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Paul Mertz

A figure in jazz history, Paul Mertz performed with many magical titles in the 1920s. Mertz started playing expertly in 1918 as an adolescent, operating locally. He toured using the Dorsey Brothers’ Crazy Canaries in 1922, performed and organized for Jean Goldkette’s numerous orchestra from 1923-27, published for Crimson Nichols, and documented with Bix Beiderbecke in 1925 and Frankie Trumbauer in 1927. Mertz also caused Fred Waring’s Pennsylvanians from 1927-29 (when that orchestra was jazz-oriented) and experienced another stint with Goldkette in 1929. Nevertheless, after he relocated to Hollywood in 1929, Mertz became an arranger for Paramount and published for the films. Other than a limited period when he came back to NY in the first 1930s (dealing with Irving Aaronson’s Commanders, Nichols and Horace Heidt), Mertz — who completely moved to LA in 1933 — spent the others of his profession composing and organizing film music, especially for Paramount, Columbia and MGM. In 1941, one of is own songs, “I’m Pleased THERE IS CERTAINLY You,” became a typical. In old age, Mertz (who by no means led an archive program of his personal) was frequently honored at Beiderbecke reunion and tribute concerts among the last survivors from the Beiderbecke years.

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