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Denny Dennis

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Denny Dennis (Ronald Dennis Pountain, Derby, England, November 1, 1913 - November 2, 1993) was an English dance band singer.

Denny Dennis was one of the finest romantic vocalists of what is now fondly remembered as the golden age of British dance bands, with a career as a band singer, solo recording star and broadcaster which spanned three decades. Yet it all started by chance when he was heard by the editor of the Melody Maker, Percy Mathison Brooks, at a regional dance band contest.

Dennis Pountain, as he then was, was playing drums for a semi-pro band in Derby, where he worked as an apprentice electrician on the LMS railway. No vocal was scheduled for that night in 1932 but he filled in during a lull in the proceedings and Mathison Brooks was so impressed he sent the teenager to London for an audition with the American bandleader Roy Fox. Fox liked Pountain’s resonant baritone voice, but felt he needed more experience. So for 12 months or so he sang with the Freddy Bretherton Orchestra at the Spider’s Web, a roadhouse on the Watford by-pass where he was heard by another bandleader, Jack Jackson, with whom he made his first recordings in 1933.

One of them, ‘I’m getting sentimental over you’, became the signature tune of Tommy Dorsey, whom Dennis would join in 1948 - the first Englishman to sing with an American big band. By then he was a household name, recording in the Thirties, touring Britain and Europe with Fox and broadcasting not only on the BBC but the two commercial stations Radio Normandy and Radio Luxembourg.

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