Avis ANDREWS: The Sepia Prima Donna

Billed alternately in the ads as “Sepia Prima Donna”, “The Sepian Nightingale”, “Siren of Songs”, “Songbird of the South”, “Bundle of Blues”, “Popular and petite songbird”, “The aristocrat of song”, “The Broadway Favorite and Singing Sensation”, “Second to Marian Anderson” or “Greatest colored soprano” (sic). Still: if we had to rely on Cab Calloway’s autobiography to find out a little more about this singer who was the canary for the orchestra for more than 7 years, we wouldn’t get very far! The Hi De Ho Blog invistigated and tells you almost everything about a great singer (cousin of the singer and TV star Leslie Uggams) admired then and forgotten today. Read the full story →

August 14, 1945: the night Cab hit Claude Hopkins at the Zanzibar cafe

C'est grâce aux archives dans les journaux américains que j'ai pu trouver cette anecdote étonnante qui voit Cab frapper Claude HOPKINS alors qu'il était sur la scène du Café Zanzibar, un soir d'août 1945... Mais ça n'était pas n'importe quel jour : c'était le 14 août 1945, et quelques minutes avant ou après, la reddition japonaise avait été annoncée à la radio, interrompant le broadcast en cours. Read the full story →

Zanzibar Cafe, New York: home of Cab Calloway

  Cab Calloway spent some quality time at Zanzibar... entire months! Café Zanzibar, "Home of the Stars", was a Broadway theater that opened in 1943 with the aim of succeeding the prestigious Cotton Club which had recently closed.  But Zanzibar brought one notable difference: the black audience was accepted there. This policy greatly contributed to its success both with orchestras and the public. The Hi De Ho Blog tells you everything he knows about the Café Zanzibar. Read the full story →