George Hamilton Green, Jr. (1893-1970) was a child prodigy on piano and violin. He made his first xylophone as a boy in Omaha, Nebraska. At the age of 9 he made his first solo appearance with his father’s concert band.
While still a teenager he was considered to be “the greatest xylophonist in the world” and was acclaimed as such wherever he appeared. His repertoire of solos, while still a boy, was well over 300 standard overtures, Hungarian rhapsodies, violin concertos and concert piano selections. The United Musician, a New York musical publication, said of him in 1915, “He has begun where every other xylophone player has left off. His touch, attack, technique and interpretation in rendition of his solos being different than other performers. To say that his work is marvelous and wonderful would not fully express it.” This is typical of the reviews written about Mr. Green when he was appearing on the concert stage, vaudeville, recording and early radio.
He began his recording career as a soloist for the Edison Company in 1916.He recorded for virtually every label from that time until his retirement in 1940. It is a great blessing that his musical genius has been preserved in those thousands of recordings.
George Hamilton Green elevated the xylophone to the position where it was recognized as a legitimate concert instrument.