The Pied Pipers
The Pied Pipers officially joined The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra in January 1940, just before Frank Sinatra, it was the new voicing of the band. Both Sinatra and the Pied Pipers made their recording debut with the Dorsey Orchestra on February 1, 1940.
Much of the success of the Pied Pipers is due to their distinctive modern harmony and phrasing which prompted Paul Weston to state that,” the Pied Pipers were truly ahead of their time.”
In April 1940, the Dorsey Orchestra combined with the historic pairing of Frank Sinatra and the Pied Pipers struck gold with their song ” I’ll Never Smile Again.” It was a hit for 15 weeks and remained on the charts for an additional 25 weeks. This memorable song was the very first hit for Frank and the Pied Pipers. Many more hits followed such as… This Love of Mine, There Are Such Things, Oh, Look at Me Now, Stardust, The One I Love Belongs to Somebody Else, Let’s Get Away From It All and Put Your Dreams Away for Another Day, which later became Sinatra’s theme song.
Sy Oliver was probably one of the most distinguished orchestra-tor’s of the Dorsey era and Big Band Jazz. He wrote many hits for the Pied Pipers, two of which became their signature songs… What Can I Say After I Say I’m Sorry and On the Sunny Side of the Street
The Pied Pipers made several movies during this magical time, including Sinatra’s first, Las Vegas Nights. The other movies followed within the next three years entitled, Ship Ahoy, Dewberry Was a Lady and Reveille with Beverly, featuring the hit song Night and Day.
The Pied Pipers left Dorsey to join Johnny Mercer, he was the greatest lyricist of the day and founder of a new record company in Hollywood, Capital Records. The Pied Pipers were the first artists to sign with Capital Records and collectively made music history by recording their first gold record,” Dream.”
From 1945 to 1946 the Quartet took part in a series of national Theatre tours with Frank Sinatra. They then became a second-billed attraction on Sinatra’s CBS radio show and later were regulars on Sinatra’s TV series, “Your Hit Parade.” Many radio and television appearances followed over the years including Johnny Mercer’s radio show “Chesterfield Music Shop ” which use the Pied Pipers biggest hit “Dream” as the closing theme.
In the mid 1940’s the Pied Pipers won awards from Down Beat Magazine for 7 straight year’s as the best and most popular vocal group of the year. The group was inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2001.