Abe Lyman

Abe Lyman (August 4, 1897 – October 23, 1957) was a popular bandleader from the 1920s to the 1940s. He made recordings, appeared in films and provided the music for numerous radio shows, including Your Hit Parade.

His name at birth was Abraham Simon. He and his brother, Mike, changed their last name to Lyman because they both thought it sounded better. Abe learned to play the drums when he was young, and at the age of 14 he had a job as a drummer in a Chicago café. Around 1919, he was regularly playing music with two other notable future big band leaders, Henry Halstead and Gus Arnheim, in California.

In Los Angeles Mike Lyman opened the Sunset, a night club popular with such film stars as Mary Pickford, Norma Talmadge, Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, and Harold Lloyd. When Abe's nine-piece band first played at the Sunset, it was a success, but the club closed after celebrities signed contracts stating they were not to be seen at clubs.

For an engagement at the Cocoanut Grove in The Ambassador Hotel on April 1, 1922, Abe added a violinist and saxophonist. Opening night drew a large crowd of 1500 guests in the Cocoanut Grove, plus another 500 more outside.

Lyman appeared on radio as early as 1922. His orchestra was broadcast from The Ambassador Hotel by late March on KOG.

After the band cut their first record under the local label Nordskog Records, they moved a year later to Brunswick Records in summer of 1923. There they made many recordings and were one of Brunswick's leading orchestras through 1935, when Lyman signed to Decca Records. In late 1937, Lyman signed with Victor where he was assigned their Bluebird label. He recorded prolifically for them through 1942. The Lyman Orchestra toured Europe in 1929, appearing at the Kit Cat Club and the Palladium in London and at the Moulin Rouge and the Perroquet in Paris. Lyman and his orchestra were featured in a number of early talkies, including Hold Everything (1930), Paramount on Parade (1930), Good News (1930) and Madam Satan (1930). In 1931, Abe Lyman and his orchestra recorded a number of soundtracks for the Merrie Melodies cartoon series. Notable musicians in the Lyman Orchestra included Ray Lopez, Gussie Mueller, and Orlando "Slim" Martin.

During the 1930s, the Lyman Orchestra was heard regularly on such shows as Accordiana and Waltz Time every Friday evening and on NBC, Coast to Coast. Under the name "Rose Blane" Lyman's wife was vocalist with the band during this period. Lyman and his orchestra sat in for Phil Harris on the Jack Benny program in 1943 when Harris served in the Merchant Marines.

When Lyman was 50 years old, he left the music industry and went into the restaurant management business. He died in Beverly Hills, California at the age of 60.

Birth and Death Data: Born August 4, 1897 (Chicago), Died October 23, 1957 (Beverly Hills)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1922 - 1942

Roles Represented in DAHR: leader, director, composer, songwriter, speaker, lyricist

= Recordings are available for online listening.
= Recordings were issued from this master. No recordings issued from other masters.

Recordings (Results 226-250 of 414 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Brunswick E28859 10-in. 11/30/1928 Driftwood Hal Kemp Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with vocal songwriter  
Brunswick E30089 10-in. 6/27/1929 Suzanna Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with vocal; without vocal (take G) leader  
Brunswick E30090 10-in. 6/27/1929 Junior Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with vocal; without vocal (take G) leader  
Brunswick E30094 10-in. 6/28/1929 Ain’t misbehavin’ Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo; without vocal (take G) leader  
Brunswick E30095 10-in. 6/28/1929 Bashful baby Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo; without vocal (take G) leader  
Brunswick XE30952 12-in. 9/16/1929 Brunswick brevities program G [part unknown] Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Radio transcription disc : Jazz/dance band leader, speaker  
Brunswick XE30953 12-in. 9/16/1929 Brunswick brevities program G, pt. 1 Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Radio transcription disc : Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo leader  
Brunswick XE30954 12-in. 9/16/1929 Brunswick brevities program G, part 2 Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Radio transcription disc : Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo leader, speaker  
Brunswick XE30955 12-in. 9/16/1929 Brunswick brevities program G [part unknown] Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Radio transcription disc : Jazz/dance band leader, speaker  
Brunswick XE30956 12-in. 9/16/1929 Brunswick brevities program G [part unknown] Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Radio transcription disc : Jazz/dance band leader, speaker  
Brunswick XE30957 12-in. 9/16/1929 Brunswick brevities program G, part 4 Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band leader, speaker  
Brunswick E30983 10-in. Sept. 1929 I’m only making believe Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with vocal; without vocal (take G) leader  
Brunswick E31021 10-in. Oct. 1929 [Unknown title(s)] Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with vocal; without vocal (take G) leader  
Brunswick E31023 10-in. Oct. 1929 Another night (Within your arms) Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with vocal; without vocal (take G) leader  
Brunswick E31140 10-in. Oct. 1929 Love ain’t nothin’ but the blues Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo; without vocal (take G) leader  
Brunswick E31573 10-in. Dec. 1929 The shepherd’s serenade (Do you hear me calling you?) Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with vocal; without vocal (take G) leader  
Brunswick E31625 10-in. Dec. 1929 If he cared Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with vocal; without vocal (take G) leader  
Brunswick E36757 10-in. 5/11/1931 Faithfully yours Tom Gerun Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo songwriter  
Brunswick E36919 10-in. 7/10/1931 You can’t stop me from lovin’ you Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo leader  
Brunswick E36920 10-in. 7/10/1931 Give me your affection, honey Californians Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo leader  
Brunswick E36921 10-in. 7/10/1931 I can’t get Mississippi off my mind Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo leader  
Brunswick E36922 10-in. 7/10/1931 Why dance? Californians Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo leader  
Brunswick XE37315 12-in. 10/23/1931 Ooh! That kiss Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo leader  
Brunswick XE37316 12-in. 10/23/1931 You’re my everything Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo leader  
Brunswick C600-C601 10-in. 9/9/1926 Havin’ lots of fun Abe Lyman’s California Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with vocal leader  
(Results 226-250 of 414 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Lyman, Abe," accessed January 26, 2023, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104409.

Lyman, Abe. (2023). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved January 26, 2023, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104409.

"Lyman, Abe." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2023. Web. 26 January 2023.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104409

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