Dick Ruedebusch from Milwaukee was a powerhouse on the trumpet, similar to Al Hirt. In 1965, Dick was playing with the Salt City Six in the Lounge at the Cape Colony Inn in Cocoa Beach, Florida. The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, led by Sam Donahue with featured vocalist, Frank Sinatra, Jr. was playing in the main ball room.
The band also featured lead trumpet player, Charlie Shavers. Shavers had first joined Tommy Dorsey in1945 to play the jazz chair and sometime lead trumpet. It was the first time an African-American had become a regular member of the band. Peggy Schwartz, a member of Dorsey’s Sentimentalists, recalled that, despite his importance to the band, “Charlie had to go through the backdoor of hotels on the road. He could never eat with the rest of the band. We had to bring him whatever he wanted from the restaurant or diner.” Continue reading