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Swing Music Magazine May-June 1936: Signed by Fats Waller

Swing Music Magazine May-June 1936: Signed by Fats Waller


HIBBS, Leonard, [Ed.]; Fats WALLER [Signed].  

Swing Music. May-June 1936

London: Leonard Hibbs, 1936


8vo., publisher’s stapled wrappers, featuring a black and white photograph of Benny Carter to the upper cover; and record advertisements to the lower; pp. [cover], ii, 53-72, iii, [cover]; as issued, with the previous issue ending on p.52; printed in black and white throughout on newspaper-grade paper; containing additional black and white photographs of famous jazz and swing musicians of the day, including Joe Sanders; a little tender, especially so along the spine, which is beginning to split to the upper and lower portions; with some chips and small closed tears to the lower cover; lightly rubbed and browned, in accordance with age; a little rusted around the staples. Provenance: A previous owner, Eddie Dawes, has begun to complete the subscription form on p. iii by writing his name neatly in green ink. 


This issue signed by Fats Waller to the top left-hand corner of the front cover, together with the line ‘Do me a favour! Marry me”, taken from a song written by him the previous year. 


Swing Music was a Jazz publication which began issuing in 1935. Printed by the Blackfriars Press and costing 6d., it began as a monthly magazine, with this being the last to be issued as such before the editor, Leonard Hibbs, turned it into a quarterly publication. Hibbs was a writer, music critic and Jazz enthusiast who had previously founded The Gramophone Record, the first issue of which appeared in October 1933. 


Thomas Wright “Fats” Waller was an incredibly popular American Jazz pianist, composer and singer. Perhaps best known for his early swing composition ‘Ain’t Misbehavin’ (later performed and recorded by Louis Armstrong), he produced over 400 songs during the course of his career, but was sadly very young when he passed away, aged just 39, in 1943. It is reported that over 4000 attended his funeral, and his ashes were later scattered over Harlem from an airplane piloted by an unidentified African-American WWI aviator. His signatures, therefore, are seldom found at all. 


Both publication and signature rare indeed. 

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