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Biography

Jump to: Overview (3) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trade Mark (1) | Trivia (8)

Overview (3)

Date of Birth 17 September 1904Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Date of Death 21 November 1986Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA  (kidney disease)
Birth NameGerardo Luigi Colonna

Mini Bio (1)

Comedian, composer, songwriter ("At Dusk", "I Came to Say Goodbye"), author and trombonist, educated in high school, then a trombonist with the Columbia Symphony (1931-1936). He was a member of the Bob Hope radio program, and appears in many films. Joining ASCAP in 1956, his other songs include "Life of a Sailor", "Sleighbells in the Sky", "Take Your Time", and "One Day".

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Hup234!

Spouse (1)

Florence Purcell (1930 - 1986) (his death) (1 child)

Trade Mark (1)

Exaggerated handlebar mustache, high, piercing tenor voice

Trivia (8)

Biography in: "Who's Who in Comedy" by Ronald L. Smith. Pg. 113-114. New York: Facts on File, 1992. ISBN 0816023387
Brother of Louis Colonna.
Suffered a serious stroke in August 1966 from which he never fully recovered. He spent nearly two years in various hospitals recuperating, including the Motion Picture Country Home in Woodland Hills, California. When he returned to performing it was for Bob Hope in his annual Christmas show in Vietnam but his participation was brief.
Worked with the CBS staff orchestra as a musician. He broke up the other players so much during rehearsals that he started getting jobs doing comic warm-ups on live radio programs.
Extensive work on radio with such stars as Bing Crosby and Fred Allen before his stint with Bob Hope.
After high school graduation from Boston English High, he found a job working as a longshoreman.
Known for his google-eyed roll, facial contortions, and wide, handlebar mustache, the madcap comic always looked like the tenor of a barbershop quartet. His renditions of "Sweet Adeline" and "Down By the Old Millstream" were classics.
He was awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Radio at 1645 Vine Street in Hollywood, California.

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