Sophie Tucker, original name Sophie Kalish, also called Sophie Abuza, (born Jan. 13, 1884, Russia—died Feb. 9, 1966, New York, N.Y., U.S.), American singer whose 62-year stage career included American burlesque, vaudeville, and nightclub and English music hall appearances.
Born somewhere in Russia as her mother was on her way to join her father in the United States, Sophie Kalish grew up in Boston and then in Hartford, Connecticut, where her mother ran a restaurant. Her father had changed the family name to Abuza after his arrival in the United States. From her childhood she wanted to be an entertainer, and she began by singing in the family restaurant, in part to escape waiting on tables and dishwashing. In 1906 she changed her name to Sophie Tucker and landed a few singing jobs.
Her professional career began in 1906 when, after a successful amateur appearance, she opened in a blackface routine at the old Music Hall in New York City. In 1909 she appeared with the Ziegfeld Follies. Tucker traveled the vaudeville circuits from coast to coast for more than 20 years and also made occasional appearances in England, where she gained a substantial following. Her brassy, flamboyant style, set off by her warm and ample presence, was perfectly suited to both sentimental ballads and risqué songs, and she became a great favourite of audiences. In 1911 she first sang “Some of These Days,” which became her trademark. Tucker’s first appearance at the Palace Theater in New York City, which was considered the summit of success in vaudeville, came in August 1914. It was in 1928, at the Palace, that she was first billed as “The Last of the Red-Hot Mamas.” She also appeared in numerous editions of Earl Carroll’s Vanities and the Shuberts’ Gaieties and in such shows as Louisiana Lou (1911), Round in Fifty in London (1922), Charlot’s Revue (1925), with Gertrude Lawrence, and Cole Porter’s hit Leave It to Me (1938). For a time in the 1920s she operated her own New York club, Sophie Tucker’s Playground.
In the early 1930s, when vaudeville was beginning to seem passé, Tucker turned to nightclubs, while many of her fellow vaudevillians either attempted the movies or slid into oblivion. She made several films, including Honky Tonk (1929), Broadway Melody of 1937 (1937), and Follow the Boys (1944), but she preferred live audiences, and she played to them with great success for more than 30 years. She also made occasional television appearances, mainly on The Ed Sullivan Show, during the 1950s and early ’60s, and she was an active performer until 1965. Her autobiography, Some of These Days, was published in 1945. (britannica.com)
And her´s a very special album by Sophie Tucker. Sophie Tucker tells stories about love and life:
Mother Sophie came to us, speaking words of wisdom ….
Sophie Tucker was accompanied by Ted Shapiro:
Ted Shapiro (October 31, 1899 – May 26, 1980) was a United States popular music composer, pianist, and sheet music publisher.
Shapiro was born in New York City. He became a Tin Pan Alley songwriter and accompanied notable star vaudeville singers of the day, including Nora Bayes and Eva Tanguay. In 1921 he was hired as accompanist and music director for Sophie Tucker. Shapiro worked with Tucker for the rest of her life, appearing at the piano on stage with her, exchanging banter and wisecracks between songs. Shapiro also wrote a number of songs for Tucker.
Ted Shapiro became a member of ASCAP in 1924. His biggest hits were the holiday standard “Winter Weather” from 1941, and “If I Had You”, first published in 1928, which continues to be covered by new recording artists and used in movie soundtracks into the 21st century. His other successful tunes and songs include “He’s Home for a Little While”, “A Handful of Stars”, “To You”, written with Tommy Dorsey and Benny Davis, “Far Away Island”, “Sitting in the Sand A-Sunnin'”, “Now I’m In Love”, “”You’ll Be Reminded of Me”, “Starlight Souvenirs”, “This is No Dream”, “Dog on the Piano”, “Puttin’ On the Dog”, “Waitin’ for Katy”, and “Ask Anyone in Love”.
Ted Shapiro was one of at least three children of Joseph and Jennie Shapiro. His parents were Jewish immigrants from Kovno, Russia (now Kaunas, Lithuania). He was married twice, the first time being to Joan Max of Miami, FL and the second to Susan Seippel Shapiro.
Some of his songs were written in collaboration with his wife Susan Shapiro (b. November 4, 1923), an accomplished jewelry designer, who owned and operated a store called Trifles and Treasures on Kane Concourse in Bay Harbor Islands, Florida. Ted adopted Susan’s three children: John, Lynn and Jennifer. John and Lynn are Susan’s biological children, while Jennifer was adopted. He was loved and adored by them.
Ted Shapiro died at age 80 in Bay Harbor, Florida. (by wikipedia)
This is an really impessive album recorded by an old Lady with a lot of experiences in her life.
Sophie Tucker (vocals)
Ted Shapiro Orchestra
01. Take A Look At Yourself (Maurzda/Montgomery) 4.48
02. Be As Big As The World You Live In (Maurzda/Studer) 4.17
03. Open Your Heart, Open Your Mind (Maurzda/Bailey) 4.55
04. With Your Life You Can Do What You Will (Maurzda/Montgomery) 4.16
05. I’m Bigger And Better Than Ever (Maurzda/Shapiro) 2.33
06. Love Is My One Bad Habit (Maurzda/Shapiro) 3.22
07. The Fountain Of Youth (Maurzda/Studer) 4.14
08. I’m As Modern As Tomorrow And As Old As Yesterday (Maurzda/Montgomery) 3.50
09. Sophie’s Matrimonial Mart (Maurzda/Studer) 5.55