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Melksham Probus October meeting

Melksham Probus held its October meeting at the Kings Arms, Melksham on Tuesday 4th October. The talk,  by  Bill King, was titled ‘The Magic and Mystery of Glenn Miller’.                   

The introduction to the talk started by all listening to Pennsylvania 6500, many tapping their feet.

Glenn was born on March 1st 1904 in Idaho. After his school days he went to university but dropped out at 22 years of age. He then learnt how to play the trombone, playing in Speakeasy clubs with local bands. He returned to University in 1930 to learn music. He married in 1931.

His first composition was ‘Moonlight Serenade’, which became his introduction and signature tune. He toured between 1933 and 1934 and in 1936 joined up with Benny Goodman, making records through the 30s. Glenn played mainly in New York casinos, which was followed by two movies both included the tune ‘Chattanooga Choo Choo’, which got him his first Gold Disc.

He joined the American Air Force and came to England in 1942 with his band. They were all Air Force personnel. They toured the Country in East Anglia, also played in the Newbury Corn Exchange and many hospitals for service men.

On 5th December 1944 he flew to France in a small plane, his band went in a larger aircraft. Unfortunately he never arrived, he mysteriously disappeared over the channel and was never seen again. A sad and mysterious way to end such  gifted life that brought joy to so many.

Anyone wanting to know more about Probus please contact Keith Gibbons 01225 705641.