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Re: [RedHotJazz] Baby Mack / Mary Mack

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  • Howard Rye
    You must be getting very bored with me saying this, Bob, but B&GR separated these two a long time ago. far from their being some doubt whether Baby Mack and
    Message 1 of 3 , Jan 10, 2008
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      You must be getting very bored with me saying this, Bob, but B&GR separated
      these two a long time ago. far from their being some doubt whether Baby Mack
      and Mary Mack were the same person, there is no doubt at all that they are
      not. They are different people.

      Baby Mack was in "Ragtime Sailor Girls" at the Chicago Grand in December
      1924, but if you want absolutely conclusive proof there were two of them, it
      can be found on the bill of the Michigan Theater, Chicago, for the 1931 New
      Year's Eve Midnight Show, which announces "Mary and Baby Mack"

      A slightly more interesting question is whether the Mary Mack who recorded
      with Billy Mack in 1925/6 is the same artist who recorded as a soloist, with
      the State Street Swingers, and as "Mack and Mack" in 1937.

      There is a picture of them in the Chicago Defender of 19 December 1925 and
      in 1927 Billie Mack placed an advert for a cornet player for Mary Mack's
      Merry Makers. So they're real enough. And there is no reason why the 1937
      artist shouldn't be the same person. The repertoire alone establishes the
      presumption that the 1936 Bluebird is the same act.

      We can discount Ernest Virgo's fantasies. To paraphrase a joke of Cardinal
      Newman's he had about as much congnisance of what constituted evidence as
      the Samaritans and Ephesians! In his Document notes David Evans doesn't even
      consider the possibility that the State Street Swingers' Mary Mack is anyone
      other than Mary Mack of Billy and Mary and I can't see any reason to
      consider it either. This doesn't of course mean that Mary Mack was the name
      under which this artist was known to census takers, and there's the rub.

      on 10/1/08 6:03, Prof_Hi_Jinx at prof_hi_jinx@... wrote:

      There has been some doubt whether Baby Mack and Mary Mack were the same
      person.

      Abouty a year ago Linda reported that Baby Mack (who worked with Louis
      Armstrong) was still alive in 1984 when interviewed by Linda and her husband
      Tim.

      Baby Mack's reported history was that she was born in New York in 1898 and
      raised in New Jersey.

      She was reportedly also known as McBride.

      She married Les Hite in the late 1920s and worked with him in the 1930s.

      The 1930 Census duly shows Les in Los Angeles as a Musician with his Own
      Orchestra and lists his wife as Wilhelmina, a singer and dancer. She is
      shown as aged 28, having married at 26, and her birth state is shown as New
      Jersey.

      [So, who was Wilhelmina Jeanmargaret Hite (nee Hynes) who was born in
      Illinois on 10 March 1899 and who died in Los Angeles on 10 May 1947?]

      On the other hand, Mary Mack worked with Billy Mack and was active in
      Chicago in the late 1930s.

      Surely these are two different performers, one based in California in the
      1930s and the other in Illinois then? Ernest Virgo has suggested that Mary
      is a pseudonym for Aletha Dickerson / Robinson.

      Any clarification would be appreciated. Thanks.

      Bob

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      Howard Rye, 20 Coppermill Lane, London, England, E17 7HB
      howard@...
      Tel/FAX: +44 20 8521 1098




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