Bandleader Jones of 1920s-30s / SUN 2-6-11 / Island near Quemoy / TV Guide's Pennsylvania headquarters / Nine-time world champion rodeo cowboy
Sunday, February 6, 2011
Isham Jones (January 31, 1894 – October 19, 1956) was a United States bandleader, saxophonist, bassist and songwriter. [...] From 1929 to 1932, his Brunswick recordings became even more sophisticated with often very unusual arrangements (by Gordon Jenkins and others; Jones was his own arranger early on, but cultivated others for offbeat arrangements). During this period, Jones started featuring violinist Eddie Stone as one of his regular vocalists. Stone had an unusual, almost humorous tone to his voice. His other vocalists included Frank Sylvano, Billy Scott, Arthur Jarrett and Stone beginning in 1929 and in 1932, he added Joe Martin, another of the band's violinists. In April that year, young Bing Crosby recorded two sessions with Jones' group which included "Sweet Georgia Brown". Crosby at this point in his career was still singing in a jazz idiom, transitioning to his better known "crooner" style. // In August 1932, Jones began appearing on Victor, and these records are generally considered among the very best arranged and performed commercial dance band records of the Depression era. Victor's recording technique was especially suited to Jones' band. In October 1932, he teamed up with the Three X Sisters in New York who had just departed from CBS radio. They recorded "experimental" songs for RCA Victor which Jones began to fuse jazz, and early swing music. They recorded Where, I Wonder Where? and What Would Happen To Me If Something Happened To You. His Victor releases had an almost symphonic sound. He stayed with Victor until July 1934, when he signed with Decca. (Jones' recordings during this period rivaled Paul Whiteman and other dance orchestras as examples of the very best and most popular dance music of the era.)
• • •Ha ha, it's funny 'cause she's old and unattractive...
Hey, here's another one: what has two thumbs and doesn't like "jokes?"
You either liked the joke or you didn't. This puzzle obviously wasn't meant for me, but maybe it was meant for you. I accept that this sometimes happens (i.e. that I'm just not the intended audience). That's all I have to say about this theme, except that the answers practically filled themselves in. Once you got past that opening fragment (TO SEE A NEW DOCTOR), you could see every part of the joke coming down Broadway.
Fill was very nice except for one nutso place in the south (which was, coincidentally, the last part of the puzzle I arrived at). ISHAM (108D: Bandleader Jones of the 1920s-'30s) and MATSU that close together felt a little brutal, but crosses ended up being pretty gettable, so I got slowed only slightly. Oh, the TWAY / TY MURRAY part is pretty wicked too (86D: Bob ___, 1986 P.G.A. Player of the Year / 88D: Nine-time world champion rodeo cowboy), if you're not familiar with either name (TWAY was somewhere in my brain, as opposed to Mr. MURRAY, who was nowhere in my brain). Again, crosses were kind, and I ended up with a sub-10-minute time, which is lightning-fast for me.
- 23A: A woman went TO SEE A NEW DOCTOR.
- 31A: In his office, she noticed a DIPLOMA ON THE WALL.
- 42A: She remembered having a high-school crush on a handsome, dark-haired boy with THE SAME NAME.
- 53A: However, this man was balding, gray-haired and JUST AVERAGE-LOOKING.
- 68A: She thought he was much too old to have been her CLASSMATE.
- 79A: Nevertheless, she asked him if he had attended her high school, and after he said yes, she asked "WHEN DID YOU GRADUATE?"
- 92A: He answered "In 1971. But WHY DO YOU ASK?"
- 106A: The woman exclaimed "YOU WERE IN MY CLASS!"
- 118A: He looked at her closely, then asked "WHAT DID YOU TEACH?"
- 26A: Expressionist artist James (ENSOR) — gimme. He's a rather common five-letter artist. "Impressionist" is gonna give you MANET or MONET, probably, but "Expressionist" is a good hint that it's ENSOR.
- "One Mic" rapper (NAS) — never saw the clue; don't think I've seen this NAS clue before. I would commit it to memory, but, honestly, three-letter rappers? There aren't many.
- 105A: 1969 newlywed in the news (ONO) — Coincidentally, "Wedding Bell Blues" was a #1 hit that year (coincidentally, the week I was born).
- 8D: TV Guide's Pennsylvania headquarters (RADNOR) — this is like some bad crossword joke. This is the clue you'd trot out if you were trying to prove how *&$^ing obscure and random crossword clues are.
- 8A: Certain bias (RACISM) — whoa. OK. I'll deflect this one, this way (by request...):
Matt Gaffney is running a special crossword contest from his (very popular) website—here's the message he sent me a couple days ago:
I'm running a special month here at MGWCC ("Matt Gaffney's Weekly Crossword Contest") called "Literary February." Four book-themed puzzles, and *every* solver who answers the four February metapuzzles correctly wins a MGWCC pen, pencil and notepad set.Matt's a fantastic constructor and his metapuzzles add an extra bit of fun to the solving experience. Get in on the action. You'll be glad you did.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
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