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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,nomad Joe Venuti's (in)Famous Practical Joke! (18) RE: Joe Venuti's (in)Famous Practical Joke! 23 Apr 19

17 years later....

I found an image of a followup prank that some of the bassists played on Venuti. According to the article, the prank was in Hollywood in 1928 and it was 38 bass players at Hollywood and Vine.

The image shows Venuti surrounded by several bassists with their instruments and the subtitle reads:

"Joe Venuti, premier jazz violinist and infamous practical joker, had the tables turned on him Septebmer 21 when he came into Rick's Cafe American in Chicago to begin a three-week engagement. The versatile octogenarian found twenty-two Chicago area bass players waiting for him in Rick's with a sign saying "Hey Joe! Is this where the GIG is?" The gag was a twist on a practical joke Venuti played on thirty-eight bass players back in 1928 when he told them all to assemble at Hollywood and Vine for a gig. Of course, no one was there except thirty-eight bass players and their instruments. The internationally renowned violinist, whose credits include appearances with Eddie Lang, Paul Whiteman, the Boston Pops, and most major symphonies, performed at Rick's through October 9. Rick's, one of the city's hottest jazz rooms, is located in the Holiday Inn Lake Shore on Shore Drive."

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