About The Group
We happened across an old song folio for Salt and Peanuts from days gone by. In it was a write by attributed to Natalie Giddings.
"Meet Salt and Peanuts in person!
Step right up and get acquainted with those two radio and vaudeville stars whose comedy songs and tender ballads have come to be classed with the most popular of radio ands stage entertainment.
You can really get close to Salt if you want to. Why, he'll even break down and confess that his name is Frank Salt ('though, he's just as apt to tell you that his first name's "Epsom." He's funny that way.)
But with Peanuts it's different. Ask Peanuts what her "real name" is, and she'll turn up her saucy little chin at you, and say "Peanuts."
"What does Salt call you then," you ask, trying to slip up on her when she's off her guard.
"Peanuts," she'll answer pertly, and that's as far as you'll get.
"Salt and Peanuts" is their name." Salt and Peanuts" they remain, too, even when they cash their fat salary checks that are always made out to "Salt and Peanuts." It's pretty puzzling to the bankers sometimes, because bankers don't seem to realize that Salt and Peanuts are every bit as good names as Henry Schlogenhauer or Minnie Schmaltz They're even better names, perhaps, for Salt and Peanuts are names famous where. ever radio is heard.
Once upon a time (and not a very long time ago either), Salt lived on a ranch "away out West in Kansas" as he sings in so many songs. Even as a child he sang lustily. It was a ranch house keeper who taught little Frank his first song at the age of three. From then on, as long as he lived on his father's ranch and rode cattle with the rest of the cowboys, he kept on learning western songs and ballads.
He went to the University of Kansas like a good native son. He join°d the P! Kappa Alpha fraternity there, and began writing songs just about the same time., When he found out that professors prefer essays and term papers to comedy verses, Salt packed up his ukulele and his 'coonskin coat and headed for New York and Broadway. There he found that everybody liked comedy songs and yodeling and singing of the kind he loved to do, and that nobody cared a hoot about term papers and essays. He decided then and there that college educations were unnecessary anyway and he stayed' on Broadway.
He teamed with a boy named Pepper. As Salt and Pepper they toured all the vaudeville circuits: Keith's, Lowe's, Fox, and Balaban and Katz. To play the Palace Theatre in New York City is the uncontradictable sign that a vaudeville act has "arrived." Salt and Pepper played it twice. They made phonograph records too; hundreds of them.
Broadway shows called Salt and his partner then, and the harmony team played "The Passing Show of 1926," "Gay Paree," which ran on Broadway for a solid half year, "Merry World;" and "Passions of 1926." New York City's supper clubs claimed them too; such smart ones as the Yacht Club, the Mont Martre, the Anatole, the Silver Slipper, the Rue de la Paix, and Barney's.
Ultimately Salt broke up the partnership to form his own act. He went into vaudeville again, this time as "Frank Salt and Company," with two girls who sang and danced as the "company." The three together sang harmony, although Salt as "head man" did most of the act which was what the audience demanded.
Just about then is where Peanuts entered the picture. By-the- way I want you to meet "PEANUTS", the little lady of the team. Peanuts hails from Joplin, Missouri, the Gateway to the Ozarks, Land of a million smiles, as it is called, so that is probably where Peanuts got her smile. Peanuts started singing and dancing when just a child, and by the time she was 13 years old she had her own dancing and physical culture school, and in a short time she had one of the largest schools !n the Southwest. But for Peanuts there were larger fields to conquer, leaving Joplin she went to Chicago, where she entered vaudeville as the feature dancer of a big Revue. Several times she and Salt met while playing the same theatre. After Salt saw Peanuts dance he knew he wanted her in his act.
So after the next show, Salt made a date with Peanuts to talk things over. He knew she was a clever dancer and hey wanted to know if she, could sing too. She was bashful about singing She didn't want to sing for Salt for fear he "might laugh" at her. Much coaxing over a dinner in a little Italian restaurant finally won her into singing a song with him. The result was good. The tone and quality of her voice blended perfectly with his, which is the prime necessity for a pleasing harmony team.
Three days they rehearsed songs and a new act. Then Salt broke up his original act, paid off the two girls, and took Peanuts into his act as the "company." That third day after they started rehearsing saw them go on the stage as headliners on the Keith vaudeville circuit where they stayed for a year.
Radio called them then. Their first audition landed them a commercial radio contract in New York City and they went on the air us- the catchy name of "Salt and Peanuts."
After a season in New York, they pulled out for WLW in Cincinnati where their success was tremendous. Since leaving WLW SALT AND PEANUTS have sung over KDKA, the Pioneer Radio Station at Pittsburgh, PA, then to KMOX, St. Louis, MO. WJR, Detroit, MI was next, WGY, Schenectady, NY was their next stop, where they originated a program for the Red NetWork of the NBC Network, a coast to coast network of 44 stations four times weekly. WSM and THE GRAND OLE OPRY called them next, then WBT contracted for their services at Charlotte, NC Salt and Peanuts are now adding new laurels for themselves on WHAS, the station that saved thousands of lives during the last Ohio flood. Letters come to them daily from listeners all over the world. Some of them are addressed only with pictures of a salt-shaker and a sack of peanuts.
But the post men ail know Salt and Peanuts too, so the letters all reach their destination.
When they make personal appearance in the. atres, radio listeners for miles around to go see them. One morning at four o'clock of the day they played an Ohio town, the theatre manager was awakened by a 'phone call.
"I'm sixty miles away and I want to know what time Salt and Peanuts go on the stage this afternoon," said a woman's voice. "I'd like to get my washing done this morning but if it's necessary I'll start driving right now so I'll be sure to get them in time!"
At another ally, a mother wafted at the stage door two hours to meet Salt and Peanuts when they came out of the theatre. "I'd like to hire you to come to our home to entertain my little boy;" she explained. "He was hurt in an auto accident two weeks ago and he's grieving so because he couldn't come to see you today that the doctor says he will have a serious relapse if he doesn't get to see you;" she begged. Needless to say, Salt and Peanuts refused to be hired but went to see the little boy and entertained him for more than an hour as he lay in bed.
Entertaining that little sick boy was just the kind of work they like best to do. Their aim in life obviously is to make everyone happy. That's why they have such a perfectly swell time when they're singing comedy songs on the stage or on the air. Their work is hard; long hours of entertaining, rehearsing, andtraveling around the country to make theatrical appearances in addition to their many periods on the air. But they smile all the time. Most of the time they sing whether they're working at it or not.
When their can do a good turn for someone they are all the happier It isn't any professional "Pollyanna" attitude toward life that they have adopted. It's just that they're both "regular fellers" with hearts of gold and when they smile at you, they really mean it."
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