much I love you)||Johnny Thompson||Male vocal solo, with violin,cello, and piano||instrumentalist, piano, composer|
|Columbia||W145604||10-in.||2/1/1928||One o'clock blues||Connie's Inn Orchestra (Leroy Tibbs) ; Leroy Tibbs||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W145839||10-in.||3/26/1928||I'm more than satisfied||Guy Lombardo ; Royal Canadians||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal trio||composer|
|Columbia||W145947||10-in.||5/4/1928||Chinese blues||Charles W. Hamp||Male vocal solo||songwriter|
|Columbia||W147726||10-in.||12/21/1928||If you like me like I like you||Clarence Williams’ Jazz Kings||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||songwriter|
|Columbia||W148432||10-in.||4/12/1929||I've got a feeling I'm falling||Willard Robison and the Levee Loungers||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||composer|
|Columbia||148459||10-in.||4/19/1929||I've got a feeling I'm falling||Irving Kaufman ; Ray Nichols ; Palais Royal Orchestra||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||composer|
|Columbia||W148484||10-in.||5/8/1929||I've got a feeling I'm falling||Campus Boys ; Ted Wallace||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo and male vocal ensemble||composer|
|Columbia||W148489||10-in.||5/9/1929||I've got a feeling I'm falling||Annette Hanshaw ; The New Englanders||Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W148529||10-in.||5/14/1929||I've got a feeling I'm falling||The Mystery Girl||Female vocal solo, with orchestra||composer|
|Columbia||W148640||10-in.||5/28/1929||That rhythm man||Sonny Greer and his Memphis Men||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W148745||10-in.||6/21/1929||I'm not worrying||Clarence Williams’ Jazz Kings||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||composer|
|Columbia||W148762||10-in.||6/28/1929||Ain't misbehavin'||Charleston Chasers||Jazz/dance band, with female vocal solo||composer|
|Columbia||W148791||10-in.||7/6/1929||Ain't misbehavin'||Jerry Mason and his Californians ; Robert Wood||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||composer|
|Columbia||W148817||10-in.||7/16/1929||Ain't misbehavin'||Sammy Fain||Male vocal solo, with orchestra||composer|
|Columbia||W148905||10-in.||8/20/1929||Ain't misbehavin'||Ruth Etting||Female vocal solo, with orchestra||composer|
|Columbia||W148941||10-in.||8/26/1929||Freeze out||Clarence Williams’ Jazz Kings||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W149057||10-in.||9/26/1929||Railroad rhythm||Clarence Williams’ Jazz Kings||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W149100||10-in.||10/5/1929||Ain't misbehavin'||George Bias||Male vocal solo, with violin and piano||composer|
|Columbia||W149183||10-in.||10/25/1929||My fate is in your hands||Carmen Lombardo ; Guy Lombardo ; Royal Canadians||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||composer|
|Columbia||W149404||10-in.||11/11/1929||My fate is in your hands||Lou Gold Orchestra||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||composer|
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.
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