Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music

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RAZAF, Andy

(b Andrea Paul Razafkeriefo, 16 Dec. 1895, Washington DC; d 3 Feb. '73, North Hollywood) Lyricist, said to be descended from the royal family of Madagascar. Wrote lyrics for shows Keep Shufflin' '28, Hot Chocolates '29, Blackbirds Of 1930, many other revues and night club floor shows. Most successful collaboration was with Fats Waller ('Honeysuckle Rose', 'Keepin' Out Of Mischief Now', 'Ain't Misbehavin'', 'Blue, Turning Grey Over You', 'How Can You Face Me', 'The Joint Is Jumpin'', many others), also Don Redman ('Gee, Baby, Ain't I Good To You?'), Paul Denniker ('S'posin''), James P. Johnson ('A Porter's Love Song To A Chambermaid'), Eubie Blake ('Memories Of You'), William Weldon ('I'm Gonna Move To The Outskirts Of Town'). Wrote both words and music for 'That's What I Like About The South', huge novelty hit for Phil Harris; also added words to many Swing Era hits/instrumentals incl. 'Knock Me A Kiss' (hit for Gene Krupa '42), 'Christopher Columbus' (hilarious recording by Waller '36), etc. Recorded as vocalist, often using pseudonyms: with Luis Russell, Fletcher Henderson, Rex Stewart, a few records of his own: as Tommy Thompson recorded 'Back In Your Own Back Yard', 'Nobody Knows How Much I Love You' '28 with another singer, a violin and Waller on piano. Had a stroke, spent many years as an invalid.