Thursday, September 15, 2011

"I never have any problem getting enthusiastic with a good song and a good band"

Waylon Jennings, originally from Littlefield Texas, said this . . .  who knows when. But I wanted a good Texas quote to accompany this photo of the Cabanatuan Orchestra taken sometime after 1942, photographer unknown.

Based on Chuck Kaelin's letter to my D-day, I can tell you the names of some of these fine musicians: Johnny Katz, Director; Fran Boyer, Arranger; "Pappy" Harris and Eddie Booth, Pianists; Darnell "Red" Kadolph, Drums; Larry Parcher and Martin "Si" Silas, Trumpets; Kenny Marshal, Sax; Clare Kuncl, Trombone; Mel Reinhart, Boyce Strickland, and Chet McClure, Guitars; Louie Bauer, Miles Mahnke, Hank Rule, and Chuck Kaelin, Vocalists.

Evidently, the musicians hummed, whistled, or sang any bits of songs they knew, while Fran Boyer captured it on paper. Greats, such as The Dorsey Brothers, Debussy, Wagner, Benny Goodman, and Glen Miller "appeared" on a regular basis. Also included were excerpts from Porgy & Bess and Rhapsody in Blue.

Second trumpet from the left looks exactly like I remember my Grandfather and I had always imagined it was him, and while Chuck's document would have me believe otherwise, I'd still like to think that he picked up a trumpet one day and blew.

1 comment:

  1. From Chris Schaefer: Awesome, Scottie. So few people know anything about this aspect of prisoner life--and several former POWs I interviewed remembered your grandfather and all of his work and efforts to put this together, to try to keep up some semblance of morale among these men.