J. Fred Coots
John Frederick Coots (May 2, 1897 – April 8, 1985) was an American songwriter. He composed over 700 popular songs and over a dozen Broadway shows. In 1934, Coots wrote the melody with his then chief collaborator, lyricist Haven Gillespie, for the biggest hit for them both "Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town." The song became one of the biggest sellers in American history.
In 1934, when Gillespie brought him the lyrics to "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town", Coots came up with the skeleton of the music in just ten minutes. Coots took the song to his publisher, Leo Feist Inc., who liked it but thought it was "a kids' song" and didn't expect too much from it. Coots offered the song to Eddie Cantor who used it on his radio show that November and it became an instant hit. The morning after the radio show there were orders for 100,000 copies of sheet music and by Christmas sales had passed 400,000.
Birth and Death Data: Born May 2nd, 1897 (New York City), Died New York City
Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1920 - 1942
Roles Represented in DAHR: composer, songwriter, tenor vocal, lyricist, piano
Recordings (Results 1-25 of 292 records)
|Company||Matrix No.||Size||First Recording Date||Title||Primary Performer||Description||Role||Audio|
|Victor||B-27129||10-in.||11/9/1922||Time will tell||Great White Way Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Victor||B-28913||10-in.||11/7/1923||Home town blues||Virginians||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Victor||B-29537||10-in.||2/21/1924||Not yet, Suzette!||Brooke Johns Orchestra ; Brooke Johns||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||B-29565||10-in.||3/3/1924||Innocent eyes||International Novelty Orchestra||Orchestra||composer|
|Victor||B-30416||10-in.||6/26/1924||In the candle light||Peerless Quartet||Male vocal quartet, with orchestra||composer|
|Victor||BVE-32763||10-in.||7/9/1925||Why is love?||Paul Whiteman Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Victor||BVE-33307||10-in.||8/13/1925||The promenade walk||Johnny Hamp ; Kentucky Serenaders||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Victor||BVE-43663||10-in.||4/22/1928||It was the dawn of love||Paul Whiteman Orchestra||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal quartet||composer|
|Victor||BVE-46620||10-in.||7/27/1928||Moonlight madness||Nathaniel Shilkret ; Victor Orchestra||Orchestra, with male vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||BVE-47511||10-in.||9/13/1928||Doin' the raccoon||George Olsen and his Music||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal chorus||composer|
|Victor||BVE-47549||10-in.||9/21/1928||'Round evening||Charlie Farrell ; Jim Miller||Male vocal duet, with violin, guitar, and piano||composer|
|Victor||BVE-47801||10-in.||10/3/1928||A precious little thing called love||George Olsen and his Music||Jazz/dance band, with female vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||BVE-48614||10-in.||11/22/1928||'Round evening||Johnny Hamp ; Kentucky Serenaders||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||BVE-48626||10-in.||11/27/1928||Here comes my ball and chain||Coon-Sanders Original Nighthawk Orchestra||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||BVE-48951||10-in.||4/1/1929||A precious little thing called love||Jesse Crawford||Pipe organ solo||songwriter|
|Victor||BVE-49259||10-in.||12/14/1928||A love tale of Alsace Lorraine||Pennsylvanians ; Fred Waring||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal trio (takes 7-9); with male vocal solo (takes 1-6)||composer|
|Victor||MVE-49319||16-in.||12/1/1928||The shopworn angel||Motion Picture Orchestra||Motion picture soundtrack : Orchestra||composer|
|Victor||BVE-49663||10-in.||1/18/1929||Doin' the raccoon||Willard Robison||Male vocal solo, with piano (self-accompaniment)||composer|
|Victor||BVE-49668||10-in.||1/21/1929||A love tale of Alsace Lorraine||Sam Coslow||Male vocal solo, with orchestra||composer|
|Victor||BVE-49932||10-in.||2/7/1929||I'm thirsty for kisses, hungry for love||Dick Robertson ; Nathaniel Shilkret ; Victor Orchestra||Orchestra, with male vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||BVE-49976||10-in.||2/20/1929||A precious little thing called love||Johnny Marvin ; Ed Smalle||Male vocal duet, with instrumental ensemble||composer|
|Victor||BVE-49993||10-in.||2/25/1929||A love tale of Alsace-Lorraine||Melody Three||Male vocal trio, with orchestra||composer|
|Victor||BVE-50512||10-in.||2/22/1929||It's a precious little thing called love||Earl Hines||Piano solo, with clarinet and trumpet||composer|
|Victor||PBVE-50873||10-in.||4/28/1929||Sweetheart, where are you tonight||Gus Arnheim ; Gus Arnheim Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||songwriter|
|Victor||BVE-51084||10-in.||4/8/1929||It's a precious little thing called love||McKinney's Cotton Pickers||Jazz/dance band||composer|
Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Coots, J. Fred," accessed August 12, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/106489.
Coots, J. Fred. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved August 12, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/106489.
"Coots, J. Fred." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 12 August 2020.
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