The obituary of Mitch Leigh brings forth in me again, the frustration for all the unsuccessful attempts to contact people who would have been able to provide info on the life and career of Shep. Jim Clavin and I each tried and failed to get through to Mitch Leigh, composer of the jazz in Shep’s “Jean Shepherd Into the Unknown with Jazz Music”:
Here are the beginnings of two obituaries of the composer of the Broadway super-hit, “Man of La Mancha.” Neither contained an important piece of info (IMHO). Fortunately, through the good graces of Wikipedia, a dogged Shep-fanatic (me) rectifies that problem.–eb
Mitch Leigh, ‘Man of La Mancha’ Composer, Dies at 86
By ANITA GATES MARCH 16, 2014
One day in 1964, a New York advertising-jingle composer in his early 30s received an unlikely job offer.
The composer, Mitch Leigh, the Brooklyn-born son of a Jewish furrier from Ukraine, had no theater experience to speak of. All he had ever done was compose incidental music for a couple of short-lived Broadway comedies — “Too True to Be Good” (1963) and….
Mitch Leigh From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
He began his career as a jazz musician, and writing commercials for radio and television. In 1955 the little-known LP recording of Jean Shepherd Into the Unknown with Jazz Music was produced with Leigh writing the music for the jazz interludes between radio broadcaster Jean Shepherd‘s improvisations.
May the gods above and the devils below
keep this truth from harm.
Especially as it was composed on St. Patrick’s Day.