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Special Collections and Archives
researched by Music Librarian Christopher Popa

   In 1979, when trombonist Vincent Lopez, Jr. put a big band back together several years after his father's death, he needed the proper vintage music to play.
    "A lot of it was destroyed in a garage in Florida during a rainstorm or hurricane or whatever," Lopez Jr. revealed to me in 2004.  "But I was fortunate to have in my band, in the early years, an arranger who... his name was Frank Mann . . . he had offices in the Brill Building in New York, as did the Dorseys and, I think, Lombardo, all the musicians had offices there.  He got the job of cutting down the arrangements for the Dorsey band -- Tommy Dorsey -- from 18 to 12, and had to make it sound like 18 with 12 musicians.  So Frank had played with me for a number of years, and he actually reconstructed a lot of the arrangements from the heyday of the Lopez band, from recordings.  We have some of the stuff, that's available, some of the original arrangements, but I would say, out of the 'Lopez era,' probably 90% are transcriptions."
    As far as memorabilia, one of the most-prized items the son has is a facsimile of the star Vincent received on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
    According to Lopez Jr., "This was, maybe, six, eight years ago.  I had come home and was getting ready to go into the door of the house and there was a package there; it was all wrapped up and, apparently, UPS had delivered it.  I looked at it and it had a Hollywood, California address on it.  So I got it inside, opened it up and here, in this package, somebody was kind enough to send me... and I knew of this before, obviously, but I had never seen anything like this . . . here was the plaque commemorating that.  I have it hung up in my family room, which I feel is neat, very c-o-o-l, you know."

    The American Heritage Center at the University of Wyoming in Laramie, WY holds the "Vincent Lopez Papers, ca.1920-1973," which includes sheet music and songbooks, newspaper clippings, and artifacts such as his conductor's baton and music stands.

    Other memorabilia, such as the autographed request card from a 1939 appearance by Lopez at the Jung Hotel in New Orleans, shown below, is in the hands of private collectors.

Entertainment Industry Resources,
Vincent Lopez, Jr.  Interview with author, Dec. 2, 2004.

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