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Jose Melis

Most widely known for trading barbs with headliner Jack port Paar throughout a five-year stint while bandleader of NBC’s The Tonight Display, pianist/arranger Jose Melis also lower some Latin-influenced easy hearing recordings. Created Jose Melis Guiu in Havana, Cuba, on Feb 27, 1920, he researched in the Havana Conservatory of Music before carrying on his education in Paris via Cuban authorities scholarship or grant. At 16, he relocated towards the U.S., where he graduated in the Julliard College of Music. While there Melis started moonlighting being a lounge pianist, and during Globe Battle II he offered as musical movie director for the USO’s NEW YORK branch, where he initial met professional/comedian Paar, a lifelong friend. After Globe Battle II Melis gained his U.S. citizenship, staying a fixture of the brand new York Town nightclub picture. When Paar agreed upon to web host a summer replacing series for radio’s The Jack port Benny Present in 1946, he called Melis his musical movie director, a posture the pianist reclaimed for the CBS tv variety display The Jack port Paar Present, which shown from 1953 to 1956. When Paar was called to achieve success Steve Allen as web host from the Tonight Present, Melis was once again in tow. Using the orchestra on-stage (rather than relegated towards the pit) and its own leader regularly included in to the late-night chatter, Melis became a superstar in his have best, composing the show’s theme, “I-M-4-U,” and creating its well-known “telephone video game,” improvising melodies based on audience associates’ telephone numbers. As his reputation grew he agreed upon to the Seeco label for some LPs including Jose Melis at nighttime and THE COUNTLESS Moods of Jose Melis. A following stint with Mercury yielded On Broadway and Tonight, It’s Music. After Paar resigned his hosting responsibilities in 1962, Melis toured behind Mel Tormé and Frank Sinatra, but health issues dogged him and he ultimately lost his view and hearing, dying from respiratory failing in Sun Town, AZ, on Apr 7, 2005.

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