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Fred Lowery

Fred Lowery (2 November 1909 – 11 December 1984) was a blind professional whistler who recorded a No. 9 Billboard chart hit version of "The High and the Mighty" with conductor and arranger LeRoy Holmes. Lowery whistled with Horace Heidt and Vincent Lopez in the 1930s and 40s. His 'Silent Night' and 'William Tell Overture' demonstrate the difference between everyday whistling and puccalo.

Lowery was born in Palestine in Anderson County in east Texas and lost his eyesight at the age of two after being stricken with scarlet fever. With an artificial right eye and limited vision in the left, Fred Lowery was legally blind - not totally blind. From the age of eight he was educated at the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired. In 1929, when he was attending school, he met a bird imitator. "He encouraged me," he recalled, "and I began to discover there was more to whistling than bird calls." After a series of minor successes, including a radio show on WFAA in Dallas, and a 4 1/2 year engagement with the Vincent Lopez orchestra in New York, he was heard by Horace Heidt. Heidt gave Lowery his chance for national recognition as a featured part of his show. In 1945, Lowery struck out on his own. His 1939 version of the song Indian Love Call sold over 2 million copies. During his career, he performed at Carnegie Hall and at the White House.

   He performed the theme song to The Andy Griffith Show. 

Birth and Death Data: Born 1909, Died December 11, 1984

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1929 - 1960

Roles Represented in DAHR: whistling

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 36 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Brunswick TM4030 10-in. 8/12/1929 Indian love call Fred Lowery Whistling solo vocalist, whistling  
Decca 86866 10/5/1954 Theme from The Lost Hour Alfredo Antonini Orchestra vocalist, whistling  
Decca 86867 10/5/1954 Give me your heart Alfredo Antonini Orchestra vocalist, whistling  
Decca 86868 10/5/1954 Ballade de ballet Alfredo Antonini Orchestra vocalist, whistling  
Decca 86869 10/5/1954 Why reach for the moon Alfredo Antonini Orchestra vocalist, whistling  
Decca 87678 4/7/1955 My little mule-1 Alfredo Antonini Orchestra vocalist, whistling  
Decca 100106 6/19/1956 [Unknown title(s)] Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca 100107 6/19/1956 Theme from The Proud Ones Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca 100108 6/19/1956 [Unknown title(s)] Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca 100109 6/19/1956 Whistler's Daddy Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca 105728 9/29/1958 Heartaches Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca 105729 9/29/1958 Whistlin' Joe Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9566 11/14/1956 Sentimental journey Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9567 11/14/1956 The lonesome road Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9568 11/14/1956 The moon of Manakoora Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9569 11/14/1956 Pagan love song Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9570 11/14/1956 Tennessee waltz Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9571 11/14/1956 Moon love Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9572 11/14/1956 Happy hobo Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9573 11/14/1956 Walking along Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9574 11/14/1956 Indian love call Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9575 11/14/1956 Sleepy lagoon Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9576 11/14/1956 Sunrise serenade Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 9577 11/14/1956 Far away places Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
Decca NA 11039 3/26/1960 Easy goin' Fred Lowery vocalist, whistling  
(Results 1-25 of 36 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Lowery, Fred," accessed January 24, 2022, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/328324.

Lowery, Fred. (2022). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved January 24, 2022, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/328324.

"Lowery, Fred." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2022. Web. 24 January 2022.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/328324

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