Witt & Berg

This is the board for Swing, Big Band, Jazz, and other old music.
Post Reply
User avatar
donnie
Posts: 5116
Joined: Sun Feb 26, 2017 8:28 am

Witt & Berg

Post by donnie »

I may have posted this before, but if so can't see it anywhere. It's one of my favorite of the early Vitaphone sound shorts. Witt & Berg were a once popular, now largely forgotten vaudeville act. This was filmed at the Warner studios in 1926. The second video shows a filming of the filming. :)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1aRiqd84_Y

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9b6_6ef3cM

User avatar
BettyLouSpence
Posts: 1275
Joined: Mon Feb 27, 2017 11:29 pm
Location: Gashouse Gables

Re: Witt & Berg

Post by BettyLouSpence »

Aw—just one letter away from being Cy Borg :)

Ok ok, jokes aside: the first thing I noticed was the odd bell-shaped body of that guitar. Might you know anything about it? I also really liked the chord progression in that song.

Interesting that the cameraman's box is cut away like that, which I'm assuming was so the audience could see inside. I'm also assuming that there would've been a glass pane or something, as the boxes had to be soundproof?
"No, Vico! You'd make a marvelous second husband—but you're too much of a luxury for a poor girl's first venture!" ~ Kitty Flanders in Children of Divorce (1927)

User avatar
donnie
Posts: 5116
Joined: Sun Feb 26, 2017 8:28 am

Re: Witt & Berg

Post by donnie »

BettyLouSpence wrote:
Fri Jun 05, 2020 12:28 am
Aw—just one letter away from being Cy Borg :)
One letter kept him out of the comic books. :(
BettyLouSpence wrote:
Fri Jun 05, 2020 12:28 am
Ok ok, jokes aside: the first thing I noticed was the odd bell-shaped body of that guitar. Might you know anything about it? I also really liked the chord progression in that song.
I like the chord progressions, too. I was studying both their left hands to see if I could notice what chords they were using. The only other guitar I've seen like that is the one Carl Sandburg used. That one appears to be almost identical except the one in the film seems to possibly have some kind of a headstock logo the Sandburg one doesn't. (See below)
BettyLouSpence wrote:
Fri Jun 05, 2020 12:28 am
Interesting that the cameraman's box is cut away like that, which I'm assuming was so the audience could see inside. I'm also assuming that there would've been a glass pane or something, as the boxes had to be soundproof?
Yes, I hadn't thought about that. The cameras had to be heavily enclosed due to the noise, however that does appear to be the actual take they're filming there, so maybe it is a glass pane.
Attachments
Screen Shot 2020-06-05 at 8.11.18 AM.png
Screen Shot 2020-06-05 at 8.11.18 AM.png (221.02 KiB) Viewed 118 times

User avatar
BettyLouSpence
Posts: 1275
Joined: Mon Feb 27, 2017 11:29 pm
Location: Gashouse Gables

Re: Witt & Berg

Post by BettyLouSpence »

donnie wrote:
Fri Jun 05, 2020 8:22 am
BettyLouSpence wrote:
Fri Jun 05, 2020 12:28 am
Ok ok, jokes aside: the first thing I noticed was the odd bell-shaped body of that guitar. Might you know anything about it? I also really liked the chord progression in that song.
I like the chord progressions, too. I was studying both their left hands to see if I could notice what chords they were using. The only other guitar I've seen like that is the one Carl Sandburg used. That one appears to be almost identical except the one in the film seems to possibly have some kind of a headstock logo the Sandburg one doesn't. (See below)
I tried looking up "bell shaped acoustic guitar" and other variants of that, but all I could find on it was this blog that featured a beautiful bell-shaped acoustic guitar, but the shape is quite different from the Sandburg's and the Vitaphone one.
"No, Vico! You'd make a marvelous second husband—but you're too much of a luxury for a poor girl's first venture!" ~ Kitty Flanders in Children of Divorce (1927)

User avatar
BettyLouSpence
Posts: 1275
Joined: Mon Feb 27, 2017 11:29 pm
Location: Gashouse Gables

Re: Witt & Berg

Post by BettyLouSpence »

I took a screenshot on another video that might best show the headstock. Does the little white blob look like a logo you might recognize?

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=mP5aWcXIGhY
Attachments
image.jpeg
image.jpeg (80.09 KiB) Viewed 98 times
"No, Vico! You'd make a marvelous second husband—but you're too much of a luxury for a poor girl's first venture!" ~ Kitty Flanders in Children of Divorce (1927)

User avatar
donnie
Posts: 5116
Joined: Sun Feb 26, 2017 8:28 am

Re: Witt & Berg

Post by donnie »

No, it doesn't look familiar, though I'm more familiar with classical guitars which usually don't have logos. But this actually may be just a little decorative inlaid pearl or celluloid accent. The only other information I could find on these guitars is that they were apparently made by Washburn.

Post Reply