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Lee Morse

Lena Corinne "Lee" Morse (née Taylor; November 30, 1897 – December 16, 1954) was an American jazz and blues singer-songwriter, composer, guitarist, and actress. Morse's greatest popularity was in the 1920s and early 1930s as a torch singer, although her career began around 1917 and continued until her death in 1954.

Morse was known for her strong, deep singing voice and vocal range, which often belied her petite frame. She possessed a contralto vocal range, and one of her trademarks was her unique style of yodeling. Recording over 200 songs over her career, Morse was one of the most recorded female singers of the 1920s. She was also moderately successful as an actress on the Broadway stage. Her life and career, however, were marred by alcoholism. Morse's group the Blue Grass Boys had no relation either to their later namesake of Bill Monroe's nor bluegrass music.

In 2014, Morse's rendition of "If You Want the Rainbow" was used in an episode of the HBO series Boardwalk Empire.

Birth and Death Data: Born November 30, 1897 (Cove), Died December 16, 1954 (Rochester)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1923 - 1950

Roles Represented in DAHR: contralto, leader, composer, lyricist, songwriter

Notes: Described as "comedienne" in Victor ledgers.

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

Recordings (Results 26-50 of 116 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Columbia W144847 10-in. 10/10/1927 Someday you'll say "O.K." Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with instrumental quintet vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W145292 10-in. 12/9/1927 Keep sweeping the cobwebs off the moon Lee Morse and her Southern Serenaders Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band vocalist, contralto, leader  
Columbia W145293 10-in. 12/9/1927 I'm lonely Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band leader, lyricist, vocalist, contralto, composer  
Columbia W145294 10-in. 12/9/1927 Give me a good-night kiss Lee Morse and her Southern Serenaders Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band leader, vocalist, contralto, composer, lyricist  
Columbia W145564 10-in. 1/23/1928 Let a smile be your umbrella on a rainy day Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band vocalist, contralto, leader  
Columbia W145565 10-in. 1/23/1928 There must be a silver lining (That's shining for me) Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band vocalist, contralto, leader  
Columbia W145566 10-in. 1/23/1928 In the sing song sycamore tree Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band vocalist, contralto, leader  
Columbia W145584 10-in. 1/25/1928 After we kiss Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with guitar vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W145585 10-in. 1/25/1928 Poor butterfly waits for me Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with violin, piano, and lute composer, lyricist, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W146407 10-in. 6/6/1928 Mother and Dad Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band composer, lyricist, leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W146408 10-in. 6/6/1928 When I lost you Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W146409 10-in. 6/6/1928 Lonesome for you Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band composer, lyricist, leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W146578 10-in. 6/25/1928 Be sweet to me Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band leader, vocalist, contralto, songwriter  
Columbia W146579 10-in. 6/25/1928 Don't keep me in the dark, bright eyes Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W146580 10-in. 6/25/1928 Shadows on the wall Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance band composer, lyricist, leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W146989 10-in. 9/13/1928 Main Street Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance ensemble songwriter, leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W146990 10-in. 9/13/1928 I must have that man! Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance ensemble leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W146991 10-in. 9/13/1928 Mississippi mud Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance ensemble leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W147087 10-in. 9/28/1928 You are my own Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with cornet, guitar, and piano vocalist, contralto, composer, lyricist, leader  
Columbia W147136 10-in. 10/23/1928 Old man sunshine Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance ensemble leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W147137 10-in. 10/23/1928 Don't be like that Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance ensemble leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W147138 10-in. 10/23/1928 Where the shy little violets grow Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance ensemble leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W147396 10-in. 12/7/1928 Let's do it (Let's fall in love) Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance ensemble leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W147397 10-in. 12/7/1928 Susianna Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance ensemble leader, vocalist, contralto  
Columbia W147398 10-in. 12/7/1928 Adellina Blue Grass Boys ; Lee Morse Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance ensemble leader, vocalist, contralto, composer, lyricist  
(Results 26-50 of 116 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Morse, Lee," accessed April 22, 2024, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/110542.

Morse, Lee. (2024). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved April 22, 2024, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/110542.

"Morse, Lee." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2024. Web. 22 April 2024.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/110542

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