Previous Vocal Group Record of the Week
#600 (Week of 1/17/09 - 1/23/09) [Complete Upgrade on 12/30/17]


"Maybe Some Rainy Day"/"Be Fair With Me"
by Bixie Crawford
(With Buddy Banks And His Notes... aka the Buddy Banks Sextet)
on King 4309-A/B
released in 1949

Above: Bixie Crawford. She was born in Oklahoma City in 1923. After her short stay with Buddy Banks in 1949, she became vocalist for the new Count Basie Band in 1952. Bixie was fired when Basie's wife discovered her making (false) advances toward the Count!

Click HERE for an article about Bixie Crawford by Marv Goldberg.
(Will open in a separate window)

PITTSBURGH COURIER, November 12, 1949:
Lovely Lady—Birdie Harris (aka Bixie Crawford), former Louis Jordan band vocalist who lives in Los Angeles, appeared recently as guest artist on "Adams Alley" Television show. She has also cut several records.

NEW YORK AGE, May 12, 1951: ....A sultry songstress from the West Coast and a veteran "horn man" of many jazz circuits — beauteous BIXIE CRAWFORD and ORAN "HOT LIPS" PAGE — are two of the galaxy of Blues and Rhythm stars signed recently by RCA Victor Records in an aggressive move to strengthen the company's position in this important field. BIXIE is the discovery of HENRI RENE, West Coast manager of RCA Victor....

CALIFORNIA EAGLE, June 17, 1954:
Bixie Crawford "Singsational" Count Basie Feature—Vocaluscious Bixie Crawford was "swinging" home this week after a successful tour of five European countries. Tantalyzing Bixie is the femme chirp with the Count Basie aggregation and will appear with the maestro at the annual Calvacade Of Jazz program this Sunday at Wrigley Field.

Although now a tune pan alley temptress, Bixie was formerly a Los Angeles schoolmarm. But the news got around that Miss Crawford was well versed with a lyric and had a way of toying with a song. It was in 1951 that RCA Victor Recording Company discovered her rare talent and contracted her for a long run. It was on this label that she etched such torrid sides as "My Man's A Devil" and now "Please Let Me Be" and Bixie's recent [sic] big sounds include "Maybe Some Rainy Day" and "Never To Cry Again." Scrapple from the Apple has it that these sides are jumping juke fare on the eastern seaboard....

(NOTE: The "recent big sounds" were released in July 1949 and September 1953. The named RCA Victor sides came out in 1951.)

NEW YORK AGE, April 10, 1954: Continental Favorite
NEW YORK—Bixie Crawford, curvaceous song stylist with the Count Basie orchestra, is currently the talk of European music centers where she has been appearing with the Count on his current tour of the continent. Music critics have gone out for the lovely Bixie "hook-line and sinker." She returns to the good old U.S.A. next month.

NEW YORK AGE, January 29, 1955: Bixie Crawford Hits Road As "Single" Star
NEW YORK—Bixie Crawford, the sensational vocalist, recently featured with Count Basie, this week launched a career as a "single" under management of Tillie Mitchell, well known talent agent. Bixie's initial engagement as a "single" was a two weeks stint at exclusive Club Showtime in Boston, where she was hailed by critics and patrons alike. From Boston the singer will move into the Buffalo area and follow this one with a tour of Canada. (Later bookings will include) cafe stops in Chicago, Detroit and the West Coast.

Miss Crawford as a vocalist with several name bands was well liked wherever the orks appeared. She not only pleased as a singer but rated equally as high in personality. She was referred to in many stories as "Miss Vocalist" and compared with the greatest of bandom's singing stars.

(NOTE: My guess is that the afore-mentioned Miss Mitchell prepared the above article for the newspapers, or had it handled through a press agent.)

PITTSBURGH COURIER, October 22, 1955:
BACK IN L.A.—Because of the illness of her mother, Mrs. Juanita C. Macklin, Los Angeles civic worker, Bixie Crawford, recent vocalist with Count Basie, left the East Coast to live with her mother for an indefinite period. Mrs. Macklin, well-known for her activities with the Exceptional Children's Opportunity School, is in the process of recovering.

Above: (Left) Count Basie poster, (Right) Bixie Crawford 1949.

Above: 1945 photo of the Buddy Banks Sextet (L-R) Wallace "Wiley" Huff (trombone), William "Basie" Day (bass), Fluffy Hunter (vocalist), Ulysses "Buddy" Banks (tenor saxophone), William "Frosty" Piles (guitar), Nat "Monk" McFay (drums), and Joe "Earl" Knight (piano). Fletcher Smith replaced Earl Knight on piano for the King sessions.

Above: Bixie Crawford.... (Left) Pittsburgh Courier 11/12/49 [as "Birdie Harris"], (Middle) New York Age 4/10/54, (Right) Pittsburgh Courier 10/22/55.

(From Rochester Democrat And Chronicle dated 2/22/54)

(From California Eagle dated 12/21/55)

PITTSBURGH COURIER, November 10, 1956:
Congrats For Timmie—Talented comic Timmie Rogers, who scored a hit in his "Too Poor To Die" stage pesentation in Los Angeles, receives congratulations from vocalist Bixie Crawford. Both stars are scheduled to perform for the Women's Sunday Morning Breakfast Club spectacular, Nov. 29, at Fox-Figueroa Theatre (in Los Angeles).

CALIFORNIA EAGLE, March 23, 1961:
Tagging Winners—Judges for the Zenith's eighth annual Talent Show are busy tabulating points for each contestant. From left, seated: Singers Helen Humes, Bixie Crawford, and Eujalia Evans, publicity chairman. Standing from left: Eddie Beale, Bob de Coy, master of ceremonies, and Tom Hawkins, both of KGFJ; and screen actor Barry Sullivan.

EXTRA AUDIO (Windows Media Player):

At Left: Label image of Empire 102 released in March 1956. "Vocal Trio by Bixie Crawford." The Midnighters (Federal, 1955), Sunny Gale (RCA Victor, 1956), Ella Mae Morse (Capitol, 1956), and Helen Grayco (Vik, 1956) also released this song. Bixie, a couple of months later, moved to the new C-Note label.

In 1956, The Preludes, Youngsters and Tempters (all the same group) had records released on the Empire label.

The Cash Box Review (4/7/56):

BIXIE CRAWFORD — EMPIRE 102.... Rock And Roll Wedding (B) Miss Crawford has one on this side that is beginning to make noise in the top field via another reading. This is the more intriguing side to the record buyer. Real teener material.

(NOTE: A rating of B was considered "very good.")

Listen to "Rock And Roll Wedding" - Bixie Crawford - Empire 102 - 1956.

Above: Label image of King 4309-A, recorded on April 2, 1949 and released in July 1949. The composer, William "Frosty" Pyles, was the guitar player in Buddy Banks' band. The flip side's composer is Fletcher Smith, who was another member of Banks' band at the time. This was Bixie Crawford's only release on Cincinnati's King label. She also had releases on RCA Victor (1951), United (1953), Empire (1956), C-Note (1956), and Indigo (1960).

The Cash Box Review (8/6/49):

BIXIE CRAWFORD — KING 4309....Maybe Some Rainy Day/Be Fair With Me
Chirp Bixie Crawford displays some good vocal tones on this pair tagged "Maybe Some Rainy Day" and "Be Fair With Me." Wax is a pleasant offering that should do well on music ops' machines. Top deck, a slow teasin' blues number has the gal spooning some mellow vocal allure in strong, sultry tones that score. The flip maintains the same tempo, with Bixie turning in an effective bit of vocal work on the side. Ops should listen in.

The Billboard Review (8/13/49):

Maybe Some Rainy Day
(67) Vocal group with ork lend adequate support to the new gal chirp who can gliss 'em just right. So-so tune, tho.
(NOTE: In music, gliss is a glide from one pitch to another.)
Be Fair With Me (67) Material seems to be holding back the breathy style of Crawford gal.

(NOTE: A ratings range of 40-69 was considered "satisfactory.")

Listen to this week's selections by Bixie Crawford (With Buddy Banks And His Notes) on King 4309-A/B from 1949:
[Audio restoration by Dave Saviet.]

      Stream/Download Media Player...
           Maybe Some Rainy Day
           Be Fair With Me
          BOTH played in sequence

    [To download audio files, right-click on link
    and then select "Save (Link) Target As..."]

At Right: Clipping from California Eagle dated 11/3/47