Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music
(b 21 January 1902, Palestine TX; d 1984) Bandleader, singer. A handsome man with a good voice, in demand because he didn't need special arrangements and could sing in any key. He attended the U. of Texas, fronted various bands, recorded 1929-36 with Ben Pollack, many others; with Duke Ellington as 'Billy Smith' in 1930 on 'Ten Little Miles From Ten-Ten-Tennessee'. One band in the early 1930s included Ray McKinley and Glenn Miller; it broke up when they left. His was the voice dubbed when Monogram tried to make a singing cowboy of John Wayne in 'Singing Sandy' short films c.1933. He appeared in film Palm Springs '36, low-budget Westerns as late as '46, quit showbiz '50 and retired to Texas.