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Bob Crosby
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    (August 23, 1913-March 9, 1993)
    Born in Spokane, Washington
    Birth name was George Robert Crosby
    Younger brother of Harry Lillis ‘Bing’ Crosby
    Vocalist and bandleader
    Led his own big band and a Dixieland octet, the Bob-Cats
    Songs included ‘Big Noise from Winnetka,’ ‘South Rampart Street Parade’ and ‘March of the Bob-Cats’
    Hosted his own variety show on radio (1943-50) and TV (1953-57)
    Replaced Phil Harris as bandleader on ‘The Jack Benny Program’ (1952-55)
    Appeared in the films ‘Let’s Make Music’ (1941), ‘Thousands Cheer’ (1943), The Greatest Show on Earth’ (1952), ‘The Road to Bali’ (1952) and ‘The Five Pennies’ (1960)
    As a singer, he sounded like his brother, but with less of a range.
    An early stint with the Dorsey Brothers Orchestra ended with Tommy telling him, ‘Look, this is the best band in the world. And you ain’t the best Crosby singer.’
    When the members of the Ben Pollock Orchestra quit en masse, he was chosen as the new bandleader in large part because of his famous last name (1935).
    He said about being in his brother’s shadow, ‘It got so bad that whenever someone asked me for my occupation, I used to automatically answer, ‘Bing Crosby’s brother.’’
    His easygoing, humorous personality made him a popular frontman for his band.
    In the late 30s, his band was second only to Benny Goodman’s in popularity.
    During World War II, he spent eighteen months with the Marines, touring with bands in the Pacific.
    He has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, for recordings and TV.

Credit: C. Fishel

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