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 Clyde Lee McCoy

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Clyde Lee McCoy Famous memorial

Birth
Ashland, Boyd County, Kentucky, USA
Death
11 Jun 1990 (aged 86)
Memphis, Shelby County, Tennessee, USA
Burial
Memphis, Shelby County, Tennessee, USA
Plot
Mausoleum, inside toward the back
Memorial ID
17682755 View Source

Musician, composer, Big Band leader. He first recorded his signature tune "Sugar Blues" in 1931. Toured extensively during his long career; considered a lasting part of the history of the Drake Hotel in Chicago and the Peabody Hotel in Memphis. Also remembered for his World War II service when his entire band enlisted en masse. All served in the Navy and the band toured naval bases and hospitals during the war based in Millington, Tennessee. In the 1920s he developed a trumpet mute that made a "wah-wah" sound which became famous. Once perfected, he patented it. His signature style used making his trumpet talk and cough in ways that were much imitated. A member of the Kentucky McCoy family involved in the infamous Hatfield and McCoy feud, he moved to Portsmouth, Ohio, with his parents in 1912, where he learned to play the trumpet. He assembled his first band in 1920 which was to play for two weeks in Knoxville, Tennessee, and stayed for two months. Working his way toward New York, he found steady employment but not fame. After some years in Los Angeles and on tour he perfected his unique trumpet style. "Sugar Blues" fame and recording contracts followed. His big band style was laced with Dixieland and was popular throughout the war years. After the war he married Maxine Means, one of the Bennett Sisters who had been vocalists with his band, on January 20, 1945. He was known as a gentlemanly band leader and show director and also for his generosity to those in need. His band continued to be popular until the mid-1950s and even after the big bands completely disappeared he performed with smaller groups for another two decades. In the late 1970s he semi-retired to Memphis, Tennessee. He taught music and continued to perform until the mid-1980s, working with small Dixieland combos. His last performance was in 1985. Other well-known tunes are: "Readin', Ritin', Rhythm", "It Looks Like Love"' "Creole Love Call", "Wah-Wah Lament", "Tear It Down".

Musician, composer, Big Band leader. He first recorded his signature tune "Sugar Blues" in 1931. Toured extensively during his long career; considered a lasting part of the history of the Drake Hotel in Chicago and the Peabody Hotel in Memphis. Also remembered for his World War II service when his entire band enlisted en masse. All served in the Navy and the band toured naval bases and hospitals during the war based in Millington, Tennessee. In the 1920s he developed a trumpet mute that made a "wah-wah" sound which became famous. Once perfected, he patented it. His signature style used making his trumpet talk and cough in ways that were much imitated. A member of the Kentucky McCoy family involved in the infamous Hatfield and McCoy feud, he moved to Portsmouth, Ohio, with his parents in 1912, where he learned to play the trumpet. He assembled his first band in 1920 which was to play for two weeks in Knoxville, Tennessee, and stayed for two months. Working his way toward New York, he found steady employment but not fame. After some years in Los Angeles and on tour he perfected his unique trumpet style. "Sugar Blues" fame and recording contracts followed. His big band style was laced with Dixieland and was popular throughout the war years. After the war he married Maxine Means, one of the Bennett Sisters who had been vocalists with his band, on January 20, 1945. He was known as a gentlemanly band leader and show director and also for his generosity to those in need. His band continued to be popular until the mid-1950s and even after the big bands completely disappeared he performed with smaller groups for another two decades. In the late 1970s he semi-retired to Memphis, Tennessee. He taught music and continued to perform until the mid-1980s, working with small Dixieland combos. His last performance was in 1985. Other well-known tunes are: "Readin', Ritin', Rhythm", "It Looks Like Love"' "Creole Love Call", "Wah-Wah Lament", "Tear It Down".

Bio by: Vincent Astor


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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: Vincent Astor
  • Added: 25 Jan 2007
  • Find a Grave Memorial ID: 17682755
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/17682755/clyde-lee-mccoy: accessed ), memorial page for Clyde Lee McCoy (29 Dec 1903–11 Jun 1990), Find a Grave Memorial ID 17682755, citing Memorial Park Cemetery, Memphis, Shelby County, Tennessee, USA; Maintained by Find a Grave .