Introducing... the Sky Blazers: The Adventures of a Special Band of Troops That Entertained the Allied Forces During World War Ii

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Potomac Books, Inc., Jan 1, 2011 - Biography & Autobiography - 292 pages
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In New York City in 1939, neither eighteen-year-old Jack Jake Jacobson nor his comrade Murray Duke Davison had any intention of joining the military. Their sights were set on playing club dates in what Duke called the upholstered sewers of Manhattan. Jake, a comic, and Duke, a jazz trumpet player, were amateur entertainers looking for their big break, not men in uniform readying themselves for war. That all changed after Pearl Harbor. Newly inspired, Jake and Duke decided to act honorably and enlist in the U.S. Army Air Corps. En route to their first assignment in North Africa, Jake and Duke persuaded Gen. Lewis Brereton of the Ninth Air Force to allow them to perform for their fellow soldiers and boost morale. Spurred by Jake and Duke s success, Brereton subsequently created the first Combat Special Services Entertainment Unit. The eventual formation of this fifteen-piece troupe of comics, singers, and musicians dubbed the Sky Blazers lightened the spirits of combat troops across the Middle East, England, and France during the war. In their two and a half years overseas, they would have many close calls with the enemy as they struggled to put on their shows for the weary Allied forces. The Sky Blazers would also be privy to the glitz of the entertainment business, even performing for Egyptian royalty and at the Royal Albert Hall in London. Rife with glamorous highs and lifethreatening lows, Jacobson s wartime story continues to entertain."

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User Review  - Allen_Bankson - LibraryThing

On the whole beautifully written, with gripping plot twists, although the author does not shy away from foul language, and brief passages are lifted from an earlier book featuring the Sky Blazers. Read full review


PrologueNORTH AFRICA 1943
ONE The French Café
TWO Pearl Harbor
THREE Dayton
FOUR Doris
FIVE The Ninth Air Force
SIX Kuntzy in New York
ELEVEN The Zulus and the Yacht Club Boys
TWELVE Road to El Alamein
THIRTEEN Under New Management
FOURTEEN Duke and England
FIFTEEN Touring France in the Wake of Dday
SEVENTEEN Trouble with the Enemy

SEVEN Lets Put on a Show
NINE The Sky Blazers
TEN King of Egypt
NINETEEN New York Dayton and New York Again
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About the author (2011)

Jack Jacobson began his broadcasting career in 1929 on WHAM radio at the age of eight in Rochester, New York. He was awarded the Bronze Star Medal and the Jubilee of Freedom Medal from the French government. After World War II, he entered a fifty-four-year career in radio and television broadcasting, which included serving on ABC television network's first Promotion Advisory Board, and was inducted into the Arizona Broadcasters' Hall of Fame. He passed away in 2009.

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