Posts tagged "music"

Legendary Italian actress Gina Lollobrigida and the Platters including Zola Taylor in the 1950s. Photo: Galerie Verdeau. 

The Ikettes - Venetta Fields, Robbie Montgomery and Jessie Smith in New York City circa 1965. The women would later leave Ike Turner and become “The Mirettes.” Yes, that is Ms. Robbie from “Welcome to Sweetie Pie’s” in the middle. Photo by James Kriegsmann/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images. 

The Ikettes - Venetta Fields, Robbie Montgomery and Jessie Smith in New York City circa 1965. The women would later leave Ike Turner and become “The Mirettes.” Yes, that is Ms. Robbie from “Welcome to Sweetie Pie’s” in the middle. Photo by James Kriegsmann/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images. 

My father, Erskine Butterfield, was a musician in Newark, NJ during the 1930s-1950s. He is credited with helping to create what is known as “Cocktail Music.” He had his own weekly radio program atop Bamberger’s Department Store in downtown Newark at WOR radio. One of his guests was a then unknown singer, Miss Lena Horne. He also recorded for the Decca and New Brunswick labels, and was a protege of Willie “The Lion Smith”, because he had a strong left hand; he played and composed Boogie Woogie music.”

I am so pleased and impressed with the submissions to #myVBG! We have beautiful mothers, grandmothers, aunts, family friends and fathers like Jacqueline Butterfield’s father, Erskine Butterfield. Jacqueline’s note and photo of her dad on #myVBG made my “Nichelle’s Picks” page.

I would love to see your family and friends on on #myVBG. Upload your photos at http://myvbg.com/ with her name, city, date/location of photo, a fun VBG-ish fact about her with #myVBG and #vbgbook. I am selecting a few pictures on the “Nichelle’s Picks” page but really, every submission is my “favorite.” Thank you!

The beautiful Whitney Houston (1963-2012) was born 51 years ago today in Newark, New Jersey. This photo was taken in New York City in 1980 during her modeling days. Photo: Doug Vann/Corbis.

The beautiful Whitney Houston (1963-2012) was born 51 years ago today in Newark, New Jersey. This photo was taken in New York City in 1980 during her modeling days. Photo: Doug Vann/Corbis.

One of my favorite iconic shots of all time: Minnie Riperton on the cover of her 1974 album, Perfect Angel. Photo: Barry Feinstein.

One of my favorite iconic shots of all time: Minnie Riperton on the cover of her 1974 album, Perfect Angel. Photo: Barry Feinstein.

"But for a lot of music fans, Marvin was the man. There’s plenty of audio covering his career, from Motown in 1963 (first hit: “Hitch Hike”) to just before he was killed, by his own father, in 1984. Video? That’s another matter. Back then, there was little television exposure for pop artists. The occasional spot on a variety show or Bandstand; later, a Shindig or a Hullaballoo. Gaye dutifully lip-syncs his hits on those and other shows. But he was not a happy to be there. As he told me in 1972, for Rolling Stone: “I got a thing; a psychological hangup about performing live. I don’t think I’ll ever enjoy performing.” Journalist Ben Fong-Torres, pictured here with Marvin Gaye in 1972.

Elisabeth Welch (1904-2003) the American singer who introduced the “Charleston” on Broadway before becoming a superstar in England, photographed by Carl Van Vechten on January 19, 1933. She was the first singer to popularize the classic Cole Porter tune, “Love for Sale” and it would become a signature song in her career. She also introduced “Stormy Weather” to British audiences and would be so beloved there, she remained for the rest of her life. Photo: Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library.