Martha Davis And Spouse / A Tribute To Fats Waller (US, ABC-Paramount, ABC 213) <1958>


Martha Davis And Spouse / A Tribute To Fats Waller (US, ABC-Paramount, ABC 213) <1958>
(Side 1) ABC-213-A
(Side 2) ABC-213-B

Martha Davis、初めて聴きました。最晩年の録音のようです。「ダミ声+美声」ということで1956年のサッチモとエラの録音に影響されたのかと思いましたが、夫婦で長く活動していたようですね。Fats Wallerの代表曲"Ain't Misbehavin'"や"Honeysuckle Rose"は当然ながら入ってます。

Martha Davis (December 14, 1917 – April 6, 1960) was an American singer and pianist whose musical comedy act, "Martha Davis & Spouse", was popular in the late 1940s and 1950s.

Davis was born in Wichita, Kansas, and raised in Chicago, Illinois. By the mid-1930s, she had met and been influenced by Fats Waller, and performed regularly as a singer and pianist in Chicago clubs. In 1939, she met, and later married, bass player Calvin Ponder (October 17, 1917 - December 26, 1970), who went on to play in Earl Hines' band.

In 1948, Davis and Ponder moved to California, and Davis developed her recording career on Jewel Records in Hollywood with a trio including Ponder, Ralph Williams (guitar) and Lee Young (drums). Their cover of Dick Haymes' pop hit "Little White Lies" reached # 11 on the Billboard R&B chart, followed by a duet with Louis Jordan, "Daddy-O" in 1948, which reached #7 on the R&B chart that year.

Davis and Ponder also began performing together on stage, developing a musical and comedy routine as "Martha Davis & Spouse" which played on their physical characteristics (she was large, he was smaller). The act became hugely popular, touring and having a residency at the Blue Angel in New York City. They appeared together in movies including Smart Politics (with Gene Krupa), and in the mid-1950s, variety films Rhythm & Blues Revue, Rock 'n' Roll Revue and Basin Street Revue. Several of their performances were filmed by Snader Telescriptions for video jukeboxes, and they also broadcast on network TV, particularly Garry Moore's CBS show.

In 1957, after a break of several years, they resumed recording for the ABC Paramount label, with whom they cut two LPs. Davis died from cancer in New York in 1960, aged 42, and Ponder died ten years later, aged 53.

ところで、Martha Davisが1960年に癌で42歳で、Fats Wallerが肺炎で1953年に39歳で亡くなったって、えらく若いですね。この頃の医療がその程度だったということなのか、それともこの時代の黒人がそういう環境に置かれていたということなのか・・・??フレミングによるペニシリンの発見が1928年、実用化が10年後とのことですので、肺炎で死ぬのは普通のことだったのでしょうか??