Whistling Down The Wire

Patti Revell is joining Joan Viskant in Pete Long's Sisters Of Swing. They have dates at The Sands in Gainsborough, and hope to bring the show to London early next year. 

Sheena Davis will be playing her last gig with her Group at The 500 Club in December. But the music will live on with Swing Thing, led by her hubby Rob Rickenberg. You can catch the band at C Jam next Tuesday 18 October and Jitterbugs on November 23.

There's a new musical in London. Ducktastic! is the next production from the people who brought you The Play What I Wrote. The choreographer for the new show is none other than Michael Rooney, son of 30s and 40s child star Mickey. Michael has also choreographed a number of pop videos, including Kylie Minogue's Can't Get You Out Of My Head. (Guardian October 17).

Fayard Nicholas was hospitalised last Wednesday 12 October. His wife Katherine said "his colon shut down, and they were going to do a surgery taking away the bad part and put together the good part." Fayard came through the Sunday surgery really well. He's in pain, but they are taking good care of him. Thanks to Rusty Frank for this piece of news.

The Visit Britain Centre is in discussions with next year's London Jazz Festival to help being the event to a wider audience. Social dancer Deborah Rothera, who works for the BVLC is speaking to Serious, the organisers of  the festival, and program notes will be available in the centre.

Robert Austin is branching out into a new venture. Uke Joint is a new night for players and fans of the the Ukulele. It starts on Sunday 13 November at The Music Room (upstairs at O'Neill's, Entrance through pub) 73-77 Euston Road, London NW1. The pub is opposite The British Library, nearest stations St. Pancras, Kings Cross and Euston). Doors open at 6.30pm, performances from 7.30pm - 10.30pm. Bring your own instrument and join in the fun! Admission is £5 or £3 for members and you can get more information on 020 8829 0919.

From Tuesday 1 November, Swing Cats Corner is introducing Rhythm & Blues and Jump Jive of the late 40s and early '50s to their weekly club on the first Tuesday of each month. Details as per the event listing.

Cakes 'n' Wakes

Bass player Jack Lesberg laid down his bow on September 17 at the age of 85. He toured Britain, Australia and Africa with Louis Armstrong's All Stars in 1956, and also worked with Leonard Berstein as a member of The New York City Centre Symphony Orchestra.

Very happy birthday wishes to Savion Glover on 19 November.

Anniversaries for November include Buck Clayton (12 November 1911), One O'Clock Jump co-writer Bennie Moten (11, 1894), composer of St. Louis Blues and many more, W.C. Handy (16, 1873), Tommy Dorsey (19, 1905), Coleman Hawkins (21, 1904), composer Hoagy Carmichael (22, 1899), pianist for Benny Goodman and others Teddy Wilson (24, 1912), legendary stride piano player Willie ‘The Lion’ Smith (25, 1897) and The Duke's arranger Billy Strayhorn, (29, 1915). Wonderful music, and the arrangements are by Glenn Miller's main man, Billy May, born November 10 in 1916.

Dancing away to the sounds of this celestial orchestra are Chuck Green (born 6 November 1918), Dorothy Dandridge (9, 1920), Dick Powell (14, 1904), and often cited as the best female tap dancer of them all, Eleanor Powell (21, 1912). Who better to choreograph them in a nice, small-scale, restrained routine than Busby Berkeley (29, 1895)?

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