Leo Reisman

Picture of Leo Reisman

Leo Reisman led a very successful band in the 1920's and 1930's.  He was also a pretty good violinist. He became famous for having over 80 hits on the charts during his career.  Reisman started recording in 1921.  Think about that! He started recording about 100 years ago and here I am writing an article about him and still playing his music in 2020.

Leo Reisman recorded for Columbia exclusively through most of the 1920's and then bounced back and forth between Victor and Brunswick.  In the 1930's, Reisman became known for recording many lesser-known Broadway songs, some of which were recorded by no other band. He bands were always prominent and he recorded prolifically.

Reisman regularly featured Broadway performers as band vocalists, including names like Harold Arlen and Fred Astaire.  A notable recording from this era was "Happy Days Are Here Again."

Listen to "Night and Day" by Leo Reisman (Fred Astaire on Vocals)

Overall, his most popular hits were his #1 recordings of "Night and Day," "The Continental," and "Cheek to Cheek."

Reisman's Orchestra was primarily a dance orchestra. He was not the biggest fan of jazz music, but some of his early recordings were a bit improvisational and "hot".

Eddy Duchin was a member of Leo Reisman's orchestra; it was Reisman who gave Duchin his big break.  Mitch Miller was also a member of his Orchestra for a time.

Leo Reisman died in 1961, at the age of 64.

You can hear Leo Reisman right here on Swing City Radio.

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