Maceo Pinkard

From Wind Repertory Project
Maceo Pinkard


Maceo Pinkard (27 June 1897, Bluefield, W.V. – 21 July 1962, New York City) was an American composer, lyricist, and music publisher.

Pinkard was educated at the Bluefield Colored Institute, class of 1913, and wrote his first major song (I'm Goin' Back Home) one year later. In his early career he formed his own orchestra and toured throughout the U.S. as the conductor. In 1914, at age 17, Pinkard founded the theatrical agency in Omaha, Nebraska, and eventually founded Pinkard Publications, a music publishing firm in New York City. In 1917 he formed his own publishing firm, Maceo Pinkard Music, and began selling compositions to national publishing companies. 1919 h saw the publication of his first big hit, Mammy O’Mine.

In 1919, Pinkard moved to New York City. His best work was written during the decade 1921-1931, his famous music composition being Sweet Georgia Brown, lyrics by Kenneth Casey. He was one of the greatest composers of the Harlem Renaissance.

Duke Ellington's introduction to the music industry began with Maceo Pinkard. Shortly after they met at Barron's nightclub, Pinkard took Ellington downtown and introduced him to the music publishing district. Ellington recorded some of Pinkard compositions such as Is That Religion?, Sweet Georgia Brown, and Them There Eyes.

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