Bob Eberly (July 24, 1916, Mechanicville, New York – November 17, 1981, Glen Burnie, Maryland) was a big band vocalist, best known for his association with Jimmy Dorsey and his duets with Helen O'Connell.
Eberly was born Robert Eberle, but changed the spelling of his surname slightly to the homonymous Eberly. His younger brother Ray was also a big-band singer, most notably with Glenn Miller's orchestra. Their father, John A. Eberle, was a policeman, sign-painter, and tavern-keeper. Another brother, Al, was a Hoosick Falls, New York village trustee.
He recorded the original version of "I'm Glad There Is You" in 1942 with Jimmy Dorsey and His Orchestra on Decca Records, 4197B. The song subsequently became a jazz and pop standard.
In 1953, Eberly and Helen O'Connell headlined a summer replacement program for Perry Como's CBS television show. The program also featured Ray Anthony and his orchestra.
Eberly was married to Florine Callahan from January 23, 1940 until his death in 1981; the couple had 3 children; Robert Jr., Kathy and Rene. Robert Jr. went on to sing professionally and although he was talented, he never achieved the popularity of his father which was due, in part, to the changing times and the diminishing nightclub scene as the popularity of Big Band music as a whole began to decline during the mid to latter part of the 20th century (Family source).
Last years and death
In 1980 Eberly had one lung removed but still continued to sing. He died of a heart attack in 1981 in Glen Burnie, Maryland, aged 65. He will long be remembered as being gifted with one of the best male singing voices in history, which was equaled only by his generous nature and unique sense of humor.
- "It's The Dreamer In Me" (with Jimmy Dorsey and His Orchestra; 1938)
- "Green Eyes" (with Helen O'Connell; 1941)
- "Tangerine (song)" (with Helen O'Connell; 1941)
- "I'm Glad There Is You (In a World of Ordinary People)" (with Jimmy Dorsey and His Orchestra; 1942)
- "Besame Mucho" (with Kitty Kallen; 1944)
- "Love Letters In The Sand (Cartas De Amor En La Arena)" (with Enoch Light & His Orchestra; 1957)