Joe Kearns played alto and baritone saxophone and clarinet on the Philly music scene in the '30s and '40s, his affiliations including the respected dance band of Jan Savitt with the romantically involved vocal team of George "Bon Bon" Tunnell and Carlotta Dale. On the subject of crooners, however, it is the surname Crosby that jumps out from the Kearns discography. Both brothers are represented on various retrospective collections, including Bob Crosby & His Orchestra -- 1938 and Bing Crosby's Greatest Hits: 1934-1943. Kearns also recorded with bandleaders Teddy Grace and Irving Fazola. The height of his recording days was the late '30s when he played on an average of ten recording sessions each year. The name Joseph Kearns is more often used by an actor from roughly the same period, although there are credits where the reedman's first name is given the same promotion in formality. Ironically, one of the actor's most famous parts was as the neighbor Mr. Wilson on Dennis the Menace, both the radio and television series. Of particular note is an episode wherein Kearns tries to talk the bratty Dennis the Menace out of learning saxophone, not something the Savitt sideman would have done.
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