In 1930 four brothers from Ohio, known as the Mills Brothers, got their big break - they were granted an audition with a CBS radio executive. The youngsters had been performing as a barbershop quartet, with unique imitations of musical instruments. After their fantastic audition they were immediately put on the air. The next day the brothers were offered a three year contract with CBS radio, and they co-starred on the beloved show The Fleischmann's Yeast Hour from 1930-31. In 1932, they were given their own radio series - they were the first African Americans to have a network show of their own. In 1931, they released their first recording, a cover of the jazz standard Tiger Rag. The recording, on Brunswick Records, soared to number one. Tiger Rag, one of the most covered jazz songs of all time, was originally recorded and copyrighted by the Original Dixieland Jass Band in 1917. By the 1920's there had already been hundreds of recordings of the song. By the 1930's the song had appeared in over a dozen films and cartoons - including Max Fleischer's Betty Boop & Grampy in 1935. (see HERE) The Mills Brothers re-recorded the song for the cartoon, and they also recorded songs for two other Fleischer cartoons.
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