Van Alexander, US bandleader turned composer, died aged 100


Acording to variety the conductor and author died of heart failure on Sunday in a Los Angeles hospital.

Alexander played an important role in Ella Fitzgerald's career, co-writing her first big hit, the nursery rhyme-inspired A-Tisket, A-Tasket, in 1938.

He went on to write and arrange music for Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie and The Dean Martin Show.

Born Alexander Feldman in New York in May 1915, Van Alexander was taught to play the piano by mother, a classical pianist.

Hired to write arrangements for Chick Webb's big band orchestra, he went on to form his own band in the late 1930s.