Glen Gray

Glen Gray

Musical Artist
Musical Artist Less

Glen Gray

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<!-- Image with inadequate rationale removed: -->Glen Gray Knoblauch, better known as Glen Gray, (June 7, 1900 &ndash; August 23, 1963, Plymouth, Massachusetts) was a jazz saxophonist and leader of the Casa Loma Orchestra.The Mississippi Rag, "Glen Gray and the Casa Loma Orchestra," George A. Borgman, October 2006, page 1

Gray was born to Lurdie P. and Agnes (Gray) Knoblauch in Metamora, Illinois. His father was a lifelong railroad worker who died when Glen was two years of age. His widowed mother married George H. DeWilde, who was a few years younger than she was.

Gray graduated from Roanoke High School. He is said to have joined the army at seventeen and two years later he was living at home with his family. He was employed as a bill clerk for the railroad. He attended Illinois Wesleyan University but left to work for the Santa Fe Railroad.

In 1927, his Orange Blossoms Band was renamed the Casa Loma Orchestra, after Casa Loma in Toronto, where the band played for eight months. Gray collaborated with the jazz musician Jean Goldkette and with trumpeter/arranger Salvador Camarata. He gave Betty George her first job as a soloist. Ill health forced Gray to retire from touring in 1950. In 1956, he went back into the studio to record the first of what became a series of LPs for Capitol Records, which recreated the sounds of the big band era in stereo.

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