Arlen Biography

Chana Revell Kotzin, Ph.D.

General Articles and Books

Woody Backensto, “Who were the Buffalodians?” The Record Changer, Vol 13, January 1954, p. 7, p.14.

Jacqueline Bassan, From Shul to Cool: The Romantic Jewish Roots of American Popular Music, New York, Jay Street Publishers, 2002.

Laura Lynn Broadhurst, “Arlen and Harburg and More, Oh My!” The Cumulative Creation of the Oz Songs, in Adapting the Wizard of Oz: Musical Versions from Baum to MGM and Beyond, Danielle Birkett and Dominic McHugh, Oxford Online, 2018-2019.

Allen Forte, The American popular ballad of the golden era, 1924-1950, Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press, 1995.

Allen Forte, vocal interpretations by Richard Lalli, with pianist Gary Chapman. Listening to classic American popular songs. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2001.

Walter Frisch, Arlen’s Tapeworms: The Tunes That Got Away. The Musical Quarterly, 98:139–170, 2015.

Walter Frisch, Arlen and Harburg’s Over the Rainbow, New York, NY : Oxford University Press, 2017.

Rodger Kamenetz, “Hebrew Tones in The Blues.” Tikkun, Volume 25, Number 3, May/June 2010, pp. 65-66 (Review) [Book Review of A Fine Romance: Jewish Songwriters, American Songs by David Lehman, Schocken, 2009].

Roy Hemming, The Melody lingers on: the great songwriters and their movie musicals. New York : Newmarket Press,1986

Charles B. Hersch, Jews and Jazz: improvising ethnicity. New York, NY ; Abingdon, Oxon : Routledge, 2017.

Edward Jablonski, Harold Arlen: Happy with the Blues, A Da Capo Paperback,1986.

Edward Jablonski, Harold Arlen: Rhythm, Rainbows, and Blues,  Northeastern, 1996.

Robert Kapilow, Listening for America : inside the great American songbook from Gershwin to Sondheim. New York : Liveright Publishing Corporation, 2019

Eric Pace, “Harold Arlen, Composer of Song Standards, New York Times, April 24, 1986.

Walter Rimler, “Harold Arlen : always the bridesmaid, “ in Walter Rimler, Not fade away : a comparison of jazz age with rock era pop song composers. Ann Arbor, MI : Pierian Press, 1984.

Walter Rimler, The Man That Got Away: The Life and Songs of Harold Arlen. University of Illinois Press, 2015.

Deena Rosenberg, “Arlen and the Art of the Show Song,” New York Times, January 27, 1977, pp., 7, 28.

Kirk Silsbee, “A cantor’s son travels over the rainbow … Harold Arlen,” reprinted in Arts Meme, 2018.

Nathaniel Sloan, “Stormy Relations: The Cotton Club, Broadway Spirituals, and Harlem Encounters in the Music of Harold Arlen and Ted Koehler.”  The Musical Quarterly, 101:120–156.

Steven Suskin, with a foreword by Michael Feinstein. Show tunes : the songs, shows, and careers of Broadway’s major composers. Revised and expanded fourth edition. New York : Oxford University Press, 2010.

Ken Terry, “Harold Arlen Dies in NY. At 81; Wrote Broadway, Film Standards,” Variety, April 30, 1986, p.166.

Alec Wilder, edited and with an introduction by James T. Maher. American popular song : the great innovators, 1900-1950, New York : Oxford University Press, 1972.

Remembering Harold Arlen in Buffalo

Tom Buckham, “Arlen’s Legacy of Songwriting will be Honored in Hall of Fame,” The Buffalo News, January 5, 2001, p. C1, C12.

Tom Buckham, “Arlen Joins Hall of Fame Luminaries in Shea’s,” The Buffalo News, January 18, 2001, p. B3.

Colin Dabkowski, “Buffalo’s Music Man: Musicalfare Theatre brings the Life and Tunes of Songwriter Harold Arlen to the Stage, reconstructing his legacy in the city and culture that produced him.” The Buffalo News, 2007, G1-G2. [Heather Violanti, “A Rainbow Journey: The Harold Arlen Story.”].

Thomas Dooney, “Words and Music: The dramaturge and the tunesmith,” Clipping, no page numbers, c.2007.

Mary Kunz Goldman, “Pot of Gold,” The Buffalo News, May 22, 2005, p, H1-H2.

Neil Graves, “He Wrote the Songs: A friend recalls the days when songwriter Harold Arlen played the honky-tonks of Buffalo,” Buffalo Magazine, May 10, 1987, p. 38-41.

Judi Mohn Griggs and Andrea Michnik, Before the Rainbow: Harold Arlen’s Buffalo, June 2005.

Richard Hanser, “Melody Makers- Hal Arlen: Indianola Lures Cantor’s Son to Jazz Temples,” The Buffalo Times, Clipping, February 17, 1931, n. page number.

“Harold Arlen is Dead; Buffalo Native Won Fame as Songwriter,” The Buffalo News, April 24, 1986.

“Harold Arlen, Hiding in Plain Sight,” Western New York Heritage, Summer/Fall 2003, p.38.

Irv Lichtman, “A Blizzard of New Interest in ‘Wizard of Oz’s Harold Arlen’,” Billboard, 108 (17), 45.

Darryl Lyman, Great Jews in Music. New York, Jonathan David Publishers, 1986.

Dan Herbeck, “Famed Buffalo Composer Gets Postal Service’s Stamp of Approval,” The Buffalo News, September 10, 1996, p. A1.

Susan Martin, ”Theatric’89, Studio Arena Benefit Will Salute Arlen,” The Buffalo News, February 1, 1989, p. B6.

Anne Mcllhenny Matthews, “Harold Arlen Concert Set,” Buffalo Courier Express, Clipping, no date, no page number.

“Picture of a Budding Songwriter,” Clipping, Gusto, Buffalo News, April 25, 1986, p. 2. [note : dated at 1905, but Arlen was born that year. It therefore has to be circa 1912 or later].

Anthony Violanti, “Harold Arlen is Gold at the end of ‘Rainbow’,” The Buffalo News, June 24, 2004, p. C1.

Anthony Violanti, “The Rainbow Journey of Harold Arlen: An International Celebration of Buffalo’s World-Class but Underappreciated Composer Comes with A Message,” The Buffalo News, 2005, p. 6-11, 19.

Anthony Violanti, “Enshrining Harold Arlen’s genius,” The Buffalo News, 2005, p. B1-2.

Local Archival Collections

Harold Arlen (Hyman Arluck) sheet music and Handel Medallion, Benjamin and Dr. Edgar R. Cofeld, Buffalo, NY.

The Harold Arlen (Hyman Arluck) noncirculating [Music] Sheet collection. Buffalo and Erie County Public Library, Rare Book Room, Central Library, Buffalo, NY.

Harold Arlen, 1976, Performing Artists Photograph Collection, Buffalo and Erie County Public Library, Rare Book Room, Central Library, Buffalo, NY.

Harold Arlen, vertical file, Buffalo and Erie County Public Library, Rare Book Room, Central Library, Buffalo, NY.

Harold Arlen, vertical file, Buffalo History Museum, Buffalo, NY.

Harold Arlen as a child and J.H. Rubenstein as a 16-year old at the Pine Street Shul, Papers of Dr. Hubert J. Rubenstein, 1853-2006, ms96, Box 1.2., c. 1912, University Archives, University at Buffalo, NY. Papers of Dr. Hubert J. Rubenstein, 1853-2006, ms96,