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Search Search. Years Active — 23 years. The Firehouse Five Plus Two was a Dixieland jazz band, popular in the s, consisting of members of the Walt Disney Studios animation department; Danny Alguire — cornet Harper Goff — banjo Ward Kimball — trombone, siren, tambourine, sound effects, leader Clarke Mallery — clarinet Monte Mountjoy — drums Ed Penner — bass saxophone on early recordings, but later s… read more.
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It was then that he showed me the big original FH5 advertising photo and he pointed out still steamed about it well after over 40 years how Harper Goff showed up in tan pants when everybody else came in black, as instructed. Not long after the house was built came feet of real train track and a locomotive, henceforth fun riding the train back and forth.
After WW2 was over came new tracks of homes with neighboring wives complaining of his train soot getting into their drapes and curtains. Those were the days. Eventually Ward Kimball wrote a check so that the Perris, Ca. He showed me these little passenger cars that he was building for people to ride in at the Perris train museum.
He built a wooden toy thing with him holding a brand new toy train and when you turned the handle Betty would hit him over the head with a mallet. He turned it once and it was just so funny! It was another invitation. He showed me an early sketch book of his and he had a very slick and realistic illustration style that was different from his cartoons. Once he went to hear Kid Ory and he requested Muskrat Ramble and Ory looked at him like he was crazy. At the end of my first visit I brought my Ward Kimball George Burns style glasses and we mugged for a funny photo.
On my last visit, February , I drove my sports car in his driveway. When the visit was over he walked me out as we were still talking. I remember as we were walking down his train tracks I asked him if he ever missed the FH5. But there had to more to it than that. Ward told me that he left Disney in and taught life drawing and storyboards at Art center, College of Design from about to So go figure.
Nobody else in the band wanted to quit. My latter conversations with Ward were regarding his artwork and producing at the studios. I was sure I would be able to visit with him again in person to talk about his art and producing and to see some more of his original art, his art studio and things like that.
Before I finished the book he came down with pneumonia. He was always very nice to me. It had to do with the person getting them the Las vegas gig and MCA and something else or other. Ask George. They played a reunion performance for the or Rose Parade. Their sponsor an airlines big wig wanted as many of the original members as possible but that was out of the question.
Every time the photographer went to push the camera button Dick Roberts would look right at the camera even though he was told not to do that. Finally, after several hours, they got one good useable photo. All of the band members brought their second rate instruments that day because of the damage that the sea water could do.
Also, during this photo shoot day, a group of Japanese tourist were scuba diving. They entered the ocean a mile down the way but when they came to surface they ended up coming out of the water seeing a group of fireman with various musical instruments marching into the sea. In , with George Probert. Ward drew Jerry in as the drummer in the cartoon instead of Jim or Monte. Jerry Hamm is on 3 tracks, on their Volume 3 L.
Ward told me he was asked By the way Frank just happened to have his pocket knife with him and spent the hour undoing the glue between all of the keys so that he could play it. The kids were mad waiting to get on the ride. I hope you enjoyed this trip down my Firehouse Five Plus Two memory lane. John Smith, who subbed for George Probert in the FH5, took the sign when they were about to pull the plug on jazz there at the Beverly Cavern.
After keeping it in his garage for about 40 years he gave it to me a number of years ago. The same artwork is on the reverse side with different dates on it. The reverse side is in worst condition.
I bought it from Pam Wyley who found it, if I remember correctly, in a pawn shop. After Wild Bill passed away the family gave it to jazz writer, Floyd Levin. Years later Floyd Levin presented it to me and I will always cherish it. My father is posing with the helmet in this photo.
Entrance to the building where he kept his 3 fire engines. Ward is standing in the back rear where he kept all of the FH5 stuff. GFRR looking from the train house towards the front of the property. Building of his toy trains.
The glasses again. Close up of Ward. Ward looking back at me Ward was still a bit irked about it.. Disney Studios sent a videographer to film the memorial. During the event the room was filled to capacity needed a larger room and many people were turned away.Released as a single around May , but it did not chart in Billboard. However, a version of the song by the Ferko String Band did chart at #14 in June