Thread: Vic Tooker
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Old 10-10-2016, 01:05 PM
R. Dale Flick R. Dale Flick is offline
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S.A.
Posts: 1,573

*Tooker family in early 'Vaudeville.'*
Steamboating colleagues:
Bob is correct on the many instruments Vic Tooker was master with high accomplishments. They 'say' musical ability runs in families, possibly inherited. Others say 'genetics deals the cards, environment plays the hand.' Again, I didn't know them as well as many of you. Another one with a big "ego" was Bob Hope who also began in vaudeville.

Parents Alice and Guy Tooker were no spring chickens when I first met them. Alice great on the base fiddle and, I think, dad Guy on the banjo and other instruments. I also recall stories of the Tooker parents starting their careers eons ago in the vaudeville circuit. Now, there's a difference in 'vaudeville' and old time 'burlesque' for sure. I always thought the Tookers reminded me of good English music hall performers of the old school. A few of us do recall possibly the last dying breath of good vaudeville in big city movie theaters along with the classic theater pipe organs. The ALBEE and PALACE theaters here in Cincinnati had modified vaudeville performers for a show leading to the leading first movie or double feature. I well remember the 'Step Brothers,' 'Abbott and Costello, 'Andrew Sisters' and others here when I was a kid. Even Ozzie and Harriett Nelson of TV fame [Sons Ricky and David later on radio and TV in Black/White] years ago with Ozzie's big band and Harriett his lead singer at old Moonlite Gardens, Coney Island. I think even the Nelsons did a couple of gigs on the last ISLAND QUEEN. Capt. Bill Judd would possibly know and remember. Then early on Jack Cleary and his band played on the DELTA QUEEN here. Another steamboater also came from the Wilmington and Blanchester, Ohio region with the late Marty Stouder, social hostess on the big SOUTH AMERICAN cruise steamship on the Great lakes and on the DQ balancing the cruising season. When the SOUTH AMERICAN was forced out of business due to the then new 'Safety at Sea Fire' legislaiton she switched over to the DQ nearly full time. And that is a long time ago now. Well, what do I know--or remember?

R. Dale Flick
Old Coal Haven Landing, Ohio River, Cincinnati.
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