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Fredrick Malcolm Waring, Sr.
Fred Waring.jpg
Permanent Waring exhibit at Penn State. Photo by Dave Bonta.
Born (1900-06-09)June 9, 1900
Tyrone, Pennsylvania
Died July 29, 1984(1984-07-29) (aged 84)
State College, Pennsylvania
Children Fredrick Malcolm Waring, Jr.

Fredrick Malcolm Waring (June 9, 1900 – July 29, 1984) was a popular musician, bandleader and radio-television personality, sometimes referred to as "America's Singing Master" and "The Man Who Taught America How to Sing."[1] He was also a promoter, financial backer and eponym of the Waring Blendor, the first modern electric blender on the market.[2]


Fredrick Malcolm Waring was born in Tyrone, Pennsylvania on June 9, 1900 to Jesse Calderwood and Frank Waring. During his teenage years, Fred Waring, his brother Tom, and their friend Poley McClintock founded the Waring-McClintock Snap Orchestra, which evolved into Fred Waring's Banjo Orchestra.[1] The band often played at fraternity parties, proms, and dances, and achieved local success. He attended Penn State University, where he studied architectural engineering. He also aspired to be in the Penn State Glee Club, but he was rejected with every audition due to "college politics" and tension between him and the glee club's director, Dr. Clarence Robinson.[3] His Banjo Orchestra eventually became so successful that he decided to abandon his education in order to tour with the band, which eventually became known as Fred Waring and his Pennsylvanians.[1]

He married his college sweetheart, Dorothy McAteer, in 1923, but divorced her in 1929. He remarried in 1933 to Evalyn Nair and had three children, but in 1954 they divorced.[3]


From 1923 until late 1932, "Waring's Pennsylvanians" were among Victor Records best-selling bands.[4] In late 1932, he abruptly quit recording, although his band continued to perform on radio. In 1933, "You Gotta Be a Football Hero" was performed on radio to great acclaim. (His 1930 recording of Cole Porter's Love For Sale is one of the only period versions of this popular, yet controversial hit that has a vocal chorus.)

Adding a men's singing group to his ensemble, he recruited Robert Shaw, recently out of the Pomona College glee club, to train his singers. Shaw later founded the Robert Shaw Chorale, directed the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus and became America's preeminent conductor of serious choral music. The Waring glee club sound can be detected in some Robert Shaw Chorale recordings. Pembroke Davenport (1911–85) was Waring's pianist and arranger.

During World War II, Waring and his ensemble appeared at war bond rallies and entertained the troops at training camps.[1] He composed and/or performed dozens of patriotic songs, his most famous being "My America." In 1943, Waring acquired the Buckwood Inn in Shawnee on Delaware, Pennsylvania, and renamed the resort the Shawnee Inn. To promote the Inn, Waring centered his musical activities at the Inn itself. He created, rehearsed and broadcast his radio programs from the stage of Shawnee's Worthington Hall throughout the 1950s.

During the 1940s and early 1950s, Waring and His Pennsylvanians produced a string of hits, selling millions of records. A few of his many choral hits include "Sleep," "Battle Hymn of the Republic," "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes," "Button Up Your Overcoat," "White Christmas," "Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor" and "Dancing in the Dark."[5]

Choral workshops[edit]

In 1947, Waring organized the Fred Waring Choral Workshop at his Pennsylvania headquarters in the old Castle Inn in Delaware Water Gap in Pennsylvania,[6] which was also the home of Shawnee Press, the music publisher which he founded. At these sessions, talented musicians learned to sing with precision, sensitivity and enthusiasm. When these vocalists returned home and shared what they had learned with fellow musicians, Waring's approach to choral singing spread throughout the nation. The first Fred Waring Music Workshop in the western United States was held in June 1968 as part of the University of Nevada's Summer Session curriculum in Reno, Nevada.[citation needed] Waring taught and supervised these summer workshop for 37 years, continuing right until the day he died.[1]


Waring expanded into television with The Fred Waring Show, which ran on CBS Television from June 20, 1948 to May 30, 1954 and received several awards for Best Musical Program. (The show was 60 minutes long until January 1952, and 30 minutes thereafter.) In the 1960s and 1970s, popular musical tastes turned from choral music, but Waring changed with the times, introducing his Young Pennsylvanians, a group of fresh-faced, long-haired, bell-bottomed performers who sang old favorites and choral arrangements of contemporary songs.[7] In this way he continued as a popular touring attraction, logging some 40,000 miles a year.[1]

Waring Blendor[edit]

In the 1930s, inventor Frederick Jacob Osius went to Waring for financial backing for an electric blender he had patented. The Osius patent (#2,109,501) was filed March 13, 1937 and awarded March 1, 1938.[8] Some $25,000 later, the Waring-owned Miracle Mixer was introduced to the public at the National Restaurant Show in Chicago retailing for $29.75. In 1938, Fred Waring renamed his Miracle Mixer Corporation as the Waring Corporation, and the mixer's name was changed to the Waring Blendor (the "o" in blendor giving it a slight distinction from "blender").

The Waring Blendor became an important tool in hospitals for the implementation of specific diets, as well as a vital scientific research device. Dr. Jonas Salk used it while developing his polio vaccine. In 1954, the millionth Waring Blendor was sold, and it is still popular today.[9]

Recognitions and awards[edit]

Throughout his career, Fred Waring received many awards, but none was as illustrious as his last one. In 1983, the 83-year-old Waring – by now considered king of popular choral music – was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal, the nation's highest honor for a civilian, by President Ronald Reagan.[1]

Fred Waring died suddenly of stroke on July 29, 1984 at the place where it all began – Penn State University – just after videotaping a concert with his ensemble and completing his annual summer choral workshop. He conducted many such workshops at Penn State in his later years, and in 1984, designated Penn State to house his collection of archives and memorabilia. He also served his alma mater as a trustee and was named a Distinguished Alumnus of the University. Although many believe that Waring Commons at Penn State is named for him, it is actually named for his grandfather, William Waring. In Long Beach, California, there is a Fred Waring Drive named for him. Another Fred Waring Drive is a major arterial road in the Palm Desert-Indio area of Southern California (where many major roads are named for post-World War II era entertainers).

The Waring Golf Course north of Harrisburg, PA was named after Waring, and he had an ownership interest in it. It ceased operation around 1960.

Fred Waring was the Shepherd (President) of The Lambs from 1939–1942. The Lambs is America's oldest professional theatrical club, www.The-Lambs.org

In 1997, a Golden Palm Star on the Palm Springs, California, Walk of Stars was dedicated to him.[10]

Comic strip collection[edit]

Cartoon by Chester Gould from the Fred Waring Collection

Waring was a cartoon and comic strip collector, and a Penn State meeting room by the West Wing restaurant has dozens of cartoons drawn by artists such as Al Hirschfeld in Waring's honor.

From 1943 to 1974, Waring owned the Shawnee Inn and Country Club, a golf resort located at Shawnee on Delaware, Pennsylvania near Stroudsburg. In 1948, two years after the National Cartoonists Society was formed, Waring invited members of that organization to spend a day at the Shawnee Inn. It became an annual event, held each June for the next 25 years, resulting in a huge collection of artwork created for Waring by the cartoonists, including many drawn on Shawnee Inn stationery. The Lone Ranger artist Tom Gill recalled:

Fred Waring would hire these buses, and we would get onboard in Times Square. They would take us through the Holland Tunnel, along Route 80, to his house in Pennsylvania. We spent the whole weekend there. Ping pong, golf, tennis, swimming—he had it all.

Ed Cunard's grandmother managed the Shawnee Inn, and he quoted from a self-published book she had written:

You see, my grandmother was always a career woman. She started out working with Fred Waring at the height of his popularity (so, yes, this is going back quite a way). When she decided to settle down and marry, she left his music enterprise and went to manage the resort he owned in the Poconos. This much, I knew. I knew that she had met all sorts of celebrities and quasi-celebrities through these jobs, but there was one section that stood out to me: "It's the only autograph I have of all the celebrities I have met, except for autographed sketches by a couple of cartoonists. They came to Shawnee for an annual outing which Mr. Waring hosted every June to celebrate his birthday. When the National Cartoonists came to Shawnee, it was a time they all came together for a busman's holiday—golf and tennis during the day. After the evening entertainment provided by Mr. Waring, they charmed all of us with their inimitable style of humor and talent demonstrations. All the greats in that art field were there—Mort Walker, Stan Drake, Milt Caniff, Charles Schulz and many others. I can still visualize Hal Foster, on one of their trips, standing before a large easel in the lobby of the Inn drawing his famous Prince Valiant. In fact, I treasure a copy of that drawing which is truly more art than cartoon. We were so fortunate to witness such talent." It goes on for a while longer, detailing how the cartoonists would draw on the tables as part of their time at the resort, and that these sketches are available for viewing at Penn State's Fred Waring America Collection.[11]

The Cartoon Room was Waring's name for the lounge room of Shawnee Inn, where the Pennsylvanians and the cartoonists assembled for food, drink and entertainment. Special tables in the Cartoon Room featured original art because Waring had the cartoonists create drawings on parchment paper, which was permanently laminated on the 30" X 30" tabletops. The walls of the Cartoon Room and the long hallway leading to it displayed numerous cartoons. Today, the Fred Waring Collection at Penn State has more than 600 cartoon originals, including over 50 of the laminated table tops.

Artists who contributed to the Waring Collection included Jay Alan, Alfred Andriola (Kerry Drake), Jim Berry (Berry's World), Charles Biro (Squeeks, Crimebuster, Daredevil), Martin Branner (Denny Dimwit), Ernie Bushmiller (Nancy), Milton Caniff (Steve Canyon), Mel Casson (Jeff Crockett), Chon Day, Steve Douglas, Bill Dyer (Patsy), Gus Edson (The Gumps), Eric Ericson, Gill Fox (Foodini). Frank Godwin (Rusty Riley, Patty Miles), Irwin Hasen (Dondi), Jeff Hayes (Silent Sam), Art Helfant (Patty Pinhead), Bill Holman (Smokey Stover), Stan Kaye, Bil Keane (Family Circus), Jeff Keate, Reamer Keller, Ted Key (Hazel), Lank Leonard (Mickey Finn), Jack Markow, Jay McArdle, Bill McLean (Double Trouble), Paul Norris (Jungle Jim), Bob Oksner (Leave It to Binky), Russell Patterson (Mamie), Clarence D. Russell (Pete the Tramp), Don Trachte (Henry) and George Wunder (Hotshot Charlie).[12]

Waring family[edit]

Fred Waring was survived by five adult children; Dixie, Fred Waring Jr., William "Bill", Paul and Malcolm. Son Fred Jr. was a conductor and jazz trombonist. Grandson Jordan Waring is an orchestral composer.[13]

Cultural references[edit]

In the third-season M*A*S*H* episode "Springtime," when Hot Lips Houlihan sees Hawkeye Pierce in a tuxedo and tells him, "You're out of uniform," he replies, "I am not, I'm with Fred Waring!"

Warren Zevon's 1973 song "Poor Poor Pitiful Me" features a narrator who claims that he's "been put through some changes Lord, sort of like a Waring blender."

In the film A Christmas Story, Waring's music can be heard playing in the mall during the famous "Santa" scene.

See also[edit]


Fred Waring and His Pennsylvanians sing "The Star-Spangled Banner" in 1942

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External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fred_Waring — Please support Wikipedia.
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52830 videos foundNext > 

Patriotic music from Fred Waring's America Part 1 of 3

Patriotic songs taken from The Fred Waring Show on CBS. Fred Waring's America at Penn State University can be found at http://www.libraries.psu.edu/psul/spec...

Fred Waring's Pennsylvanians - Dancing In The Dark (1931)

Fredrick Malcolm Waring (June 9,1900 - July 29,1984) was a popular musician, bandleader and radio-television personality, sometimes he was referred to as "Am...

"Flahooley" on the Fred Waring Show

Video from CBS' The Fred Waring Show on May 20, 1951 featuring Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians singing select numbers from the musical Flahooley. Videos a...

Fred Waring & his Pennsylvanians - Dry Bones (ca. 1947)

Happy Birthday Cole Porter! from the CBS Fred Waring Show.

Brief video compilation taken from The Fred Waring Show on CBS. Features the music of Cole Porter, played and sung by the Pennsylvanians: Love for Sale, In t...

Alice in Wonderland - The Fred Waring Show (1951)

Here is the "Alice in Wonderland" segment during the March 18, 1951 episode of The Fred Waring Show, featuring Kathryn Beaumont, Sterling Holloway, and a spe...

"The Happy Wanderer" Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians

Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians, Featuring Leonard and Robert Kranendonk.

Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians -- The Sounds of Christmas

Side 1 & 2 of the original vinyl. Also, a selection from 'Twas the Night Before Christmas'

Fred Waring's Pennsylvanians - Sleep (1932)

Fredrick Malcolm Waring (June 9,1900 - July 29,1984) was a popular musician, bandleader and radio-television personality. Sometimes he was referred to as "Am...

Fred Waring's Pennsylvanians - Stack O' Lee Blues (1924)

Fredrick Malcolm Waring (June 9,1900 - July 29,1984) was a popular musician, bandleader and radio-television personality, sometimes he was referred to as "Am...

52830 videos foundNext > 

571 news items

The Desert Sun
Tue, 12 Aug 2014 11:43:34 -0700

A man suffered non-life threatening injuries Tuesday in a single-car crash on Fred Waring Drive and El Dorado Drive in the city of Indian Wells, according to the Riverside County Sheriff's Department. The crash happened at 9:38 a.m. and the man was ...
The Desert Sun
Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:03:45 -0700

In Palm Desert, four "curb basin screens" have been installed along two streets off Fred Waring Drive. Two different types of screens are being used: a stainless steel screen that retracts automatically during heavy rains, and a hard plastic bristle ...


Mon, 18 Aug 2014 17:56:15 -0700

One is in Palm Desert in the Rancho Las Palmas area bounded by Monterey Avenue on the east, Fred Waring Drive and Highway 111 on the south and Bob Hope Drive on the west. There are three slumps in Indian Wells east of Eldorado between Highway ...
San Francisco Chronicle
Thu, 14 Aug 2014 05:56:15 -0700

At 15, she was concert mistress of the 50-member Accordion Orchestra at the University of Missouri in Kansas City, and, upon graduating from high school, she went on tour with Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians playing Cordovox (electronic accordion).
The Desert Sun
Tue, 29 Jul 2014 06:48:49 -0700

They collided at the intersection of Fred Waring Drive and San Pablo Avenue and the car blocked the right eastbound lane. Its driver told a Desert Sun photographer at the scene he was OK. The pickup pulled over onto San Pablo and it had damage to its ...
The Desert Sun
Mon, 11 Aug 2014 21:07:30 -0700

The patrolman chased the car for 15 minutes, until the Honda veered off the roadway and onto a curb, where the driver bailed out and fled into the Arabian Gardens Mobile Home Park on Fred Waring Drive. Lopez was able to leave the area by catching a ...
Pocono Record
Thu, 14 Aug 2014 07:26:15 -0700

In 1943, a year before C.C. Worthington died at age 91, he sold the inn to Manawalamink Inc., headed by Fred Waring. Waring was the famed musician of Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians. He renamed the resort the Shawnee Inn. Waring and his wife, ...
The Desert Sun
Sun, 03 Aug 2014 18:13:48 -0700

A widening project is still forcing traffic to be limited to one lane in each direction on Fred Waring Drive in La Quinta. The work is taking place between Adams Street and Port Maria Road, but should wrap up this summer. • One lane is blocked in each ...

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