Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Mitzi Joyce

In Sarasota newspapers of the late 60s and early 70s, advertisements appeared hawking some sand-dune chanteuse called Mitzi Joyce as performing at a delightfully seedy-sounding joint called the Five O'Clock Club. Mitzi was a pianist, organist, accordionist and vocalist all in one, and definitely sounds like an act worth catching. The ad copy, in the style of those Mad Men times, declares her "The little redhead with big talent". Me, I like to think that after she had a few gin rickeys in her, if you called her that to her face, she'd hit you with the microphone.

I have tried to learn more about MJ, but the internets are failing me at every turn. I found a few potentially promising leads, but nothing I can report on just now. Once tantalyzing nugget was a blurb from a 1982 circus magazine that, couched among notices for "Darrell's Mule" and "Norbo, the Almost Human Gorilla", describes the lineup for the Coronas Circus as:

Jon Friday, ringmaster; Joe Nappa, Mitzi Joyce, musicians; Bounding Kays, trampoline; Edwardo Trio, bikes; Ruwills, plate spin; Arturo Rescigno; Janie Coronas, dogs; Wallenda Duo, wire; Tangiers, tumblers; George Hanneford family, riders; Swaying Stars; others.

It astounds me that an active musical performer in a major city could leave such a faint echo of a digital trace in the age of the Internet. I suppose finding actual Super-8 film footage of her playing accordion at the Five O'Clock Club is too much to ask?

2 comments:

  1. She taught me how to play organ in the early 90's. She was one of the most wonderful people I've been fortunate enough to have met. I miss her. Yes, she would have hit you with her microphone. :)

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  2. She taught me how to play organ in the early 90's. She was one of the most wonderful people I've been fortunate enough to have met. I miss her. Yes, she would have hit you with her microphone. :)

    ReplyDelete