Tony RomanoPerry Como ~ Mr. Saturday Night!

If You Were My Girl

Following is bio of Tony Romano
written by Johnny Bradford.

Tony Romano, if he is remembered at all, will be thought of as the pal and accompanist for such famous stars as Bob Hope, Frances Langford, BIng Crosby, VIc Damone and countless others. He is less renowned for his greater talents: singing, composing, arranging and conducting. His instrument is the acoustic guitar, which plays in a style that devolved from the masterful accompanists of the legendary Eddie Lange, whose work on early Bing Crosby recordings became the paradigm for all future guitar accompanists.

What became Tony's unique gift for improvisational melodic invention began to evolve in the early 1930s, when he was the teenage singing star of the then-popular "Happy Go Lucky Hour, " a five-day-a-week radio show out of San Francisco. Since he was expected to learn a new song for every show, and since, unknown to anyone but himself, Tony has not yet learned to read music, he often was forced to "fake" the half-remembered melody around the lyrics, very often ad libbing a melodic line which was better than the original. This talent, born out of ignorance, would lead to Tony's becoming, for most of the rest of his musical career, a much sought-after vocal arranger.

In 1941, Tony and his "surrogate date," Morey Amsterdam, wrote an act for Ann Sheridan, cinema's "Oomph" girl. She and Romano toured some 75 military bases, entertaining hundreds of thousands of American servicemen. Tony's recollections of this fabulous beauty and such stars as James Cagney, Erroll Flynn, Forrest Tucker, Stan Laurel and Bing Crosby are sometimes poignant, often hilariously funny and  always insightfully revelatory.

In 1942,  Tony joined Bob Hope's USO troupe for  two-week tour of the Alaska/Aleutians theater of operations. Hope, Romano, Frances Langford and Jerry Colonna comprised the act, which Hope dubbed "Hope's Gypsies." As the troupe's boy singer, one-man "orchestra" and Bob's "foxhole buddy," Tony became the closest thing to a confidant that Hope ever allowed himself to have.

As a "fly-on-the-wall" throughout the ensuing many years of traveling more a million miles with Bob, Tony came to know this most famous of all comedians, warts and all, better than anyone else has.

Composer Index
A Perry Como Discography 
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First Edition Summer 1992
Second Edition Christmas 1993
Web Page Edition Christmas 1997
25th Anniversary Revision October, 2017
 
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Saturday, September 23, 2017