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Lucky Millinder

He played no instruments, sang no songs, never became a noted composer, but in his own way, a musician of undeniable talent. He put bands together, got the vocalists, the right songs, and presented the entire package. Lucky Millinder was a genuine showman who was very much in the spotlight, while, contributing to the background of Jazz, Blues, Rhythm and Blues and all that followed.

The man who would be nicknamed Lucky was born Lucius Venable Millinder in Anniston, Alabama August 8, 1900, but it was exposure to his folks new home in Chicago that would provide more than luck to Lucky Millinder's musical development. He actually started as the announcer presenting bands in the auditoriums where dances were held, and this led to becoming a dancer and front man in 1931. This was the year when he changed his name from Lucius Venable to Lucky Millinder; and eventually fronted a New York Orchestra in 1932. He allowed himself to be hired around until he took the helm of the Mills Blue Rhythm Band from 1934 until 1938, a very good outfit.

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