Harry Moses Simeone
(May 9, 1911, Newark, New Jersey
- February 22, 2005, New York City
, United States
) was a distinguished music arranger, conductor and composer, best known for arranging the famous Christmas
song "The Little Drummer Boy
", for which he received co-writing credit.
Harry grew up listening to stars performing at the Metropolitan Opera
in New York City, not far from his native Newark, New Jersey
. Initiated and inspired by this childhood passion, he sought a career as a concert pianist. To this end, he enrolled in the Juilliard School of Music
, which he attended for three years. But when he was offered work at CBS
as an arranger for bandleader Fred Waring
, he dropped out of Juilliard to accept it.
After garnering vocal and music arrangement credits for the 1938 RKO
motion picture Radio City Revels,
Simeone relocated to Hollywood with his wife Margaret McCravy
, who was Benny Goodman
's first singer using the stage name Margaret McCrae
, and later a Fred Waring vocalist. Once there, he had various music production jobs for several Paramount
films between 1939 and 1946, including some that starred Bing Crosby
. Sometime in 1948, Simeone joined NBC
's The Swift Show
as the program's orchestra leader, and during 1952, he joined NBC's The Firestone Hour
as conductor and choral arranger.
"The Little Drummer Boy"
When the Twentieth-Century Fox Records label
contracted Simeone to make a Christmas album in 1958, he... Read More