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Rhodes, George A. papers, 1947-1997 | Amistad Research Center

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Title: Rhodes, George A. papers, 1947-1997
Created by: Rhodes, George A.
Received Extent: 17.0 Linear Feet
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Scope and Contents:

George A. Rhodes was a pianist, music director, composer, and arranger. He studied piano at the Julliard School and went to work for Appollo Records in 1950-1952. He also worked for RCA Victor (1954-1955), King Records (1955-1956) and Ammco Records as a music arranger from 1958-1959.  He was the first Black conductor for Golden Boy in 1965 and the first Black orchestra leader at the Coconut Grove in 1971.  Between 1975-1976 he was the first and only Black music conductor at the Tropicana Hotel in Las Vegas.  He conducted the George Rhodes Orchestra for Sammy Davis Jr. and was the TV music conductor for the NBC Follies, Sammy & Co. TV series (1977-1978) and other Sammy Davis specials.  He was the music director for the Broadway show Stop the World in 1978.  He won an Emmy Award for 1964-1965 for Outstanding Music Arranger-Conductor.  He was the long time music director for Sammy Davis Enterprises in Beverly Hills, California.

The collection consists of music scores, conductor piano scores, original arrangements and compositions by George Rhodes for the George Rhodes Orchestra and Sammy Davis & Co. TV series.  Also, included are the conductor books for Stop the World, 1978 and piano conductor scores for the various orchestral instruments.  The instrument scores were contained in leather portfolios, which have been housed separately from the scores for preservation. A small number of photographs have also been included with the donation and consist of portraits of George Rhodes.

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