Birth, Death and Family Record:
Harold Wayne King was born February 18, 1901 in Savanna, Illinois at 600 Bowen Street.
Doctor Joseph Schreiter of Savanna delivered the fourth son of Harvey and Ida Smith King. Waynes brothers were Chester, Fay
and Lyle. Wayne and his brothers were the fourth generation of their family to live in Carroll County, Illinois. Their grandfather
William was born in Pennsylvania but came to Illinois as a child when his father Daniel King moved the family to Carroll County,
Illinois in 1869. Tragedy struck the family when Waynes mother Ida died in 1908. Three of Daniel King's children, siblings
to Wayne's father Harvey King, are buried in the Mount Carroll cemetery. Wayne's Aunt Minnie Smith Seitzburg (sister
to Ida), with whom he lived off and on during his childhood years, died June 23, 1967 and is buried in the SW 1/4 lot
101 blk 4 in what's referred to as the new cemetary portion of the cemetary across from the old Chestnut Park School
in Savanna. Wayne's Uncle Charles Seitzburg with whom Wayne and his brothers played in the Savanna Band and King Brothers
Jazzbo Jazzers died Sept. 14, 1952. Charles and Minnie Seitzburg lived at 23 Diagnol when Wayne was still a child and
then at 740 N. 4th Street when Wayne was in the early part of his musical career in the early 1920's. Wayne King died
July 16, 1985 in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Marriage and Children:
Wayne King married silent film actress Dorothy Janis
(Dorothy Penelope Jones) on March 21, 1932. The beautiful Dorothy Janis starred in The Pagan with Ramon Navarro. Wayne and
Dorothy had two children, daughter Penelope (Penny) and son Wayne King. As of 1981, they had 6 grandchildren. Wayne King composed
the song "Pretty Penny" for his daughter.
Wayne King was educated in Savanna, Illinois having
graduated with the class of 1920 from Savanna Township High School. Wayne and his brothers lived at the Masonic orphanage
in Davenport for a period in about 1909 because their father traveled extensively with his railroad job after the mother Ida
died in 1908. In about 1910 and 1911, Wayne attended school in El Paso, Texas when his father moved his new wife and the children
to El Paso. In about 1911, Wayne returned to Savanna to live with his Aunt Minnie King Seitzburg and her husband Charles on
north Fourth Street. After high school graduation in 1920, Wayne pursued a business major at Valparaisio University in Indiana
but left after his sophomore year to pursue his musical career.
High School Activities:
An October, 1924, Savanna
Times Journal newspaper article describes Wayne King and some other 1920 Savanna Township High School graduates returning
to put on an aerial passing attack against the 1924 football team. Wayne was the quarterback (sometimes fullback) and
captain of the 1919 football squad at Savanna Township High School. 1919 was the first official year of high school
football for Savanna, and Wayne intercepted a pass returning to score the team's first ever touchdown. At the county
track meet he threw a baseball 310 feet, threw the discus, and competed in the shot put, the broad jump, and ran the fifty
and hundred yard dashes. Soon after high school, Wayne signed for fifteen dollars a week to play half back with the Canton,
Ohio Bulldogs, a professional football team. However, it was one of several early jobs that he quit to return to playing music.
Wayne also played the lead role in the senior play at Savanna Township High School.
King and Orchestra opened the new Aragon Ballroom in 1927. Awarded the Radio Guide Trophy as radios most popular dance orchestra
7 consecutive years 1934-1940. Voted Americas favorite dance band by eighty-five percent of respondents to Radio Guide for
fifteen consecutive weeks. Received twice as many votes as the second dance band. Chosen as the best musical show on television
by The Chicago Federation of Advertising Clubs, 1950 and 1951. In 1938, Wayne King was made an honorary alumnus of Northwestern
University. Wayne King and Orchestra played at the Inaugural Ball for President Eisenhower in January, 1953. A memorial to
the Waltz King at Valparaiso University features one of Wayne Kings saxophones. In 1951, Waynes hometown of Savanna renamed
the street that parallels the Mississippi River at Marquette Park as Wayne King Drive. In 1964 Wayne was invited for the closing
three days of the Aragon Ballroom during which 20,000 fans came. Near Old Mill Park at the east end of Savanna, a historical
marker is carefully placed in honor of Savannas native son Wayne King. The University of Arizona, Phoenix keeps a section
on Wayne King which houses his personal library placed in its care through Waynes will.
and entered U.S. Army on August 25, 1942 at age 41; made captain, Army Specialists Corps as music officer; made captain U.S.
Army December, 1942; Appointed aide of de camp to General Aurand, 6th Service Command; Appointed department director, public
relations, general staff corps, 6th Service Command, February, 1943; advanced to rank of major, June, 1943;cDischarged October,
Savanna Township Band: 1912 Wayne King at age 11 played clarinet in the Savanna Band with
his brothers Chester and Lyle. Other known band members were his Uncle Charles Seitzburg, Bill Tyler, Boyd Law, Irvin Benedict,
Walter Bahwell, Bert Fuller, August Handel, Dan Holland, Harley Booth, J.B. Wallace and Ives Law. Wayne King was the youngest
King Brothers Jazz Orchestra:
circa 1915 Chester King, tuba; Lyle and Wayne King, clarinet; Lyle
directed the band. Sidemen were Speedy Greenleaf, banjo and cello; Gertrude Bahwell (Mrs. Chester King), piano; Rhene B. Law,
Ben Eldridge and Lawrence Morse, drums; August Weise of Sabula, trombone; Blanche Altenbern Lantau, formerly of Lanark, piano
at the Pulford Opera House in Savanna.
Various unidentified orchestras up and down the Mississippi River from Davenport,
Iowa to Dubuque, Iowa including jobs with orchestras on the riverboats.
The Weber Orchestra, Galena, Illinois: (sometime
The Tim Sheehan Orchestra, Clinton, Iowa: (sometime between 1916-1922
might have led this orchestra when Tim Sheehan was ill.)
Led an unidentified college orchestra while attending Valparaiso
University circa 1920-1922.
Benson Brothers Orchestra: circa 1920-1922 at the Morrison Hotel helped pay his expenses
while attending Valparaiso University.
Tivoli Theatre Orchestra, Chicago: circa 1922-23: First clarinetist and assistant
Albert E. Short & His Tivoli Syncopators: Made first recording as a sidemen of Albert Shorts orchestra,
Vocalion label March & July, 1923.
The Paul Whiteman Orchestra, Chicago: about 1924
Dell Lampe Orchestra, Trianon Ballroom House Band: recorded as sideman with the Del Lampe Orchestra, Autograph Label, January,
1925. While serving as featured saxophonist in the Dell Lampe Orchestra, Wayne King became rated as one of the best Jazz saxophonists
Wayne King and Orchestra, 1927, opened the Chicago Aragon Ballroom, disbanded 1942. Violinist Herbert
Miska was an original member of the orchestra and remained with Wayne King until disbanding in 1983. Noted composer and arranger
J. Boldwalk Lampe, father of Dell Lampe, asked Wayne King to lead an orchestra at the newly built Aragon Ballroom in Chicago
in 1927. The Aragon was one of the largest ballrooms in the world. Wayne King and Orchestras first recording was To Be Forgotten.
Wayne King and Orchestra, 1946, reorganized after WWII. Vocalist Nancy Evans joined in 1946 at age 17. She remained
with the orchestra until disbanding in 1983.
Wayne King and Orchestra, for Ziv radio series used a 17-piece orchestra.
Vocalists were Nancy Evans and Larry Douglas and two vocals by Wayne King; Sidemen were Trumpeters Jules Herman and William
Hodgson; Trombonist Roger Wilson; Saxophonists/Clarinetists Burke Bibens, John Cameron, James Morash, James Richdards, Wayne
King; Violinists Herbert Miska, George Bay, Jr., Evelyn Davis, A. Lys Al Johnson, Everett Olsen, and Charles Sindeler; Viola
William York; Pianist Paul Mack; Drummer Thomas Summers.
Other sidemen of Wayne King and Orchestra:
Lee Keller, Louis Henderson, Burke Bibens, Andy Hansen, Ernie Birchill, Bill Heller, Paul Mack, Bill Egner, Johnny Kozel,
Roger Wilson, Harry Waidley, Dick Harry, Sugar Harold, G. Belogh, Wayne Barclay, Oscar Koebelke, Herbert Miska, Wayne Alexander,
Art Ellefsen, Ray Bluett, Louis Kastler, Emil Vanda, George Bay, Earl Schwaller, Kenneth La Bohn, Ray Johnson, Jerry Vaughan,
Vocalists with Wayne King and Orchestra:
The Aragon Trio, Elmo Tanner, Charles Farrell, Buddy Clark,
The Barry Sisters, Linda Barrie, Nancy Evans, James Ed Bolton-(last male vocalist).
Drummer Ellis Stukenburg of Chicago
(also owns farm near Leaf River, Illinois) played with Wayne King and Orchestra during the early 1950s NBC Mart television
1979-1983 Wayne King and Orchestra (road band):
Wayne King, alto saxophone; Don Korinek, alto saxophone;
Ted Hess, saxophone; Lloyd Pollitz, tenor saxophone; Billy Hearn, trombone; Roger Kent, 2nd trumpet; Larry Opsahl, 2nd trumpet;
Wally Gordon, drummer; Tasker Day, violin; Herb Miska, violin; Lester Burness, piano; Ed Bolton, vocalist; Nancy Evans, vocalist;
(Herb Miska was the only original sideman left from Wayne Kings 1927 orchestra. Herb in his nineties in 1982 would do two
solos during Goofus and Meditation.)
1979-1983 Some engagements were:
Masonic Temple, Freeport, IL; Willow Brook
Ballroom, Willow Springs, IL; Sabre Room, Hickory Hills, IL; Itaska Country Club, Itaska, IL; Tupperware Auditorium, Orlando,
Songs composed: That Little Boy of Mine; Goofus; Josephine; Beautiful Love; Corn Silk.
Songs partially composed
and arranged: Song of the Islands; The Waltz You Saved For Me;
Note: Song of the Islands was composed with Organist Milton
Charles. Wayne King purchased Emil Flindts 1919 composition Waltz of The Poppies and rearranged its melody. He hired Gus Kahn
(NY), known as the best lyric writer in America, to write the words to The Waltz You Saved For Me.
RCA Victor, Decca, Brunswick.
Note: recorded as a sideman on the Vocalion label March & July 1923; and on the Autograph
label January, 1925.
Preferred Composers of his early career: Victor Herbert and Cole Porter. In 1934, Wayne credited
composer/arranger J. Boldwalk Lampe, father of Del Lampe, as providing a half dozen arrangements that were the best in his
Sponsored radio programs:
Pure Oil, Chicago, 1928; Sanatron Tube, 1929;
Armour Star Ham, 1930; The Lady Esther Serenade, 1931-1937; Cashmere Bouquet, 1939-1942; Ziv, 78 transcribed half-hour programs,
1946-1947 (52 shows in 1946 and 26 shows in 1947). According to the Big Band Almanac also The Wayne King Show for United Drug
Company and The Elgin-American Watch Company Show. Reportedly, another sponsor was Lucky Strikes cigarettes which sponsored
Wayne King and Walter Winchell.
Radio Stations broadcasting Wayne King and Orchestra:
Live broadcast over WGN,
Chicago were made from the Aragon Ballroom. Every Sunday and Monday, in 1934, The Lady Esther Serenade Show was broadcast
over the following Columbia Broadcasting System stations at 9:00 P.M. E.D.S.T: WABC-W2XE, WADC, WOKO, WCAO, CKLW, WOWO, WDRC,
KMBC, WHK, CKLW, WOWO, WDRC, KMBC, WHAS, WCAU-W3XAU, WJAS, WFBL, WSPD, WJSV, KERN, KMJ, KHJ, KOIN, KFBK, KGB, KFRC, KDB, KOL,
KFPY, KWC, KMOX, KVL, KRLD, KLZ, WCCO, WDSU, KSL, WFBM, WIBW, WBNS.
Every Tuesday and Wednesday at 8:30 E.D.S.T. Wayne
King and Orchestra broadcast over the following National Broadcasting Corporation stations: WEAF, WTAG, WJAR, WCSH, WLIT,
WFBR, WRC, WGY, WBEN, WCAE, WTAM, WWJ, WSAI, WKBF, WMAQ, KSD, WOW, WOC, WHO, WDAF, WSM, WKY, WMC, WSMB, WTMJ, WTIC. On Tuesdays,
WFBR and WLIT, were deleted and WFI, KSTP, WSB, WOAI, and WEEI were added.
Television programs and other credits:
The Wayne King Show; NBC, Chicago, Mart TV Studio, 1949-1952; Thesaurus, transcribed many songs 1950-1953; Standard Oil
Show, a favorite guest of the show during the 1950s.
Movie Sound Tracks:
To be added later.
Articles on Wayne King:
Savanna Times Journal, 1970
Savanna Times Journal, April 15, 1971
Savanna Times Journal,
Magazine Articles on Wayne King:
Tower Radio, Volume I, #5, August 1934
Record Research, early 1980s.
Last concert before disbanding:
Wayne King and Orchestra played their last engagement in March 1983 at the Van
Wezel Auditorium in Sarasota Florida.
Wayne King properties:
King Enterprises, Inc. housed in Michigan Avenue
Northern Wisconsin farm, 640 acre, private lake and landing strip and 9 room home.
By 1934, owned and
flew his sixth airplane.
Large farms near Roselle and Ottawa, Illinois.
A suburban Kenilworth residence near Chicago.
A country home in Colorado.
A retirement home in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Stories about Wayne King:
interviews, September, 1999 and April, 2000, Saxophonist Frank "Bud" Riddle of Savanna stated that he remembers Wayne King
as a teenager climbing over the Riddles fence and into his mothers apple tree. Bud claimed that his mother chased Wayne King
out of the apple tree with a broom more than once.
Wayne King was reportedly paid $500 when the Lady Esther Serenade
show began in 1931. Soon, thereafter, this show became so popular that it graduated to one of the most-listened-to radio programs
in America. By 1935, industry articles reported Wayne King to be earning $15,000 per week.
In two interviews in 2000
with drummer Ellis Stukenberg, Leaf River, Illinois who played drums for Wayne King in the 1949-1951 NBC Studio Merchandise
Mart, Ellis stated that Wayne initially became wealthy during the Lady Esther Serenade Show by accepting stock in the brother-sister
cosmetic start-up in lieu of cash.
Wayne Kings last male vocalist, James Edwin Bolton, recently re-told a story conveyed
to him by Wayne King one night on the bus during a road tour in 1982. The story goes like this. Wayne was working for the
Dell Lampe Orchestra at the Trianon Ballroom in Chicago one night when a young fellow about 17 years old asked Dell if he
could get up on the bandstand and play his accordion; Del Lampe said there was no place for that kind of instrument in a dance
and turned him down. Later, during intermission, Dell asked Wayne King what he thought. Wayne told Dell Lampe why dont you
let him get up and play? Give him a chance. The worst thing that can happen is that youll have to ask him to step down, and
then go on with the music. Dell reluctantly agreed and let the boy play his accordion. The audience responded with tremendous
applause. That boy's name was Lawrence Welk.
On January 22, 2001, Richard Law, formerly of Savanna, recalled his step-grandmother
Mrs. Andrew J. Law (Euthalia Hall Hanna Law) talking about Wayne King practicing in her boarding house or one close by. Does
anyone have any idea the address of this boarding house? It was likely in Savanna somewhere.
On January 25, 2001,
a former Savanna resident who now lives in the state of Oregon read about the Wayne King 100th birthday radio broadcasts and
decided to call WCCI. The elderly man stated he owns 80 Wayne King records and that when he was a boy he remembers Wayne King
practicing on North 5th Street in Savanna.
Savanna Times Journal, Wednesday, October 13, 1920:
Wayne King, who is employed in the People's Trust and Savings Bank at Clinton, spent a few days with his relatives here.
Wayne is carrying his arm in a sling, having received a severe wrench while playing football a few days ago.
Savanna Times Journal, Wednesday, December 8, 1920:
MASQUE BALL FRIDAY EVENING A BIG SUCCESS:
Sponsored by the Rebekah Lodge, the ball was in the Opera House Friday Evening: The Attendance was good.
All the dancers wore masks and only those in costume were allowed to dance.
The music was furnished by the King Bros. Jazzbo Jazzers, the new local organization. They furnished good music
and were obliged to respond to enchores after each number.
Savanna Times Journal, Tuesday, August 13, 1929, page 1
Wayne King And His Orchestra Please Dancers
Event held by Milwaukee Women's Club last night at the Odd Fellow Hall was well attended. Wayne King and hiis
orchestra, direct from a three year engagement at the Aragon-Trianon ball rooms, Chicago, and KYW radio stars, delighted a
large crowd of dancers and spectators at the Odd Fellows Hall last night.
The dance was sponsored by the MilwaukeeWomen's Club. Almost 200 couples danced, and over 100 additional persons
listened to the music. Visitors were at the dance from Freeport, Clinton, Morrision, Fulton, Thomson, Sabula, Mount
Carroll, Lanark, Chadwick, Hanover and other surrounding places.
Excellent Dance Music
The orchestra started playing at 9 o'clock and continued until 1 A.M. The warm weather did not interfere
with the dancers and everyone remained and reported having had a wonderful time. Wayne King and his orchestra played
some of the best dance music that has ever been heard in Savanna. According to comments today, the numbers were all
good and the singing parts were well taken. The musicians were dressed in striped blue and white flannel trousers and
broadcloth shirts. The director wore a dark coat.
Mr. King is well known in Savanna, having resided here for years. His orchestra is considered one of the best in
Chicago. The orchestra went to Waterloo, Iowa, where they appear tonight, and on Wednesday night will be in Dubuque,
Savanna Times Journal, Friday, Friday January 24, 1930, page 1
Wayne King and Orchestra to be on NBC Network
Will Inaugurate a Series of Weekly Programs on Armour Period
Wayne King and His Aragon Ballroom Orchestr, broadcasting from KYW in Chicago, become NBC network stars Monday, January
27, when they inaugurate a series of weekly programs on the Armour-Menuette Period, according to announcements made in the
The orchestra leader was formerly of Savanna and is well known in the city and community. He attended the city
and high schools here. Mr. King is a nephew of Mrs. Charles Seitzburg of this city and has other relatives here.
Wayne King and His Orchestra have been heard over the air nightly excepting Monday at 10:45 p.m. from KYW. Beginning
next Monday they will be heard at 5:45 p.m. over NBC Network, with WIBO as the Chicago outlet.
Savanna Times-Journal, March 11, 1930, page 1
Wayne King to Marry Dorothy Janis, Famed Motion Picture Star
Announcement has been made of the approaching marriage of Wayne King, well known orchestra leader, in Chicago, to Miss
Dorothy Janis, famous movie star of Hollywood, Calif.
In a recent press dispatch which appeared in Chicago papers it said that Miss Janis would leave Hollywood, Calif. soon
to go to Chicgo, where she was to become the bridge of Wayne King.
Mr King was formerly of Savanna. He is a nephew of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Seitzburg of this city. He attended
the Savanna schools. Mr. King is leader of the famous Aragon orchestra.
Savanna Times Journal, Thursday, August 14, 1930, page 1
Wayne King Orchestra Entertained at Dinner at C. Seitzburg Home
Mr. and Mrs. Charles Seitzburg entertained at a three course dinner for Wayne King and His Orchestra at their home in
North Fourth Street at 6 o'clock last evening.
Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Seitzburg and family and Dr. E.C. Turner were also present.
The Dining room was decorated with garden flowers, with the dining table laid with service for fifteen.
While at this table, the orchestra members entertained Mr. and Mrs. Seitzburg with a number of songs.
Following the dinner, the group drove to Galena, where the orchestra played at the Royal Palais pavilion for a dance
last night. Today they drove to Hartford, Wisconsin, where they will play tonight. Tomorrow night they will appear
Savanna Times Journal, Tuesday, August 12, 1930, page 4
Box ad 6 inches x 8 inches deep:
Wayne King at Lincoln Pavilion, 5 miles east of Sterling, on Lincoln Highway, Friday, August 15, Wayne King
Savanna Times Journal, Tuesday November 25, 1930 page 1
Jazz orchestra of Wayne King is popular as any. Former Savanna man is described by writer as saxaphonic spellbinder.
Wayne King's orchestra is as popular as any in Chicago and adds its share toward saturating Chicago's night air with
grade A jazz music, according to last Sunday's Tribune.
King, a former Savanna boy with a large circle of relatives and friends in this city is described as a saxaphonic spellcaster
by Lorenz Wolter's who comments on Chicago's dance bands, that nightly send out strains of native, naturalized and imported
A number 1 jazz on the ether, in the Tribune. The softness of Wayne's music is in some measure responsible for his sorcery,
but there are other orchestras that play as sweetly. Something about Wayne King himself gets young Chicago.
In the ballroom, girls stop dancing sometimes and cry softly as he draws forth ecstatic music while his forehead wrinkles
up like a tiny storm at sea, and to the thousands who hear him only over the air he suggests all of the pagliaceis of the
Savanna Times Journal Friday December 19, 1930 page1
Pair are congratulated by Wayne King Orchestra. Wayne King and His Orchestra, in the program played Wednesday night
from station KYW, Chicago, played the selection "Melody of Love" in honor of the 40th Wedding Anniversary of Mr. and Mrs.
T.J. Bahwell of this city. Mr. King made the announcement and extended congratulations over the air to Mr. and Mrs.
Savanna Daily Times-Journal, Tuesday, July 28, 1931, page 4
Mr and Mrs. Ernie Derzbog of Chicago, the former coronetist and tenor soloist in Wayne King's orchestra, will arrive
today for visit with Mr. and Mrs. Charles Steitzburg, uncle and aunt of Wayne King.
Savanna Times Journal, Tuesday, March 22, 1932, page 1:
Wayne King takes Dorothy Janis of screen as bride. Left for two-day honeymoon at bridegroom's farm in Wisconsin.
Wayne King, Chicago, famous Waltz King and orchestra leader, formerly of Savanna, married Dorothy Janis,, 20 year old
screen star, a full-blooded Cherokee Indian, on Monday. The ceremony was performed by the Rev. Louis W. Sherwin in Mr.
King's Highland Park home. Immediately after the wedding, the couple left for a two-day honeymoon at Mr. King's farm
near Greenbay, Wisconsin, taking several members of the orchestra along. King and his bride will return to Chicago on
Wednesday. The bridgegroom is well known in Savanna where he resided for many years with his uncle and aunt, Mr. and
Mrs. Charles Seitzburg. He attended the Savanna schools and went to chicago after completing his education. Mr.
King is a nephew of Mrs. Charles Seitzburg, Mrs. Fred E Winston and Roy King. King's orchestra broadcasts over WGN and
plays at the Aragon ball room.
Savanna Times Journal, September 8, 1932, page 1 (courtesy John Hanson of Savanna):
Wayne King Will Sing From Now On: Ability Is Found:
Former Savanna man has returned to mid-western broadcasting channels.
Wayne king, famous orchestra leader, a former Savanna resident, has returned to mid-western broadcasting channels and
the Lade Esther Program every Sunday over WTMJ beginning last weekend.
It has been announced by the managers that King is going to sing from now on. His ability was discovered during
his eastern tour with the orchestra when he visited the recording laboratories at Camden, New Jersey. He was asked to
sing a chorus of "Deep In Your Eyes" and the test record disclosed that he has a good recording and radio voice.
Upon learning of this, his Sunday sponsors insisted that a singing clause be inserted in his new contract. During
the personal appearance tour, he played to 390,000 dancers in 63 cities and towns throughout the United States, which is considered
the season's record for all traveling orchestras. King set his season's mark in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Atthe Modernistic
when he played to more than 11,000 dancers and broadcast over WTMJ. He traveled 18,540 miles.
Savanna Times-Journal, Friday, July 24, 1936, Page 1
Wayne King Picture is in Current Radio Guide
A double picture of Wayne King, formerly of Savanna and known as "The Waltz King" appears in the current issue of Radio
Guide, a weekly radio publication of programs and personalities, for the week ending Aug. 1.
In the picture Wayne is shown with his saxophone.
At the top of the picture is the following:
Playing his first dance engagement in New York since arriving in the front ranks of broadcasting bands, Wayne King is
sweeping Mahatten before him as his smooth melodies cut over the air from the Starlight Roof Garden of New York's exclusive
Hotel Waldorf Astoria. His band stood first in Radio Guide's Star of Stars Poll.
Savanna Times-Journal, Friday, November 6, 1936, page 1
Boyhood Days of Wayne King Given In Radio Guide
First Installment of Serial, "Wayne King's Inspiring Life Story," Appears in Current Issue
Boyhood days in Savanna of Wayne King, the "Waltz King," are described in this week's issue of Radio Guide under the
title of "Wayne King's Inspiring Life Story," written by (first name inlegible) Kerr.
The writer was in Savanna early last summer interviewing relatives, friends, and associates in preparation for writing
Amonthe the pictures in the Radio Guide with the installment are on of Wayne King as he is today. Wayne
at age of 13 years in a picture of the Savanna band, the frame house at the northeast corner of Sixth Street and Bowen Streets
where Wayne King was born. Wayne was captain-quarterback in a picture of the 1919 Savanna high football team squad and
Wayne in a late picture with George Olson and Ben Bernie.
The King family at the time of Wayne's birth, Feb. 16, 1901 was liviing in Savanna, the article states, but
Wayne's mother died when was five years old. Some time later after the death of the mother Wayne and his brothers were
given a home with the aunt, Mrs. Minnie Seitzburg.
Learning to play the clarinet at an early age Wayne was a member of the Savanna town band at the age of 11
years, according the article.
It was through their uncle who was bass drummer that Wayne and two of his brothers, Lyle and Fay, were permitted
to join the band. Wayne and Lyle played clarinets and Fay the big bass horn. The three King brothers had regulation
It used to take a lot of laundering to keep those uniform clean for the boys," Mrs. Seitzburg is quoted
in the article as saying, "but they were so proud of them I felt it was worth it."
"And indeed it must have been,",the article continues, "for the number of photgraphs on her walls affectionately
inscribed "To Aunt Minnie With Love from Wayne," attest to the fact that the little boy in the band who grew up to be a band
leader hasn't forgotten the ... "auntie-mother" whose house ... the three lonely youngsters with no real home of their
When Wayne's father married again and moved to El Paso, Tex., Wayne and Lyle went along, the article states,
but Chester and Fay were somewhere else. Wayne soon was hard at work at odd jobs to earn money with which to return
Daytimes, he went to school. At night he worked in a garage. An odd job here, an errand there.
As he grew older, he went to night school. Like many musicians he found that his sensitive hands had a feel for engines.
Clintonion Two Step, by Emil H. Flindt, published 1914 by Hans Thompson, 330 Maple Avenue, Clinton, Iowa, Director Clinton
Citizen's Band, sideman Wayne King circa 1918-1920
Wayne King Show NBC Television Studio Mart, Chicago 1949-1951
Courtesy of Prairie Advocate News, "Please Don't Quote Me..." by Caralee Aschenbrenner
Wayne King Article, Sept. 15, 1999
Wayne King Article, Sept. 22, 1999
The Project possesses 30 photos of WAYNE KING AND ORCHESTRA with Vocalists Nancy Evans and Ed Bolton were taken in
1981 and 1982 while on tour in Wisconsin, Illinois and Florida. March 13, 2004 in the process of moving photos
of the Wayne King Orchestra to a dedicated photo page.
Wisconsin: Eagles Club in Milwaukee
Illinois: Willow Grove
Ballroom in Willow Springs
Florida: Tupperware Auditorium in Orlando; Court of Flags Hotel in Orlando; Auditorium in LeHigh
The 1979-1983 orchestra included two originals from the 1927 Aragon debut of Wayne King and Orchestra: Violinist
Herb Miska and the "Waltz King" himself.
Vocalist Nancy Evans joined Wayne King at age 17 in 1946 when Wayne reorganized
his band after serving 3 years in the U.S. Army during WWII.
Vocalist Ed Bolton was Wayne King's last male vocalist
having joined the band in 1979, touring through to Wayne's retirement tour in Florida in 1983. Violinist Tasker Day was responsible
for Wayne discovering his last new vocal star, ED BOLTON. Wayne once told Ed Bolton, "You have an unusually beautiful singing
voice. If I'd have known about you years ago, I'd have used the hell out of you."
Some orchestra members from 1979
to 1983 were:
Manager/Bus Driver Gail Bruening;
Violinists/(Original 1927 Orchestra Member)Herb Miska and Tasker Day;
Vocalists Nancy Evans of Florida and Ed Bolton of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania;
1st Alto Saxophist and Clarinest
Don Korinek of Omaha, NE
Alto Saxophonist Ed Soellner of Orlando, Florida
Tenor Saxophonist Lloyd Pollitz of Davenport,
Larry Opsohl of Florida , Tenor Saxophonist and Bass Clarinetist Lou Virvo;
Trombonist Billy Hearn of Waco,
Texas, 1st Trumpeter Leo Ortyl, Bass Fiddler Wally Shrumpf, Unknown Trumpter from Albuquerque;
Drummers Jimmy Featherstone
and Wally Gordon