Cotton Club was a Center for Celebrities Like Rubinoff and Durante. Why am I blogging about this? Because in these times: Let’s all get happy. Please share this with everyone. Spread the cheer!
- I worked with Rubinoff and His Violin for some 15 years. He is seated at the piano in the featured picture. Durante is playing Rubinoff’s violin.
- Rubinoff was at the show biz heart of both of New York and L.A. In the 1930’s he grossed hundreds of thousand of dollars annually.
- I think we are about to return to glamour and good times. I hope to help that along. It’s time we all had “fun”. Let’s start with Betty Boop. Then we’ll continue with Jimmy Durante and others. Durante was famous for his “big nose”. Everyone seemed to have a gimmick.
First, who was Betty Boop?
A title card of one of the earliest Betty Boop cartoons
Betty Boop is an animated cartoon character created by Max Fleischer, with help from animators including Grim Natwick.[8
James Francis “Jimmy” Durante and Rubinoff were great friends. Durante (February 10, 1893 – January 29, 1980) was an American singer, pianist, comedian, writer, and actor. His famous nickname was The Great Schnozzola (a reference to his big nose). He was also known for his deep raspy voice. His gimmick was saying: “Ha-Cha-Cha-Chaaaaa!”. He won an Emmy Award in 1952.
The Cotton Club Thrives
As for the Cotton Club: Dave told me about how he enjoyed the Club in 1930’s. There was always good food and entertainment. When Rubinoff arrived they always played the theme from his radio show: “Give Me a Moment Please.” He first met Durante at the Club. He also met such celebrities as: Cab Calloway. Lena Horne, Satchmo, Ethel Waters, Joe Louis, Louis Armstrong, and, of course, The Great Schnozzola.
Rubinoff told me he also had special reserved tables at Club 21, Mama Leoni’s, Trocadero’s and Lindy’s. I ask my reader: Is that having a good time, or what? Finally, Jimmy Durante was a regular on The Chase and Sandborn Hour with Rubinoff. Once when Eddie Cantor, the host, went on holiday, Durante substituted. Below is an internal link. It tells some of my story with Rubinoff. I hope to spread the fun!