Bob Dorough (1923 - 2018), "Schoolhouse Rock" musician


Bob Dorough, whose career began as a composer, arranger and singer in the booming NY jazz scene of the '50s and '60s before he became the musical keystone of Schoolhouse Rock!

According to NRP, Dorough continued to perform until his death, and was survived by his wife, Sally Shanley Dorough. He later joined the Special Services Army Band Unit in 1943, and served there through the duration of World War II.

According to his biography, Dorough chose to pursue a Bachelor of Music degree at the University of North Texas before heading off to New York City in hopes of making it big. In 1952, he turned his back on the academic scene to devote himself to jazz performance, specializing in piano/vocals.

He released his debut album, Devil May Care, in 1956 on Gus Wildi's Bethlehem label, also home to Nina Simone's first album. He is known as "the only singer to record with Miles Davis." While this may not be 100 percent true, he did record two vocals with Davis in 1962, "Nothing Like You" and "Blue Xmas," both of which he composed. The title track was later recorded by MILES DAVIS, which has since become a jazz standard.

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While Dorough was an accomplished jazz musician and composer, his work for "Schoolhouse Rock!" will live forever in the hearts of people who grew up in the '70s, '80s and early '90s. The impact of this media exposure was unpredictably vast. Expanding to cover grammar - Dorough's least-favorite subject to pen music on - American politics and history and science, the initial series ran for 12 years and was revived in the "90s". He sang on many of them too.

"They discover me again, playing at bars!".

Now recording on Arbors, Candid, and his own label, Bob Dorough continues to perform, often for children too, in jazz clubs and schools wherever he can.