Those Boswell Sisters Talk
Radioland – Date Unknown c1933
…Is Boswell your real name? If not where did you get it?
Yes, it is our real name. Believe it or not we got is from our parents who are still living in New Orleans.
Is Vet’s name a whole name in itself or is it a nickname or abbreviation?
Vet’s real name is Helvetia. That was too much of a mouthful for us. We couldn’t abbreviate it to the first syllable very well, so we abbreviate it to the second.
Are there any other brothers or sisters in the family beyond the Boswell trio?
No; that’s all there is, there isn’t any more.
What color are your eyes and hair?
All of us have brown eyes and dark brown hair.
Who is the oldest?
Martha is the oldest, then comes Connie. Vet is the baby of the family.
Who is the tallest?
Vet is the tallest. She is five feet four. Martha is five feet three and Connie is five feet.
Did you ever study voice?
In the words of the popular success story we never took a lesson. But we did study instrumental music. In fact we were an instrumental trio before we were a vocal trio, playing in concerts and benefits. We started singing as part of our stage performance.
What instruments do you play?
All of us can play about any instrument. But Martha plays our accompaniment over the air.
Who makes your musical arrangements?
We make our own arrangements, and good or bad we have to stand or fall on them, take the credit or the blame.
Do you have a preference for any particular type of music?
No we like all types.
Why do you sing more jazz numbers than classics?
We used to sing about an equal number of each. But the popular selections like Stormy Weather brought such a great response from our fans that we decided to give them what they wanted.
Do you have any particular favorites?
Yes, so many it would be hard to list them all. Blue Heaven, Sleepy Time Gal and Chloe are just a few of them that come to mind offhand.
Do you really read your own fan mail?
When you ask that, smile stranger! As much as humanly possible we read every letter that comes in to us. We have a secretary who files and classifies the letters we get. But we answer ourselves. We are very proud of our fan following and like to keep personal contact with those who write to us.
Does it make it easier for you to work together being sisters?
Yes, there is something deep underneath that holds us together. Besides, the Boswells have always been very clannish. We don’t have a chance to go out much, working so hard all the time, so it is a good thing we are congenial.
Do you always agree?
No indeed. We have different ideas about our work. But we never have serious quarrels because none of us is selfish or pig-headed. Then we have different ideas about what constitutes a good time. Martha would rather dance than do anything. Vet prefers to cook, while Connie is simply crazy about football.
Do you girls always dress alike?
No. We only do that for our numbers on the stage.
Do you wear each other’s clothes?
Do we! What we wear for the day depends on who gets to the clothes first.
Do you like the same things to eat?
M-m-m! Fried chicken. Only Connie, being the littlest, always eats more than the rest of us.
What are your hobbies?
Connie and Vet like to paint. Martha prefers to cook…