Imperial Records and Fats Domino
Dave Bartholomew (Amsterdam, 1962)
Two years after they had first met in Houston, Lew Chudd asked Bartholomew to become Imperial's A&R man in New Orleans. Bartholomew produced Imperial's first national hits, "3 x 7 = 21", written by him and recorded by the female singer Jewel King, and "The Fat Man", recorded in December 1949 by a young pianist, Fats Domino
. "The Fat Man"—based on "Junker's Blues", with lyrics rewritten by Bartholomew and Domino—reached number 2 on the R&B chart and eventually sold over one million copies, kicking off Domino's career. Both records featured Bartholomew's band, as did a succession of further hits through the 1950s. Cosimo Matassa said, "Many times I think Fats’ very salvation was Dave being able to be stern enough and rigid enough to insist on things getting done... He was adamant as he could be about the discipline of the players."
Bartholomew left Imperial after a disagreement with Chudd at the end of 1950 and for two years recorded for other labels, including Decca, King and Specialty. Among his recordings at King was "My Ding-a-Ling", which Bartholomew wrote and first recorded in January 1952; the song was later recorded by Chuck Berry
, who had an international hit with it in 1972, although Berry substantially changed the song's arrangement and verses and claimed credit for writing it. While at Specialty, Bartholomew produced Lloyd Price's recording of "Lawdy Miss Clawdy", which featured Domino (uncredited) on piano. The single reached number 1 on the R&B chart in mid-1952.
After that success, Bartholomew returned to Imperial to work again on Domino's recordings, co-writing and producing a series of R&B hits for him. Domino's crossover to the pop chart came in 1955 with "Ain't It a Shame", on which Bartholomew deliberately sought to make Domino's style more appealing to white record buyers. Further hits followed through the late 1950s and early 1960s: "I'm in Love Again" and "Blue Monday" (both in 1956), "I'm Walkin'" (1957), "I'm Gonna Be a Wheel Someday" (1959), "Let the Four Winds Blow" (1961)—all co-written and produced by Bartholomew—and "Blueberry Hill" (1956) and "Walking to New Orleans" (1960), also produced by Bartholomew. Also in 1960, Fats Domino recorded and had a hit with his version of "Country Boy".
Over the same period, Bartholomew also wrote, arranged and produced recordings by many other Imperial artists, including Smiley Lewis (for whom Bartholomew wrote "I Hear You Knocking" and "One Night", both of which were hits and were later recorded by other musicians), the Spiders, Chris Kenner, Earl King, Tommy Ridgley, Robert Parker, T-Bone Walker, Roy Brown, Frankie Ford and Shirley and Lee (who recorded for Aladdin Records and for whom Bartholomew produced "Let the Good Times Roll"). Several of Bartholomew's songs were later covered by other musicians. "Ain't That a Shame" was recorded successfully by Pat Boone; "I Hear You Knocking" was a hit for Gale Storm in the 1950s and Dave Edmunds in the 1970s; "One Night" and "Witchcraft" were hits for Elvis Presley
; and "I'm Walkin'" was a charting hit for Ricky Nelson. On several of his songs, a co-writing credit was given to his wife, Pearl King (sometimes confused in error with musician Earl King).
After Imperial was sold to Liberty Records in Los Angeles in 1963, Bartholomew remained in New Orleans. He worked for Trumpet Records and Mercury Records and then established his own label, Broadmoor Records, in 1967. The label folded the following year, when its distributor, Dover Records, collapsed.
In the 1970s and 1980s, Bartholomew led a traditional Dixieland jazz band in New Orleans, releasing an album, Dave Bartholomew's New Orleans Jazz Band, in 1981. He also took part in Fats Domino's international tours during that period. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, as a nonperformer, in 1991. He released two further albums in the 1990s, Dave Bartholomew and the Maryland Jazz Band (1995) and New Orleans Big Beat (1998), and continued to make occasional appearances with his band at festivals.
He remains a resident of New Orleans.
El contenido de este artículo ha sido extraído de la Wikipedia en inglés bajo licencia Creative Commons.