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Catalog Data

Edward Jean Steichen, 27 Mar 1879 - 25 Mar 1973  Search this
Rudy Vallee, 28 Jul 1901 - 3 Jul 1986  Search this
Gelatin silver print
Image: 19.3 x 24.2 cm (7 5/8 x 9 1/2")
Sheet: 20.1 x 25.3 cm (7 15/16 x 9 15/16")
Mat (Vertical): 55.9 x 40.6 cm (22 x 16")
c. 1929
Exhibition Label:
By his own admission, crooning idol Rudy Vallee "never had much of a voice," but that did not stop him from becoming one of the nation's most popular performers. A self-taught saxophonist, Vallee formed a dance band in 1925 while working his way through Yale. He kept the ensemble intact after graduation, and soon Vallee and his Connecticut Yankees were playing to wildly enthusiastic crowds at New York's Heigh-Ho Club. After a highly successful radio debut in 1928, Vallee and his band catapulted to stardom as the featured performers on NBC radio's "Fleischmann Hour" (1929-36)-the program credited with introducing the variety show format to the airwaves. By the time his career ebbed in the 1940s, Vallee, his trademark megaphone, and twangy rendition of his signature song, "My Time Is Your Time," had become emblems of an entire era in American popular music.
Equipment\Sound Devices\Microphone  Search this
Interior\Studio  Search this
Equipment\Smoking Implements\Cigarette  Search this
Music\Musical instrument\Guitar  Search this
Music\Musical instrument\Violin  Search this
Music\Musical instrument\Saxophone  Search this
Music\Musical instrument\Drum  Search this
Music\Musical instrument\Bass  Search this
Rudy Vallee: Male  Search this
Rudy Vallee: Performing Arts\Performer\Actor  Search this
Rudy Vallee: Performing Arts\Performer\Musician\Singer  Search this
Rudy Vallee: Performing Arts\Performer\Musician\Horn\Saxophonist  Search this
Portrait  Search this
Credit Line:
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
Object number:
Restrictions & Rights:
© The Estate of Edward Steichen / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, NY
See more items in:
National Portrait Gallery Collection
Data Source:
National Portrait Gallery