William E May was born in 1916 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He was an American composer, arranger and trumpet player.
William E May was born in 1916 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He was an American composer, arranger and trumpet player. He composed for film and television and wrote arrangements for many of the top singers of the swing era. While working as a staff arranger for the NBC network and then later working for Capitol Records, May wrote and arranged for artists such as Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Bobby Darin, Bing Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald and Rosemary Clooney. During the 1940's big band era he worked and recorded with both the Charlie Barnet Orchestra and Glenn Miller and his orchestra. From his early musical beginnings playing the tuba in his school band he was intrigued with orchestration and arranging. May's writing often featured brisk tempos and intricate brass line’s, a distinctive feature of his style was his frequent use of the various trumpet mutes and slurping saxes. With Nelson Riddle he was involved in scoring the film scores for The Green Hornet, Batman and the Rat-Pack romp Sergeants 3. Solving the Riddle was written for his cult brass and rhythm album Big Fat Brass. His biggest hit as a composer was the children's song "I Tawt I Taw A Puddy Tat", which he recorded with Mel Blanc in 1950.