Biography All Music Guide
All Music Guide:
With the premature death of Eddie Lang in 1933, Dick McDonough and Carl Kress were considered his likely successors both on jazz dates and in the studios. McDonough was already a very busy player. He had started out in 1927 as a banjoist with Red Nichols, had switched over to guitar, and appeared on hundreds of sessions, including with the Dorsey Brothers, the Boswell Sisters, Joe Venuti, and in more commercial music. His work accelerated with Lang's passing, he occasionally teamed up with Kress, and during 1936-1937, McDonough led a notable series of medium-size group recordings, few of which have ever been reissued. McDonough also recorded with Glenn Miller's unsuccessful big band of 1937 and made a notable appearance on an all-star date with Fats Waller, Tommy Dorsey, Bunny Berigan, and George Wettling that was issued as "A Jam Session at Victor." A strong acoustic guitarist who emphasized chords in his solos (influencing Marty Grosz decades later), Dick McDonough's alcoholism cut short his life much too early.