Bernie Green

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Space age pop maestro Bernie Green was born in New York City on September 14, 1908. After studying music at New York University's College of Fine Arts, he began working in radio, an experience that culminated…
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Space age pop maestro Bernie Green was born in New York City on September 14, 1908. After studying music at New York University's College of Fine Arts, he began working in radio, an experience that culminated in 1940 when he was hired to serve as musical director for The Henry Morgan Radio Show. Given his own three-minute headlining spot on each broadcast, Green introduced a series of original compositions that later resurfaced on his LPs for RCA Victor. During his eight-year stint with Morgan, he also wrote and conducted scores for the Dashiell Hammett-inspired "The Fat Man" as well as "The Clock," which aired on ABC radio from 1946 to 1948. When "The Clock" moved to NBC television in 1949, Green migrated to the fledgling medium as well, and in 1952 was named musical director of the Wally Cox cult-classic Mr. Peepers. His other television gigs included Pulitzer Prize Playhouse, Adventure, The United States Steel Hour, and Caesar's Hour. Green launched his recording career with More Than You Can Stand in Hi-Fi, a wry satire of the current vogue for stereophonic releases that features such absurd moments as Brahms' "Hungarian Rhapsody #2" arranged solely for kettle drum. His sense of humor no doubt landed him the RCA release Musically MAD, an LP commissioned and inspired by the popular humor magazine MAD. But Green's indisputable masterpiece remains 1961's Futura. Conceived for RCA's renowned Stereo Action series, the album is an unexpectedly challenging experiment in electronics and tape manipulation on par with more celebrated musique concrète recordings of the same period. Futura made little impact at retail, however, and Green spent the remainder of the 1960s in television, highlighted by a stint as musical director for the variety series The Garry Moore Show. Beginning in 1968, he also scored and conducted the annual Miss Universe and Miss USA pageants each year until his death on August 8, 1975, at his home in Westport, CT.