Lawrence Welk

Lawrence Welk (March 11, 1903—May 17, 1992) was a musician, accordion player, band leader, and television impresario. He was born in Strasburg, North Dakota to Russian German parents.

His music was conservative, concentrating mostly on pop song standards, polkas, and novelty songs, delivered in a smooth, calming, good-humored easy listening style. His show was warm and family-oriented. His "Champagne Music" has been considered the epitome of "square".

In the 1920s Welk lead a big band played engagments in eastern South Dakota area. His band was the station band for popular radio station WNAX in Yankton, South Dakota. During the 1930s, Welk led a travelling big band, specializing in dance tunes and 'sweet' music. The band performed in many places across the country, particularly in the Chicago area. In the early 1940s the band travelled to California for a six-week engagement at the Avalon Ballroom. This gig turned into a 10 year stint, drawing crowds of nearly 7000 on a regular basis.

In 1952, Welk settled in Los Angeles, California. That same year, he began producing The Lawrence Welk Show on KTLA in Los Angeles. The show was first aired nationally on ABC in 1955.

Welk's television program had a policy to only play well known songs and tunes from previous years, so that the target audience would only hear numbers that they were already familiar with. This strategy proved commercially successful.

Much of the show's appeal was Welk himself. Although born in the United States, he spoke with a slight but notable European accent that many, especially ladies, found to be quite appealing. His TV show was recorded as if it were live and was sometimes quite free-wheeling. Welk often took ladies from the audience for a turn around the dance floor. During one show Welk brought a cameraman out to dance with one of the ladies and took over the camera himself.

The reputation for "corny music" notwithstanding, his musicians were always top quality, including accordionist Myron Floren and New Orleans Dixieland clarinetist Pete Fountain. Welk was noted for spotlighting individual members of his band and show. His band was well-disciplined and had excellent arrangements in all styles. One notable showcase was his album with the noted jazz saxophonist Johnny Hodges. Welk's instrumental cover of the song "Yellow Bird" was a hit.

He was married for over sixty years, until his death, to Fern Renner, who bore him three children. One of his sons ended up marrying fellow Lawrence Welk Show performer Tanya Falan.

Welk's California automobile license plate read A1ANA2, referencing his trademark count-off before each number, "A one, and a two..."

His band continues to appear in a dedicated theater in Branson, Missouri even though Welk is now deceased. A resort community in Escondido, California is named after Welk.

Welk is said to have learned English only when he was already an adult because he always spoke German at home. When he was asked about his ancestry, he replied always with "Alsace-Lorraine, Germany" (although this was totally wrong).

He died from pneumonia in Santa Monica, California at the age of 89, and is buried in Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery in Culver City, California.


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He died from pneumonia in Santa Monica, California at the age of 89, and is buried in Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery in Culver City, California. Publishing dates were acquired from Amazon.com. When he was asked about his ancestry, he replied always with "Alsace-Lorraine, Germany" (although this was totally wrong). NOTE: Most of these books (plus many others) were located at: Amazon.com (http://www.amazon.com). Welk is said to have learned English only when he was already an adult because he always spoke German at home.
. A resort community in Escondido, California is named after Welk. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducted ZZ Top in on March 15, 2004.

His band continues to appear in a dedicated theater in Branson, Missouri even though Welk is now deceased. The band first gained wide attention with their "Tres Hombres" album, which contained the classic song "La Grange", referencing the same bordello that is the subject of "The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas." They reached new heights of popularity with the 1983 album Eliminator, boosted to prominence by music videos for the tracks "Gimme All Your Lovin'", "Legs" and "Sharp Dressed Man" each of which featured a small bright red coupe called The Eliminator (http://www.lowpft.com/FIVE.GIF) and a mysterious trio of beautiful women who travel around helping various people in the videos. Welk's California automobile license plate read A1ANA2, referencing his trademark count-off before each number, "A one, and a two...". (Frank Beard, interestingly, does not wear a beard.) In 1984, the Gillette company offered Gibbons and Hill $1 million apiece to shave their beards for a commercial, but they declined. One of his sons ended up marrying fellow Lawrence Welk Show performer Tanya Falan. Gibbons and Hill are always pictured wearing sunglasses, trenchcoats and their trademark waist-length beards. He was married for over sixty years, until his death, to Fern Renner, who bore him three children. As well as a distinctive guitar sound and hard-driving, innuendo-laced lyrics (many of which are about places and events in their home state of Texas), the band is probably best known for its distinctive look.

Welk's instrumental cover of the song "Yellow Bird" was a hit. The band members are Billy Gibbons (vocals and guitar, of Moving Sidewalks), Dusty Hill (bass, of The American Blues) and Frank Beard (drums, of The Cellar Dwellers, The Hustlers, and The American Blues). One notable showcase was his album with the noted jazz saxophonist Johnny Hodges. ZZ Top is a rock band, most prominent in the 1970s and 1980s, from Houston, Texas. His band was well-disciplined and had excellent arrangements in all styles. In a national phone-in poll conducted during the broadcast, the band won by a significant margin. Welk was noted for spotlighting individual members of his band and show. In a 1984 episode of Saturday Night Live, Father Guido Sarducci "nominated" ZZ Top for the Democratic presidential primary.

The reputation for "corny music" notwithstanding, his musicians were always top quality, including accordionist Myron Floren and New Orleans Dixieland clarinetist Pete Fountain. ZZ Top is a sponsor of the Delta Blues Museum. During one show Welk brought a cameraman out to dance with one of the ladies and took over the camera himself. The band appeared in the film Back to the Future Part III. Welk often took ladies from the audience for a turn around the dance floor. This brothel is also the subject of the film The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas starring Dolly Parton and Burt Reynolds. His TV show was recorded as if it were live and was sometimes quite free-wheeling. The real name of the brothel is "Gracie's Chicken Farm".

Although born in the United States, he spoke with a slight but notable European accent that many, especially ladies, found to be quite appealing. "La Grange" is a song about a brothel. Much of the show's appeal was Welk himself. He fully recovered. This strategy proved commercially successful. In December 1984, Dusty Hill accidentally set off a derringer he kept in his boot and shot himself in the stomach. Welk's television program had a policy to only play well known songs and tunes from previous years, so that the target audience would only hear numbers that they were already familiar with. In 2002, he made that title official and was ordained so he could perform a Dallas wedding.

The show was first aired nationally on ABC in 1955. Billy Gibbons has often been referred to as The Reverend Willy G. That same year, he began producing The Lawrence Welk Show on KTLA in Los Angeles. Sorry, no release date yet.). In 1952, Welk settled in Los Angeles, California. Publisher: Backbeat Books. This gig turned into a 10 year stint, drawing crowds of nearly 7000 on a regular basis. "ZZ Top: Fearless Boogie - The Full 30-Year Story of the Great Texas Trio" (Author: Hugh Gregory.

In the early 1940s the band travelled to California for a six-week engagement at the Avalon Ballroom. "The Best of Zz Top: A Step-By-Step Breakdown of the Guitar Styles and Techniques of Billy Gibbons" (September 1, 2003). The band performed in many places across the country, particularly in the Chicago area. "The Very Best of ZZ Top" (April 1, 2003). During the 1930s, Welk led a travelling big band, specializing in dance tunes and 'sweet' music. "Essential ZZ Top" (April 2003). His band was the station band for popular radio station WNAX in Yankton, South Dakota. "ZZ Top - Guitar Anthology" (February 1, 2003).

In the 1920s Welk lead a big band played engagments in eastern South Dakota area. "ZZ Top / XXX (Authentic Guitar-Tab)" (March 1, 2000). His "Champagne Music" has been considered the epitome of "square". "The New Best of Zz Top for Guitar (Easy Tab Deluxe)" (July 1, 1999). His show was warm and family-oriented. "ZZ Top Greatest Hits" (July 1, 1999). His music was conservative, concentrating mostly on pop song standards, polkas, and novelty songs, delivered in a smooth, calming, good-humored easy listening style. "ZZ Top: Elimination" (June 1, 1998).

He was born in Strasburg, North Dakota to Russian German parents. "Sharp-Dressed Men: Zz Top Behind the Scenes from Blues to Boogie to Beards" (May 1, 1994). Lawrence Welk (March 11, 1903—May 17, 1992) was a musician, accordion player, band leader, and television impresario. "Elimination: The ZZ Top Story" (December 1, 1991). "ZZ Top" by Robert Draper (July 1, 1989). "ZZ Top" by Philip Kamin (March 3, 1986).

"ZZ Top" by Mitchell Craven (July 1, 1985). "ZZ Top: Bad and Worldwide" (1985). 9, 2004) - ZZ Top plays on this DVD. "Eric Clapton Crossroads Guitar Festival" (Nov.

"ZZ Top's Greatest's Hits" (2004). "TV Dinners". "Burger Man". "Rough Boy".

"Viva Las Vegas". "Sleeping Bag". "Legs" (1984). "Sharp Dressed Man" (1983).

"Gimme All Your Lovin'" (1983). also, the songs listed under "Music Videos" below. "Velcro Fly". "Tush".

"Nationwide". "La Grange". "Cheap Sunglasses". Rancho Texicano (2004).

Chrome, Smoke & BBQ (2003). Mescalero (2003). XXX (1999). Rhythmeen (1996).

One Foot in the Blues (1994). Antenna (1994). ZZ Top's Greatest Hits (1992). Recycler (1990).

Afterburner (1985). Eliminator (1983). El Loco (1981). DegŁello (1979).

The Best of ZZ Top (1977). Tejas (1976). Fandango! (1975). Tres Hombres (1973).

Rio Grande Mud (1972). ZZ Top's First Album (1970).

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