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Ted Shapiro

Pianist, Musical Director, Lyricist

Ted Shapiro is best known as the pianist and musical director for Sophie Tucker. His association with Tucker began in 1921 and lasted for 40 years, during which time he wrote one of her signature songs, “Nobody Loves a Fat Girl, But Oh How a Fat Girl Can Love.” Tucker, a big, proud woman, gave it her self-deprecating humor to great applause. The song was even picked up by modern day troubadour/pop singer Jim Croce, who died at 30 in a 1973 plane crash. It is included in the home recordings released by his family in 2003. Shapiro also co-wrote much of Tucker’s bawdy material such as “The Older They Get the Younger They Want ‘Em” (1944).

Despite his long-term commitment to Tucker, Shapiro wrote songs with several collaborators. His best-known standard, “If I Had You,” was written in 1928 with Reginald Connelly and James Campbell. In 1927 he and Gus Kahn wrote “Waitin’ for Katie,” which was picked up by the popular Ben Pollack Band, and “Little Mistakes.” “To You” and “This is No Dream” were written with Benny Davis and Tommy Dorsey in 1939. “(I Love the) Winter Weather” (1941), for which Shapiro wrote words and music, was recorded by Fats Waller and by Peggy Lee with Art London in her first session with Benny Goodman.



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