b. 1918, USA, d. November 1999. Having served his musical apprenticeship in the Army Air Force Band, Bill Pannell formed his first dance band orchestra in 1945 in Fresno, California, USA. This group stayed predominantly on the west coast, and featured singers Allan King and Kenny Kenniston. Their longest engagement was a 10-year stand at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, with record contracts for Val, Fanfare, Anco and London Records. Later they transferred to the Las Vegas lounge circuit, but by now the band had reduced from its original strength of 12 to accommodate the more austere financial climate facing dance bands. The group continued, often returning to the Roosevelt Hotel, until the early 70s, at which time Pannell was forced to give up his career as a band leader owing to the onset of an arthritic condition.
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